Bucs use 17 big plays to embarrass Raiders


Bucs use 17 big plays to embarrass Raiders


OAKLAND -- In the smoky wreckage of the Raiders 42-32 loss to Doug Martin and various other Tampa Bay Buccaneers, head coach Dennis Allen kept going on and on and on about execution, as though he was considering it as a midweek drill.His problem in that case, though, would have been in amassing sufficient ammunition. When a team loses like this, the blame is thick, wide, and applies easily.Mostly, though, Allens specialty, the defensive side of the ball, is the reason the Raiders got chased out of their own building Sunday. Tactically, strategically, technically and chronically, Oaklands defenders did little to earn the name.And while the offense had its issues (Carson Palmers three interceptions, two born of sheer Palmerian impatience), and is going to have more if the news on the ankles of Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson is bad, the Raiders shamed themselves Sunday because of atrocious tackling and pursuit, which remain two of the most important things a defense can do.We didnt tackle well, is how Allen put it. Weve done a good job of tackling but today was not a good day.Then again, watching your garage burn down is not a good day, too.Martins 251 rushing yards and four scores were plenty in and of themselves, and it was only Tampa coach Greg Schianos conservatism down the stretch that kept those numbers from being more jaw-dropping.I kind of stumbled on a few early, and my coach was like, Get your head up, get your head up, Martin said. So I started to pick my head up after I was stumbling. What follows the head is the body, so I just kept going and I was on to the third level.The fourth level, of course, being Oakland International Airport.But the more elemental truth is this: Of the 63 offensive plays the Buccaneers ran Sunday, 17 went for 10 or more yards. Thats 27 percent of their plays from scrimmage. How they only ended up with 515 total yards based on that number alone is stunning.And not all 17 of those plays were Martins doing, which means this was not a matter of one man beating 11, as much as fantasy blokes might paint it as such. From the games first play, when Tampa quarterback Josh Freeman scrambled into wide open prairie for 11 yards, the Raiders gave up huge hunks of yardage to a multiplicity of Buccaneers. Martin for 12.
Freeman to former Stanford defensive end Erik Lorig for 11.
Freeman to wide receiver Vincent Jackson for 64, minus 15 for Jacksons taunting of Tyvon Branch.
Martin for 13.
Freeman to Jackson for 20 and the first touchdown.
Freeman for 11.
Freeman to tight end Dallas Clark for 10.
Freeman to Williams for 22.
Freeman to Clark for 12.
Martin for 10.
Freeman to running back D.J. Ware for 12.
Martin for 45 and the second touchdown.
Freeman to wide receiver Mike Williams for 37.
Martin for 67 and the fourth touchdown.
Martin for 70 and the fifth touchdown.
Freeman to tight end Nate Byham for 10.Thats 437 of the 515 yards, an average of 25.7 yards PER PLAY. Next to that, Palmers performance, which probably infuriated more people than it should have given the fact that the Raiders played most of the game without McFadden and half the fourth quarter without Goodson, was downright incandescent.Now you may be comfortable with the idea that this was just one of those days, but they play Baltimore (Ray Rice) next, and before seasons end still must face Cincinnati (BenJarvus Green-Ellis), Cleveland (Trent Richardson), Denver (Willis McGahee), Carolina (Cam Newton) and San Diego (Ryan Mathews). They all rank 22nd or higher (Martin was 11th), and theyve all had or nearly had 100 yards in a game.In short, there may be other days that approach this one not 251 yards worth, but enough to make an impression on a team whose latest impression is Doug Martins foot on their faces.And therein lies the true and enduring problem. The Raiders changed a lot of things over the off-season, and they manically emphasized defending the run. As a result, they ranked in or near the top 10 in total yards, yards per carry, and various lesser run numbers. After Sunday, they went from a thoroughly acceptable 3.9 yards per rush to 4.7, which would now place them 29th.In one day.In other words, this is still a work in progress, and slower progress than one would think. Many changes remain to be made before this ocean liner completes its U-turn, and Sunday was a 40-piece brass bands proof of that.And yes, execution still sounds like a pretty good idea. No matter how you define it.

Notes: Del Rio wants Raiders to reflect inward after ugly loss in Washington

Notes: Del Rio wants Raiders to reflect inward after ugly loss in Washington

ALAMEDA – Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio gives his players Monday off. Tuesday is generally an in-season rest day, but the Silver and Black get the day after a game to be away from the facility.

“There’s some raw emotion on the day after the game, so I think that helps you maybe teach a little better,” Del Rio said in his Monday press conference. Things need to be taught. That’s one of the biggest benefits to the structure.”

Del Rio called this a "miserable Monday," where his team will be widely criticized for a disatrous 27-10 loss to Washington. 

