The Las Vegas Raiders had a 20-0 lead at halftime of their Week 2 matchup against the Arizona Cardinals. However, they blew it in the second half and ended up losing to a Kyler-Murray-led offense in overtime.
There are numerous things to nitpick and examine, but this post will focus on the running game or lack thereof. Looking back, it could be the sole reason this team is 0-2 and last in the AFC West.
The Raiders were a tale of two halves vs. the Cardinals
Running back Josh Jacobs was a force on the field in the first half, plowing through opponents and fighting for those crucial first downs. He finished the first half with 43 rushing yards. Thus, one would expect he’d have a monster game on the ground based on those first-half figures. His teammate Zamir White also saw his share of good runs, but they were wiped away due to penalties.
Coming into the second half, the Raiders chose an air attack over the answer that allowed them to capture a large lead. The ball simply transferred from Jacob’s hands on the ground to Derek Carr’s. This team played a full half and only scored three points, which is absolutely embarrassing when you have a terrific skill at running back. Had they continued the same game plan, Josh’s ground attack would have made a significant difference in the deciding factor of Sunday’s game.
So much for Jacobs’ predicted monster day, as he only managed to tally 69 rushing yards. There was another occasion during overtime when his feet could have made a difference. After all, the Raiders only needed five years to get into field goal range. Take a wild guess as to who didn’t have the ball in their hands.
Onto the Titans
The Raiders will next take on a Tennessee Titans team that is coming off a terrible loss to the Buffalo Bills. Both teams are aiming for their first win, but if Las Vegas wants to prove that they are serious about a postseason push, they must defeat the Titans. So, they must feed their starting running back. Let’s expect a monster ground game performance that results in a W.
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*Top Photo: Heidi Fang/Las Vegas Review-Journal