By the numbers: An inside look at Terrelle Pryor


By the numbers: An inside look at Terrelle Pryor

Aug. 21, 2011RAIDERS PAGE RAIDERS VIDEOCSNCalifornia.comHere is a look at Terrelle Pryor, the newest quarterback onthe Raiders roster, according to the numbers:0 quarterbacks ranked ahead of Pryor in the high school classof 2008, according to ESPNU. Only three total players (Da'Quan Bowers, Julio Jones, Will Hill) were ranked ahead of Pryor in the entire country.2 bowl games that Pryor won while at Ohio State the 2010Rose Bowl and the 2011 Sugar Bowl.3, 4 rounds in which the Raiders do not currently have a draft pickin 2012. They forfeited their third-round pick for selecting Pryor in the thirdround of the supplemental draft on Monday. Their fourth-round pick was traded away in theJason Campbell deal prior to last season.4.41 seconds it took Pryor, unofficially, to run the40-yard dash at his pro day on Saturday. 5 games this NFL season that Pryor will be suspended for.He has stated that he will not appeal the suspension.6-foot-5, 232 pounds The height and weight for Pryor, whocould end up moving to a new position in the pros. Tight end and wide receiverare among the possibilities.6-foot-5, 230 pounds The listed height and weight forJason Campbell, who is entering his seventh season as an NFL quarterback, hissecond with the Raiders.8 cars, according to Sports Illustrated, thatPryor drove during his three years at Ohio State.17 NFL teams that attended Pryors pro day near hishometown in Jeannette, Pa.31-4 Pryors record as the Buckeyes starting quarterback.57 career passing touchdowns for Pryor at Ohio State, tied for theschool record.2,164 rushing yards for Pryor at Ohio State, a schoolrecord for a quarterback.2,772 yards Pryor threw for during his junior season atOhio State. He threw 27 touchdowns and only 11 interceptions that year, while running for754 yards and four scores.20,000-40,000 the range of dollars earned by Pryor forvarious memorabilia signings during his time at Ohio State, according to a former friend ofPryors who spoke with ESPN.

Why firing Ken Norton Jr. won't solve the Raiders' bigger, deeper problems

Why firing Ken Norton Jr. won't solve the Raiders' bigger, deeper problems

ALAMEDA – Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio was twice asked about making in-season changes at his Monday press conference.

He wouldn’t rule it out. Del Rio said he would do anything necessary to help the team “win now,” and later said "we're not getting into staff questions this week."

Then he fired Ken Norton Jr. the next day, hoping the dismissal will provide a spark.

It might. More likely, it might not do enough.

It is a shot across the bow, a signal that subpar play won't be tolerated. 

“We played under our talent level,” defensive tackle Justin Ellis said, “Those things come with consequences.”

New play caller John Pagano has a unique style in that he knows how to bring creative and/or well-disguised pressure and exploit weak links, but he won’t be using his system. He’ll still be working within Norton/Del Rio’s existing scheme and, more importantly, he’s still playing chess with existing, often inferior pieces. The Raiders understand that, and likely won't judge him on this final stretch alone. 

Why? The defense doesn’t have enough talent in the secondary, the interior defensive line or the inside linebacker corps. That’s not on Norton or Pagano.

Pagano can’t do a thing about an offense struggling mightily to catch passes, block consistently and let plays develop downfield.

The Raiders have some major talent problems, with rush and coverage rarely working together as desired. That, and some uninspired schematics, have produced awful statistics.

The Raiders don’t have an interception, and are the first team to go 10 games without a pick. They’re on track to have the second-worst opposing completion percentage (72.3) and passer rating (113.3) in NFL history, per the Associated Press.

They’re also last in sacks for the second straight year, with just 14 this season despite having reigning defensive player of the year Khalil Mack.

They're thin because last year's second and third round picks, Jihad Ward and Shilique Calhoun aren't contributing. This year's draft class had to make an immediate impact, but Gareon Conley played two games, Obi Melifonwu spent eight games on IR and Eddie Vanderdoes as underwhelmed after a promising start.

Highly paid free agents haven't performed well enough, and many could be shown the door.

It’s possible roughly half of the starting lineup doesn’t return next season, with Sean Smith, Reggie Nelson, Bruce Irvin and NaVorro Bowman likely out the door as free agents or roster cuts.

In sum, this isn’t all Norton’s fault.

He was, however, the easiest cut. You can’t fire players en masse during the year, and Pagano was an easy replacement without disrupting the position coaches. Pagano has extensive experience calling plays. He was the then-San Diego Chargers’ defensive coordinator from 2012-16.

Norton wasn’t an innovative play caller. He was passed over for coordinator jobs while serving as Seattle’s linebackers coach, after Gus Bradley and Dan Quinn were hired as head coaches. Del Rio, who played with Norton in Dallas back from 1989-91, hired Norton shortly after being hired by the Raiders.

The Raiders' defense has never been good under Norton/Del Rio, and Norton was on a hot seat most of last season. It was surprising when Pagano was hired that Norton was retained and allowed to continue despite underwhelming performance.

Norton was immensely popular in the locker room, especially with members of the front seven. Mack and Irvin in particular were Norton guys. Norton and Irvin go way back to Irvin’s Seattle days, where the coach helped players get and stay on the right path.

That’s why this firing was deeply felt on Tuesday. The players were told in a Tuesday meeting, following a walk-through focused on corrections from Sunday’s New England loss.

"The axe came down on everybody," free safety Reggie Nelson said. "Everybody felt it in this building. Players, we love Norton, regardless. Unfortunately, the production wasn't a high standard this year and it's a production league. He's not playing. We are.”

The Raiders are 4-6, and can’t afford to lose many more games. They might need to be perfect down the stretch. That’s a tough ask for a team that’s been woefully inconsistent on both sides. This team was always expected to shoot for the middle and have a potentially great offense score points by the bushel.

The offense has been disappointing, performing far below its pay grade and talent level. There was no movement on that side of the ball. The Raiders hope, with fingers firmly crossed, this change provide the spark necessary to create turnovers and quarterback pressure than has been lacking in a disastrous season to this point.

Raiders fire defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr.

Raiders fire defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr.

Ken Norton Jr.'s time with the Raiders is up.

With the team underperforming, Oakland has fired Norton as the defensive coordinator, the team announced Tuesday afternoon. John Pagano will handle the play calling duties when the Raiders take on the Broncos this Sunday.

Head coach Jack Del Rio issued the following statement regarding the news:

“After careful thought, I have made a difficult decision to part ways with Ken Norton, Jr. as defensive coordinator. I have the utmost respect for Ken as a person and as a coach, but I feel that moving John Pagano into the play-calling role will best utilize his wealth of experience. I appreciate Ken’s passion and commitment to the Raiders since coming aboard and wish him the best going forward.”

The Raiders defense under Norton this season ranks 26th in the NFL in yards allow per game (367.0), is allowing 24.7 points per game and has yet to record an interception through 10 games.

"We played under our talent level. Those things come with consequences," defensive lineman Justin Ellis told reporters shortly after the news broke.

"The axe fell on all of us. We love Coach Norton. We didn’t want to see this happen," safety Reggie Nelson said.

Norton joined Del Rio's staff prior to the 2015 season.