If you want a snapshot of the short-lived Louis Murphy era in Oakland look no further than his first game as a Raider. He scored twice yet only one of those TD grabs counted. It might have felt like shades of the Tuck Rule when his first NFL score was erased from the history books no thanks to a completely idiotic rule but in reality it was Louis Murphy’s Law. What can go wrong does and odds are Murphy could have somehow prevented it.
Louis Murphy has the talent. He showed that in his first NFL game.
Murphy has the drive. He proved that with a stunning and gritty performance in Pittsburgh.
Murphy’s even got the right mentality and desire. He more than displayed by bulldozing a clear path to end zone for Zach Miller once.
Problem was Murphy could never put it all together. He’d follow up a spectacular catch with an inexplicable drop. He’d take a reverse to the house then the next time on the field he’d take a trip to the showers after getting hit with a personal foul penalty. One minute he’s running around the defense like they’re playing in concrete cleats. The next he’s running into his own teammate effectively committing pass interference against the offense.
Such is the nature of Louis Murphy’s Law. That he went from being the team’s leading receiver to a pre-camp castoff can’t come as much of a surprise. Not if you’ve been paying attention to your recent Raiders history concerning wide receivers.
In recent years it hasn’t ended well for the leading pass catcher at wide receiver in Oakland. Randy Moss, Ronald Curry and Johnnie Lee Higgins all were either gone or saw their roles significantly reduced one year after being the team’s top receiver. Same now for Murphy. Darrius Heyward-Bey, you’ve been warned.
Of course Murphy’s Oakland exit wasn’t all about his decline in production. Injuries played as large a role as his inconsistencies. The emergence of Jacoby Ford and Denarius Moore didn’t help either. Neither did the arrivals of Juron Criner and Rod Streater.
All of that added up to Murphy going from being a fourth round steal to having seventh round trade value.