They can’t all be winners. No, I am not quoting the mother of my prom date. The Las Vegas Raiders had complete control of their Week 2 contest with the Minnesota Vikings, winning 26-20. While we saw more promising overall play at all levels, there were a few things that didn’t exactly inspire confidence. Can some or all of these problems be fixed before the game against the Miami Dolphins tomorrow?
Raiders’ Interior Defensive Line Disappoints
It didn’t feel right to bestow this honor upon just one member of the IDL group. Outside of a goal line pass deflection and a second down rush attempt stuffed by Kyle Peko and Andrew Billings, respectively, the play of this unit left much to be desired. I hoped that the increased reps and opportunities would allow rookies Matthew Butler and Neil Farrell Jr. to shine. Regrettably, neither has made a significant impact thus far. To make things worse, the Vikings turned to the ground game to generate their earliest successes in the game.
Amik Robertson Fumbles The Bag
The red carpet had been rolled out once again for Amik Robertson. The former fourth-round pick would use a combination of praise and a clean slate from the new coaching staff, quality practice reps due to the absence of those higher on the depth chart, and another offseason to mature at his natural outside corner spot. He knew Sunday’s game against Minnesota would allow him to show he was ready to put the massive chip on his five-foot-eight shoulders to good use. Unfortunately for Amik, all we got against the Vikings was a bad bite on a play-action fake and a penalty for the former Louisiana Tech Bulldog. It’s still early in the process, but Robertson will need to put what is apparently being shown in practice onto game film soon or it could cost him.
Alex Leatherwood Plays Garbage Time
Nothing evokes confidence like watching your former first-round pick at right tackle taking snaps with the third and fourth string. When the Raiders broke the huddle in the first quarter against the Vikings, seventh-round rookie Thayer Munford was at right tackle. Not exactly a glowing recommendation for Leatherwood’s play. Neither does it bode well for the prospects of the former Alabama product securing a starting spot this year. This could be tough love or a way to see just how deep this offensive line group truly is. Though it would make more sense to allow a five-man unit to gel before the season begins.
*Top Photo: Naomi Baker/Getty Images