In their farewell to Oakland, the Raiders failed to send the faithful hope happy and thank the city. In losing 20-16, the team found new and otherwordly painful ways on losing football games. Around team dignitaries and one of the most loyal fanbases in sports, the Silver and Black brought their Oakland tenure to a painful and utterly disappointing conclusion.
Late in the game, it appeared as though a twelve-yard scramble by Derek Carr would seal the deal. For the fleeting moment, fans saw what they always knew Derek Carr could be. With decisive running and purpose, Carr appeared to gain the first and stay in bounds. He looked like the mobile quarterback everyone knew he tested at the Combine.
Not Their Fault
Granted, the referees missed Derek Carr going down in bounds. As a result, the clock stopped and the Jaguars did not need to waste their last timeout. This is not the reason the team lost. While the referees, around the league, continue to underperform, they did not coast Oakland the game.
Tougher Than Most
Playing with a broken shoulder plate sounds unbearable. Playing running back with Josh Jacobs’ style seems unthinkable. Jacobs fought through what could only be described as unbearable pain to play Sunday. In toting the ball 24 times for 89 yards will quietly rank as one of the toughest performances many will soon forget. Now, with the season lost, the Raiders need to do Josh Jacobs a favor and rest him. Two games and incosequential carries do nothing to help anyone. For his own safety, Jacobs needs to sit.
After emerging from halftime with a 16-3 lead, the Raiders could not stop Jacksonville when it mattered most. First, the tackling looked atrocious. Additionally, the coverage fell apart. Rookie Gardner Minshew found Chris Conley twice for second half scores. While the Raiders lack defensive talent in a multitude of areas, Paul Guenther needs to be held accountable for the continued failures of the defense.
The offense did no favors for the defense. Forty-five second half passing yards and stalled drives saw the Raiders score zero points. Again, a second half of failed drives and abysmal playcalling kneecapped this entire team. Between Tyrell Williams dropping passes or other wideouts failing to get open, another final thirty minutes of atrociousness.
More than football. The Raiders deprived the Oakland crowd a fitting goodbye. Through losses, Andrew Walter under center, a general feeling od sadness, fans showed up. Year after year, fans treated the Raiders better than the team did them. With the lights out on the Coliseum, the Raiders leave town not with a smile, but heads held low. Those fans, from British Columbia, San Leandro, Maryland, Los Angeles and London deserved better. Flight schedules, hotel rooms, ATMs all needed their attention. Yet, the defense could not stop a rookie quarterback on a 4-9 team from scoring. More importantly, the formerly accurate and aggressive offense did not generate a single point. To all of the fans that endured that embarrassment, you deserved far better.