Raiders report card: Grades on offense, defense in 34-3 loss to Jets


Raiders report card: Grades on offense, defense in 34-3 loss to Jets

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – If you playback the Raiders’ 34-3 loss to the New York Jets on Sunday, either on video or in your mind, your search for redeeming qualities will come up empty.

They’re virtually impossible to find.

The Silver and Black got worked in every phase of the game. They were plain awful in a game they surely wanted to win, where a victory would’ve greatly benefitted playoff hopes.

This loss is a minor setback, nothing more if the Raiders can get right quick. If it bleeds into future performances, though, their postseason hopes are shot.

Rebounding from such a disaster will be the primary focus now as they try to mitigate the side effects of this disaster.

Taken individually, this stands as the worst Raiders performance of the season. Yes, even worse than that Week 3 Vikings loss. Minnesota’s a legitimate contender. The Jets hadn’t beat anyone of substance in a long, long time.

Before y’all purge this out of the memory bank, let's grade the performance out in this week’s report card:

Rushing offense

The Raiders looked forward to facing the Jets’ top-ranked run defense all week. They wanted to pit strength against strength and prove the running operation could produce against anyone. That wasn’t the case. The Raiders averaged just 3.1 yards per carry, with 68 yards on 28 rushes. Josh Jacobs was barely involved, totaling 34 yards on just 10 attempts before getting pulled in the fourth quarter to preserve health.

Fullback Alec Ingold couldn’t convert a fourth-down-and-1. Little went right for the run game, which needs to improve down the stretch to get the offense going again.

Grade: F

Passing offense

Quarterback Derek Carr wasn’t nearly as bad as his 52.5 passer rating suggests. His receivers struggled securing passes, with three bad drops and several plays left unmade.

Carr was under some pressure but had time to work, though the Jets' coverage was tough. His pick-six was defensed, the ball getting tipped into the air for an easy interception. The Raiders have to do better through the air, especially with the run game struggling. There will be games that must be won with Carr and a receiver corps that hasn’t been dynamic or reliable. Tyrell Williams wasn’t great, and Zay Jones was a non-factor on a bad day for the skill positions.

Grade: F

Run defense

The Raiders' run defense has been steady most of the season and made life hard on Le’Veon Bell and the Jets' ground game. New York only averaged 2.9 yards per attempt, but still managed 88 yards on 30 attempts to keep the Jets offense balanced. It’s hard to ask for more against a back like Bell, even with his recent run of inefficiency. Quarterback Sam Darnold proved problematic with his feet, especially on his touchdown run.

Grade: C-minus

Pass defense

Darnold picked the Raiders defense apart. He threw for 315 yards and two touchdowns and a whopping 10.5 yards per pass attempt.

The Jets owned the Raiders by working laterally and on slants and crossing routes to gain separation. Robby Anderson was problematic. Bell was a factor in the passing game as shorter passes were turned into chunk yardage gains.

The Raiders couldn’t cover anyone in a three-touchdown, third-quarter barrage that put this game out of reach. This was a bad day for the secondary, with a ho-hum effort from the Raiders' pass rush. Clelin Ferrell didn’t do much, and Dion Jordon couldn't bring Darnold down in end zone for a safety.

Grade: F

Special teams

Daniel Carlson has missed four kicks in the past four games, including a field-goal attempt from 48 yards out Sunday that looked good off his foot and curved wide left.

The Raiders need more from their kicker, who hasn’t been consistent enough despite setting the franchise record for field-goal percentage last season. The Raiders also gave up a 26-yard punt return, something else that can’t happen in tight games or blowouts.

Grade: D-minus

[RELATED: Why controversial penalty on Hurst gave Raiders 'sinking feeling' vs. Jets]


The Raiders were terrible in a game they were favored to win. They knew the stakes and simply didn’t show up. They got beat in every phase. Now they have to hope another winning streak comes along. They certainly don’t want to miss the postseason by one game and look back with disdain at this opportunity missed.

Grade: F

Raiders inform NFL draft prospect of parking-ticket history at combine


Raiders inform NFL draft prospect of parking-ticket history at combine

NFL Scouting Combine interviews can be harsh, inappropriate and even downright weird. Ross Blacklock's interview with the Las Vegas Raiders this week in Indianapolis was revelatory. 

The TCU defensive tackle told reporters Thursday that the Raiders informed him he had 37 parking tickets he didn't know about during his time in Fort Worth. 

Blacklock offered a compelling reason for his lack of knowledge on the subject: He claimed the TCU athletic department handled each ticket on his behalf.

"I don't know how they get that," Blacklock shrugged. 

