Football is back! Sunday football is back & I couldn’t be more happier. Every game from week one had headlines, rookies starting and plenty of marquee games. Every game was pretty competitive but none more than the Saints vs.Raiders. This game went down to the wire in what many predicted to be an automatic win for the sliver & black but was soon turned into a fiery shootout with plenty of big plays and “OH MY” moments. The Raiders orchestrated a 2nd half come from behind victory beating the New Orleans Saints 35-34 with what may be just the gutsiest call I’ve ever seen with my two eyes in recent memory and its only week one. Watching this game was stressful & exciting. This gives us as fans something to look forward to as the season progresses but; with plenty of things to work on. Based on Sundays performance we still have ways to go.
Derek Carr played an exceptional game on Sunday showcasing poise, patience & leadership. From throwing in the pocket or hurdling players for first downs, he did everything he could to deliver that victory on Sunday for the raiders. He was precise with his throws and completed 63% of his passes going for 24 of 38 attempts & 319 yards with 1 touchdown. Not to leave out his level of intelligence by driving his team down the field in the final minutes of the game for the go ahead winning TD drive. The rushing game as a whole was pretty solid. RB Latavius Murray carried the ball for 59 yards on 14 yards (4.2 avg) and had a TD as well by barreling over a defender in the end zone. There is a lot of pressure of Murray to replay this year what he did last year so seeing him run was great. Undrafted RB Jalen Richard provided the biggest play of the game for the Raiders in just his first carry of his young career. Toting the ball for a total of 84 yards rushing + a 75 yard run where he showed exactly why Head Coach Del Rio is high on this guy. Fellow rookie RB Deandre Washington provided some rushing yards as well as FB Jamize Olawale who brang a TD to the table. The WR core provided consistent play just like they did all year last year. Cooper went over 100 yards receiving & Michael Crabtree provided a a solid 87 yards receiving + a huge2-point conversion to put the Raiders ahead late in the fourth.
The defense didn’t do much to help in this win by allowing the Saints to score 34 points but it was against a future Hall of Famer in Drew Brees. Free agent CB Signee Sean Smith was benched in this game for nickel corner DJ Hayden who also struggled in coverage. The D-line was basically non-existent when it came to getting a pass rush. Newly Acquired LB/DE Bruce Irvin provided a strip Sack fumble that was recovered by rookie DE Jihad Ward but outside of that; there wasn’t much to rave about. Special teams were solid as well.
Overall the game was exciting to watch and if you like high scoring games then this was the game for you but for the raiders to be what they expect this year, the defense must pull it together. A win is a win and I will take that any day of the week. GO RAIDERS!!!