At 1-3, the Josh McDaniels-led Raiders are facing adversity right in the face. So, where does the team go from here? Well, there are two routes. The squad can dig themselves out of this hole, or this 2023 campaign will spiral out of control.
Former NFL linebacker A.J. Hawk believes the Silver and Black need urgency this week to save their season. Additionally, all eyes are on McDaniels to find a solution, which could lie in the team’s big-play ability. Las Vegas has big-play offensive threats; figuring out ways to get them the football is the challenge.
There’s plenty of news surrounding the Raiders after a disappointing Week 4 loss, so let’s get into the latest.
A.J. Hawk preaches urgency from the Raiders heading into Week 5
The Raiders’ season could be determined by the outcome of their home game against the Green Bay Packers on “Monday Night Football.” A win puts them at 2-3 and builds positive vibes to climb back to a .500 record. However, a loss to Jordan Love and Co. could mean it’s time to wave the white flag.
So, this week’s preparation will be vital heading into the matchup against the Packers. As a result, Hawk stated that whatever the coaching staff needs to do to salvage this season must happen fast.
“Whatever needs to happen to fix it, which the coaches, I’m sure, are all scrambling to try to figure that out,” Hawk told Pat McAfee on Tuesday’s edition of The Pat McAfee Show. “It has to happen quick. We know you do this a couple more weeks in a row [and] you let a couple more games get away from you. It’s not looking good. It’s looking like a tough season for the rest of the year, so I don’t know what they need to do.”
The team has suffered three straight losses after a Week 1 win over the Denver Broncos. Furthermore, these defeats have come in head-scratching and disappointing fashion.
In the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, McDaniels opted for a field goal instead of going for the game-tying touchdown while trailing 23-15 late in the game. Then, the loss to Los Angeles saw rookie quarterback Aidan O’Connell throw an interception as the team knocked on the end zone to tie the game late in the fourth quarter.
Las Vegas, under Josh McDaniels, struggles with a lack of big plays
How exactly are the Raiders going to solve their woes aside from having a sense of urgency? Well, the answer could lie in Las Vegas’ struggle to pull off big gains during a game. NFL writer Marcus Mosher published a stat on Twitter ranking all the 32 teams’ big plays over four weeks.
So, where does the Silver and Black stack up? They’re tied for last place with the Cincinnati Bengals with 11 big plays. The Raiders have gained 10+ yards on 3 runs and 8 passes for 20+ yards.
To beat the Packers, the Raiders should focus on big play schemes. Las Vegas has the threats in Adams, Jacobs, and even Jakobi Meyers, who has shown he can be reliable for an explosive play.
The question for Raiders fans is whether the team needs more changes than just big plays to salvage their season against Green Bay. Are some of you ready to throw in the towel on this season? Let us know.
*Top Photo: Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports