This game was also important for both teams. For the Oakland Raiders it was a shot at getting one game away from the Kansas city Chiefs who currently lead the division. For Jacksonville, it was an opportunity to remain on top of the AFC South.
Defensively it seemed the Oakland Raiders had the upper hand as the defense continued to pound away at David Garrard. For many fans, it was awesome to see the Raiders on top 17-7 at the half. But the lead would be lost in the second half as mistakes began to plague the Raiders.
Although QB Jason Campbell ( 324 passing yards) and Darren McFadden (123 yards rushing / 86 receiving yards w/ 3 TDs !!) played with great zeal and some mind blowing runs, it was not enough to get the win in Jacksonville.
The defense of the Oakland Raiders was missing MLB Rolando McClain and this may have been pivotal for the Oakland Raiders. As for the front four lineman, who I will name the "Fearsome Four ", they played hard and well. In fact they shut down the running of Jacksonville and overturned the ball when the Oakland Raiders needed it.
The defensive lineup included Matt Shaughnessy, Lamaar Houston, Richard Seymour and Tommy Kelly. Mike Mitchell and Tyvon Branch also played well.
Had LB Rolando McClain played today would the Oakland Raiders have won?
Tyvon Branch caused a huge turnover when he striped the ball and it was turned over to Oakland.Overall the defense played decent but it was special teams this week that let the team down when at the end of the game with a little more than minute the Jaguars were able to run it down the field to the Oakland thirty.
The Oakland Raiders started the game by getting the first TD. This was a short pass to Darren McFadden who then ran it in for his first TD of the game.
Oakland Raiders head coach Tom Cable handled the time well in the first half and even called a timeout prior to the Louis Murphy TD. This gave the Raiders time to regroup and adjust. Jacoby Ford however had a miserable day and fumbled the ball the give the Jaguars the turnover and it led to a TD.
This game could easily have been won by the Oakland Raiders however mistakes hurt the team and eventually caught up at towards the end of the game.
One mistake that should have been prevented was the coverage of Michael Huff as he allowed a 48 yards TD to get by him. Its pretty obvious that CB Nnamndi Asomugha needs a CB ( I wish we still had Charles Woodson) to compliment him and his great coverage ability.
QB Jason Campbell played well. There was a few times when he held on to the ball too long but overall he looks improved and should be able to win next weeks game against the Denver Broncos. The question there is, can the Raiders repeat the magnificent win (59-10) they had when the teams last met? I would have to say "yes" based on the play we saw Sunday.
Will RB Darren McFadden make it to the pro bowl this year?
Had the Raiders won this game they would have put themselves one game behind the leading AFC West Kansas City Chiefs who played without QB Matt Cassell. Cassell had an emergency appendectomy and the team was scoreless against the San Diego Chargers in today's match up.
RB Darren McFadden had a spectacular day as he made three TDs. The second was against former Oakland Raider Kirk Morrison who was basically torched by Darren McFaddens running.
Lastly was the performance of backup QB Kyle Boller. All I can say is that this writer and fan, well..I just wanted to throw up. Kyle Boller gave the Jaguars another three points when he threw an interception. The ball was horribly thrown behind TE Zach Miller. I do mean horrible. Both he and WR Chaz Schilens should be gone by next season. C'mon Al lets let them two go and get another CB !
Although the interception gave the Jaguars the lead, Darren McFadden once again bolstered through the Jacksonville lineup and scored another TD. Darren McFadden had three TDs against the Jaguars and is playing up to expectation. Imagine what could have transpired if the Oakland Raiders had fewer mistakes today.
So are the Oakland Raiders out of contention? At his point, heck NO! The Silver and Black cannot afford to lose any more games. The Oakland Raiders need to defeat the Denver Broncos again and hopefully Rolando McClain will be back. The Oakland Raiders also need the complete team healthy for these last games if they are to make it into the playoffs.
How many games can the Oakland Raiders win if the team can stay healthy ?
It was really disappointing top see the Oakland Raiders lose this game and was reminiscent of the Arizona Cardinals game. Mistakes can hurt a team and today the Oakland Raiders had one mistake to many thanks to special teams.
As I mentioned, it was hard to take this loss when the Oakland Raiders had the lead the majority of the time. They were absolutely dominating and are a total turn around team from last year as they shared TDs with the Jaguars. There were a few so-called fans thought they would only win 5 games this season. I see 9-7.
But its not over for them yet and as part of a determined Raidernation I still see that silver streak. Oakland Raiders, you played well today, but next time and this week , brush up on the mistakes.
The main highlight is that the Oakland Raiders are getting better. Its great that they are 4-0 against the AFC West teams! They have some solid players and only need a few replacements. As I had mentioned before, there were some including the media that felt the Raiders would be the same team that played last season (JaMarcus who?). No one took the Oakland Raiders serious and the start of the season was just bizarre with the QB issue.
I would guess that Tom Cable will be there next year. Tom Cable has more than proven his commitment to the Oakland Raider organization. The Oakland Raiders will have a 9-7 season as predicted by myself at the start of the season. Raiders will defeat the Broncos 38-10