At least the Raiders got out of it healthy, right?


At least the Raiders got out of it healthy, right?

SEATTLE -- So what, if anything, do the Raiders' glean from a 21-3 beatdown administered by Seattle in what is supposed to be a meaningless fourth exhibition game?"We got out of it healthy," said quarterback Carson Palmer, who played all of six snaps and handed the ball off every time."Obviously you want to win when you're on the field but we got through it and now our mind is on the San Diego Chargers."True, but first things first. With the starters essentially sitting this one out, and their injured sextet of Sebastian Janikowski, Jacoby Ford, Denarius Moore, Aaron Curry, Stefen Wisniewski and Richard Seymour not even making the trip, the manner in which their backups were dominated should be cause for alarm.Because injuries are inherent to the game and the drop-off from the Raiders starters (when healthy) to their backups (no matter their health) is stunning. Or did you not see the Seahawks pick apart Oakland?Consider this: Seattle out-gained the Raiders in total yardage, 334-101, and had almost five times as many first downs, 24-5.And yet, those numbers may be somewhat of a mirage."It's hard to tell," Palmer said. "A third of the guys playing tonight won't make the team. A lot of guys were struggling and it looked bad. But it was important that the second-team guys got reps and experience doing the things they need to do in the real games."Still, the manner in which the Raiders' second-team offensive line crumbled was astonishing. Neither Matt Leinart, who was 3-of-11 passing and sacked once, nor Terrelle Pryor, who was sacked twice, had much time to set their feet, let alone go through reads and throw down field.Pryor was at a loss for words when asked what he could glean from the game."To see if I had the right footwork," Pryor said after a lengthy pause.Did he?Pryor paused again, unable to answer the question after completing six-of-nine passes for 55 yards."The second-half team, we've got to play better than that," he said. "The thing is, we can't clean it up, because now it starts for real."Can the Raiders, who went 1-3 in the preseason while getting outscored by a cumulative 75-61, suddenly find its rhythm in the next 10 days before the season opener on Monday Night Football at 6 p.m. PT on Friday after some of the excess is cut with rosters being pared from 75 players to 53?
"We didn't play good, so I see that as significant," said coach Dennis Allen. "It was obvious by our execution tonight that we aren't ready for prime-time."At least, not the backups and the guys who won't be on the team Friday night. This we know for sure from this exhibition finale.

Donald Penn: Raiders players trust McKenzie will add right pieces

Donald Penn: Raiders players trust McKenzie will add right pieces

The Raiders were pretty darn good last season. A 12-4 record proved that point. There was plenty of talent on a team with a penchant for high-wire acts in victory that masked the fact there were holes on the roster.

They need to be filled for the Raiders to improve in 2017, and new players will be imported through free agency and the draft.

Left tackle Donald Penn is excited to see who gets added, but said there’s no doubt talent is coming to Oakland. He speaks for Raiders players, who have faith that general manager Reggie McKenzie will make the right moves.

“Things that Reggie has done in past drafts have been great, and we’re looking forward to seeing what he brings back towards us,” Penn said recently during an in-studio appearance on NFL Network. “We can’t wait to get back out there healthy. We’re ready to hit the football world with a storm.”

While new guys are coming, a few might head out. The Raiders have several unrestricted free agents. Penn wants to keep his guys around – he mentioned running back Latavius Murray by name -- though he has some ideas for McKenzie’s checklist.

The Raiders don’t need much with most key players under contract – the Raiders should be less active in free agency over past offseasons – but a few key components could put this team over the top.

“If we stick to Reggie’s plan, we’ll be great,” Penn said. “I know he’s going to have a great draft, add a couple little pieces here and there – maybe somebody in the secondary to help out a little bit.

"On offense, you could always use a weapon. Maybe we get another receiver to take (pressure off Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper), but we have a good nucleus right now.”

Raiders LT Donald Penn: QB Derek Carr 'almost 100 percent'

Raiders LT Donald Penn: QB Derek Carr 'almost 100 percent'

Derek Carr is on the mend. The Raiders franchise quarterback had surgery to repair his fibula shortly after he broke it in a Week 16 victory over Indianapolis, and is recovering well during the offseason.

Carr insisted on intense rehab this winter in an attempt – however unlikely it may have been – to return should the Raiders have played in the Super Bowl. It slowed to a normal pace after the Raiders' loss at Houston in the postseason’s opening round, but those in contact with him say he’s making strides.

Left tackle Donald Penn was recently in contact with Carr, and provided an update on Monday during an in-studio appearance on NFL Network.

“I texted Derek (a few) days ago checking in,” Penn said, “and he said he’s almost 100 percent.”

Surgically-repaired broken filbulas take significant time to heal, and the Raiders plan to be conservative with their MVP candidate during the offseason. Derek Carr’s brother and NFL Network analyst David Carr, who was on set with Penn on Monday, said Derek could be back for offseason work.

“He’s doing good,” David Carr said. “He’s walking around already, stretching it out. You can’t do a lot for the bone, right? But he’s going to be back. He’s going to get a whole full offseason in. That’s going to be the best part.”