Three quick takeaways from Raiders' 26-10 loss to Chargers


Three quick takeaways from Raiders' 26-10 loss to Chargers


CARSON -- The Raiders finally won a game last week. It was a nail biter for sure when the Raiders finally finished strong.

Turns out that game was an individual entity, not something that kick-started a season turnaround.

The encore might’ve been the Raiders’ worst performance to date, and eventually became a 26-10 loss to the Chargers on Sunday at StubHub Center.

The Raiders proved deficient in every phase, and were flat beat by a good Chargers team.

Here are three quick takeaways from this result:

Blown out by the better team

The Raiders played four close games with only one victory to show for it. They hung tough against all comers, including a Rams team that is a bonafide juggernaut. They blew second-half leads in each one but struggled to finish strong.

That wasn’t the case Sunday. The Raiders were blown out by a superior team and couldn't bridge the talent gap clear in most contests.

The Raiders went down 20-3 late in the third quarter, dominated on most fronts by an explosive offense and a defense making do without Joey Bosa.

The season’s in peril -- not that expectations were high to begin with -- at 1-4 with a trip to London next week. Things could get worse before they get better, especially if the Raiders keep making similar mistakes from week to week.

Big plays still a big problem

Allowing plays of 20 yards or more have plagued the Raiders all season. They cost the Raiders a win in Denver and again in Miami, and they made last week's Browns showdown close well into overtime.

That has frustrated defensive coordinator Paul Guenther to no end, and he has vowed to fix the problem. One issue: He might not have enough defensive talent to stem the tide.

He definitely doesn’t have enough speed on the second level to prevent significant yards after the catch. The Silver and Black gave up three 20-plus plays in the first half alone, with countless chunk plays that didn't quite reach the mark.

The defense can be effective at times, forcing three-and-outs on a regular basis. Lapses have proven costly, and make life hard on the Raiders' offense.

Ill-timed turnovers

The Raiders were down 17 points in the third quarter, but they used a nice length-of-the-field drive to set up an ideal scoring chance. They had a first-and-goal at the 1-yard line -- and chose a play-action pass that was intercepted.

Raiders quarterback Derek Carr has thrown three interceptions in the end zone over the first five games. That’s as costly as it gets, and his latest red-zone pick put this game to sleep at the start of the fourth quarter.

Carr’s throw was ill advised. There’s no doubt about that. Lee Smith was the primary target and never opened up, so Carr threw across his body for Derek Carrier, who was covered well. He never saw Chargers defensive end Melvin Ingram, who easily picked off the pass.

Mistakes happen. That one was on Carr. But one has to wonder why Marshawn Lynch doesn’t get the football three times from the 1-yard line. The veteran running back was visibly upset after the turnover, faking to throw his helmet after the play.

Carr now has thrown picks in the end zone against the Rams, Dolphins and Chargers, which hurts a Raiders team that can’t afford mistakes like that.

Derek Carr might not go with Raiders to Las Vegas, Mike Florio says


Derek Carr might not go with Raiders to Las Vegas, Mike Florio says

The Raiders have one final season at the Coliseum before they move to Las Vegas in 2020, but will Derek Carr still be the starting quarterback when they get to Sin City?

After ranking in the bottom third of the league in total offense last year, Oakland has been quite busy this offseason, acquiring players to help bolster its offensive attack.

The Raiders traded for Antonio Brown and signed fellow wide receiver Tyrell Williams in free agency. They also used a first-round draft pick on running back Josh Jacobs, and signed massive offensive tackle Trent Brown, who just won a Super Bowl protecting Tom Brady for the New England Patriots.

Given all of these additions on the offensive side of the ball, ProFootballTalk's Mike Florio believes this will be a make-or-break season for Carr, and doubts he'll still be a member of the team when they move to Vegas if he disappoints.

"Think of it this way," Florio wrote. "If the chemistry experiment/Frankenstein monster that starts and ends with [Antonio Brown] fails, whose fault will it be? Brown’s? Nope. [Jon] Gruden’s? Nope. [Mike] Mayock’s? Nope. If the Raiders fail to get the most out of Antonio Brown, it will be the fault of the guy who will be under immense pressure to deliver the ball with the same underrated precision that Ben Roethlisberger delivered it for nine years in Pittsburgh.

[RELATED: Watch Raiders' Brown do insane agility drill involving brick]

"If Derek Carr can step up," Florio continued, "great for him and the Raiders. If he can’t, he’ll quite possibly be the highest-profile member of the organization to not enjoy the freedom from paying state income tax that goes with moving from California to Nevada."

The fact that Gruden and Mayock inherited Carr -- as opposed to drafting him -- seems relevant here. If he can't take a step forward with a significantly improved offense around him, the Raiders might just be debuting a new stadium and a new quarterback a little more than a year from now.

Watch Raiders' Antonio Brown do insane agility drill involving a brick

Watch Raiders' Antonio Brown do insane agility drill involving a brick

Every professional athlete has their crazy workout that most average humans can't do.

Warriors superstar Steph Curry has this ridiculous dribbling drill that involves tennis balls and strobe glasses.

For new Oakland Raiders wide receiver Antonio Brown, his latest drill involves a brick.

Yes, a brick.

With the assistance of a trainer, Brown snatches the brick out of the air and alternates hands. While he's grabbing the brick, he's reaching behind his back with the other hand and slapping his trainer's hand.

Brown posted the same video to his Instagram account but with a different message: "The product is coming September just wait on it..........."

The Raiders open the 2019 regular season at home on Sept. 9 against the Denver Broncos.

This isn't the first crazy workout video Brown has posted this month. Last week, Brown published video of himself catching footballs while wearing strobe glasses and standing on a balancing ball.

Brown also posted a few workout videos on his Instagram stories.

[RELATED: Brown, Raiders receivers stand out]

The Raiders acquired Brown from the Pittsburgh Steelers back in March. It was the first in a series of moves made by Oakland in an attempt to bolster the offense and rebound from a 4-12 campaign in 2018.

Brown looks like he's ready for the start of the season, let alone training camp later this month. September can't get here soon enough.