New Style Oakland Raiders: Allen Don't Ruin It!
Oakland Raiders radio announcer, Greg Papa, said he would have to check the play by play, but he thought the Raiders may have "Outblitzed the blitzers."
Well if that's the case, then I hope Oakland continues to blitz as much, because it led to six sacks. In the previous five weeks, the Oakland Raiders defense only had a combined nine sacks, and three of those were against San Diego opening night.
Asked if we could expect to see more blitzes as a result of the success on Sunday, head coach Tom Cable was reluctant to confirm. It sounded as though he would have to get the "okay" from the boss a little bit when he answered.
The entire game seemed as if when Al was dialing his owner to sideline phone, it was either disconnected, or the waterboy was the only one answering it.
To the coaches, I commend you for your bravery. To the head honcho, I say let it go Allen. This is the way the game is supposed to be played these days.
The Raiders defense held the second highest scoring team in the league out of the endzone. A team, Philadelphia, that was averaging 32 points per game. Philly had only one prior loss, to the highest scoring team in the NFL, the undefeated New Orleans Saints.
Oakland held the Eagles to 283 total yards, on 66 plays, an average of 4.28 yards per play.
Coming into the game, the Eagles were averaging 368.5 total yards on 62.25 plays per game, an average of 5.91 yards per play.
What makes it even more impressive is that they did it with no Nnamdi Asomugha for three and a half quarters. Nnamdi (eye) left the game early, and Stanford Routt made a case to get back in the good graces of Raider Nation in his absence.
This is a big "if" guys, so bear with me.
If Oakland's defense had played this entire season like they played yesterday, they would be ranked fifth in yards allowed per game, second in rushing yards allowed per game, second in points allowed per game, first in sacks with 36 (right now they are 6th with 15), and first in opponents third down percentage.
This leads us to another big "If" which is, if only they had help like this from the offense in every game this year.
The fact remains, however, that JaMarcus Russell has made great strides in the past three weeks of competition. He has completed 61.1 percent of his passes over the last two weeks, and started yesterday 10 for 12 with one touchdown, one interception (right through Louis Murphy's hands), and 139 yards.
Now if only his receivers would come along with him!
The offense picked up 18 first downs Sunday, their highest total since opening night against San Diego, when they managed 19. They have only averaged 10.8 on the season, going into the game.
Now the Raiders will need to capitalize on the high and carry the momentum over into next week against a New York Jets team that has struggled as of late.
The Jets started the season 3-0, but have faltered recently, losing three straight games.
It's back to the drawing board Oakland Raiders, no time to savor the victory. You won the game, yes, but it is over now. Time to move on the New York.
The Raiders should be careful attempting to use the same type of scheme on defense against the Jets offense. Although Sanchez has struggled under pressure, the Jets halfback tandem is one of the best in the NFL, and can break long gains with too much blitzing.
The Raiders should use more run blitzes, but definitely not forget blitzing altogether.
Put the phone down Allen Davis. Trust your coaches.
To everyone at B/R—I tried to tell you we had the best coaches in years.
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