Thirty-seven of anything is a stunning number, let alone when you're counting parking citations. It clearly took the Mike Mayock-led Raiders brain trust aback enough to prompt them to bring it up in an interview, one of 45 they're allowed to conduct during the week in Indianapolis. Those interviews are limited to 18 minutes, so you wonder what question(s) didn't make the cut if Blacklock's ticket history did.

[RELATED: Hurts' talent entices, but should Raiders take chance on QB?] 

Those citations made the Raiders scratch their heads, as you might find yourself doing, too. Alas, it's difficult to envision Blacklock's previous fines dampening teams' enthusiasm for the 6-foot-3, 290-pound defensive lineman. NFL Media's Daniel Jeremiah ranked Blacklock No. 19 in his Top 50 and The Ringer's Danny Kelly slotted Blacklock at No. 38. The prospect didn't crack the first round of NBC Sports Bay Area's latest mock draft, but Blacklock likely won't have to wait longer than a day to hear his name called at the NFL draft in Vegas this April. 

Blacklock has talent, but the Raiders simply have bigger needs than along the interior of their defensive line to draft the former Horned Frog with one of two first-round picks. If the Silver and Black passes on the D-lineman, it won't be because of the parking tickets. 

NFL Draft 2020: Raiders should target these six players on Day 2

NFL Draft 2020: Raiders should target these six players on Day 2

All the talk surrounding the Raiders' 2020 NFL Draft plan revolves around their two first-round picks.

With picks No. 12 and No. 19, how will the Raiders build on the success of last year's draft class? Will they trade up for a quarterback? Take the best receiver available and whatever linebacker is left? Do what is necessary to put Isaiah Simmons in silver and black?

The questions are endless. But the Raiders' draft class truly will come together on Day 2 of the draft, when they have three third-round picks. That's enough ammo to move up into Round 2 or select three players who can contribute immediately to the up-and-coming Raiders. Yes, they could take a flier on Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm or try and develop the enticing talent that is Jalen Hurts, but they have many needs outside of quarterback. 

With the Raiders getting a good look at the best the draft has to offer this week at the NFL Scouting Combine, let's look at six Day 2 prospects for the Raiders to target.

Marlon Davidson, DE, Auburn

Davidson is fast rising so he likely will be gone by the time the Raiders go on the clock in Round 3.

The 6-foot-3, 303-pound defensive end has an impressive array of skills that most NFL teams would love to have on their roster. He has heavy hands and a quick first step. He played outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme on The Plains but might be better suited for an interior role at the next level.

He's a high upside guy who has the ability to help the Raiders in one of their biggest areas of need.

K.J. Hill, WR, Ohio State

The Raiders need more than one wide receiver. While they likely will land one of CeeDee Lamb, Jerry Jeudy or Henry Ruggs, the Silver and Black need more weapons for whoever the quarterback is.

This is a deep and talented wide receiver class, so the Raiders could go a number of ways.

I'll highlight Hill because he's a great route-runner with solid hands. He had a down senior season but was an explosive weapon for Dwayne Haskins two years ago.

He'd be a great addition as Gruden looks to build a more dynamic offense.

Troy Dye, LB. Oregon

We all know the Raiders need linebacker help. Whether they trade up to draft Simmons, take Patrick Queen or Kenneth Murray or avoid going linebacker in Round 1, they need to build depth at the position. 

Dye was a four-year starter at Oregon, whose leadership helped keep the program from nosediving. 

He's an athletic, rangy linebacker with the explosiveness to be an impact NFL starter. He needs to work on his play processing and taking better angles in space.

Kenny Willekes, EDGE, Michigan State

The Spartan defensive end has an extremely high floor. He's a very competitive guy with a high motor who would thrive under Gruden.

Willekes has a variety of pass-rush moves and is a stout run defender. 

He racked up 47.5 tackles for loss and 22 sacks during his career at Michigan State and would be a solid addition to the Raiders' defensive end rotation. 

James Proche, WR, SMU

Proche is a name that you don't hear a lot in this loaded class, but he could be the steal of the draft.

At 5-foot-10, the SMU slot receiver has big hands for his size (9 5/8). Those hands were golden during his time at SMU as Proche basically caught anything thrown in his zip code. He has no problem snagging balls at high velocity with one a hand or in the air or off balance.

He's not the fastest or strongest receiver, but he's a guy who could be a valuable weapon in a four-wide set.

[RELATED: Brady-to-Raiders becoming more realistic with latest rumors]

Davon Hamilton, DT, Ohio State

Hamilton is 6-foot-4 and 310 pounds. The Raiders are in need of a big body who can disrupt offenses up the middle.

He's an outstanding run defender and found success against constant double teams while at Ohio State.

His pass-rush skill needs some polishing, but you can't teach size or power. Hamilton has both and the quickness to boot.