They’ll spend one more day reviewing it during what Del Rio dubs “Tell the Truth Tuesday." It won't be terribly fun, especially after getting outplayed and outcoached.

It’s a day for corrections, development and one last look back before pouring focus forward the Denver Broncos.

The Washington loss only counts as one. It can become two if that game’s hangover lasts all week. Del Rio is good keeping his players locked on the next task.

He’ll also have to keep them from pressing like they did in Washington.

“We were really looking for that spark, probably pressing early in the game,” Del Rio said. “Offensively, we got out of rhythm. We threw, in the first four drives, two picks and two three-and-outs. We weren’t in rhythm, obviously. They executed. It really wasn’t anything overwhelming. They played some solid, basic coverage and we didn’t execute and they did. It’s just one of those days. It’s an opportunity to learn. Recognize what went wrong.”

Explaining what went awry will be key this Tuesday. There was a lot. Quarterback Derek Carr tried to put the team on his back, to no avail. Carr had a rare dud, and took full responsibility for the loss after the game.

“That’s good for all of us,” Del Rio said. “To me, that’s what we need to do. It starts with me, obviously there are a lot of things that each guy can look at and say ‘this is what I can do better.’ That’s what I want. I want us to reflect inward and see how we can do things ourselves better and then pull together as a team. Stick together, pull together and go forward. That’s what you do.”

Keeping an eye on Crabtree:
Receiver Michael Crabtree took a big hit to the chest from Montae Nicholson on Sunday night and did not return to the game. That leaves his availability in some question.

“We’ll take a close look at him and make sure there’s nothing significant going on,” Del Rio said. “I know the doctors cleared for him to travel with us coming back which was good. He took a good shot. It was a clean hit, a good shot. Crab’s a tough guy so I’m sure he’ll bounce back.”

More Marshawn?
Raiders lead running back Marshawn Lynch only touched the ball seven times at Washington. He had six carries for 18 yards and an eight-yard catch. That isn’t enough for this Raiders offense to function well, but Sunday was a unique circumstance. The Raiders fell behind early and couldn’t sustain drives.

“When you have as many three-and-outs and you only take 50 snaps of offense, you can talk about all the things that you left on the drawing board that you would have liked to have gotten to,” Del Rio said. “Certainly, there was a lot of offense that we had designed to get to, including touches for him, but 0-for-11 on third down says all you need to know. When you’re talking about, does your running back get a chance to run it as much as you’d like, when you’re 0-for-11 on third down you’re not going to get a lot of opportunities anywhere with your offense.”

Norman targets Crabtree, Cooper in postgame rant after Raiders loss


Norman targets Crabtree, Cooper in postgame rant after Raiders loss

Josh Norman isn’t afraid to speak his mind, especially about opposing receivers who he feels slight him in some way.

Raiders wideouts Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper were his latest targets, subjects of a postgame rant following Washington’s 27-10 victory over the Silver and Black.

Washington’s premier cornerback said the duo talked trash to him during pregame warmups about big numbers they planned to post against Washington’s secondary.

That didn’t happen in an awful day for the Raiders offense. Crabtree had one seven-yard catch on the night and two drops. Cooper was even worse, with a six-yard catch on five targets and a crucial drop.

That gave Norman license to fire at the typically reserved Raiders receiving corps. Norman says he took the pregame exchange personally.

"What was personal, other than them getting their tails whupped?" Norman said, with quotes via "I mean, first and foremost, you don't come up in here and say what you're going to put up on somebody. Two hundred yards? (Crabtree) didn't catch two balls. He only caught one, huh? So please, whatever you do, do not run your mouth if you're a wide receiver and expect to show up on Sundays, because I'm telling you, we are here and we are waiting.

"Don't come out here and tell me what you're going to do. Show me. You're going to have to run through me to get that."

It’s hard to imagine the quiet, often stoic Cooper inciting a rivalry with words. Crabtree has had a previous squabble with Seahawks corner Richard Sherman back when he was with the 49ers, but even he's typically quiet during the course of a game.

"Sherm was right,” Norman said. “(Crabtree) ain't going to say he's sorry, but I don't think he's sorry," Norman said. "He sucked, to be honest with you. You don't come out here and do that extra stuff, man. We don't play that out here."

Norman had several public exchanges with rival receivers, and may find motivation from these beefs.

"Whatever that young cat said, Coop, go and take it back," Norman said. "Crabtree? I have nothing to say to you. Yes, I may be Cover 2, but I'm Cover 1 too. I'm Cover 1, Cover 2, Cover 3 and Cover 4. All of them. All of the ingredients to make a perfect attack. We do all the extra stuff. When you come out on this field, you going to see about us."