Let’s be honest. There’s only one way to describe how the Raiders have looked on offense through two preseason games – sloppy.
Carson Palmer’s erratic throws have been sloppy. The play of the offensive line has been sloppy. Pretty mush everything except penalties has been sloppy.
At least Dennis Allen is keeping good on his word to bring in more discipline. Now all we need is more of a commitment to excellence and things will really be looking up around Raider Nation.
A big reason for all of the sloppy play can be attributed to all the injuries piling up.
Last season Palmer never played with all of his weapons and going into his second season in silver and black he’s still waiting to get his full complement of offensive components. Denarius Moore’s hamstring injury becomes more troubling by the day. Jacoby Ford is again dealing with a foot injury. And now Darrius Heyward-Bey has a shoulder problem.
The loss of Louis Murphy combined with the newness of Rod Streater and Juron Criner has created yet another adjustment period for Palmer. Making matters worse the Raiders are without every quarterback’s best friend – a reliable tight end.
But beyond Palmer’s struggles there even more inconsistency brought on by injury.
The loss of Michael Bush was one of the bigger topics surrounding the Raiders this offseason. Just who will step up to fill that void is still very much a mystery. Taiwan Jones has yet to play in the preseason and Mike Goodson’s first action as a Raider was anything but encouraging. The hope is that Jones will be healthy enough to see some action prior to the regular season and Goodson will get his fumble problems in the rearview.
Then you’ve got situations like what Matt Leinart and the Oakland offense endured in Arizona on Friday. Once Leinart was out of the game with a thumb injury it was the Terrelle Pryor show which, as we know, has been far from ready for primetime.
Leinart has actually looked very good in the preseason so once Pryor took over you already knew what was coming.
All in all the problems of Oakland’s inconsistent and sloppy play is about more than injuries. There are systematic issues that must be worked out such as the O-line’s inability to get a push on short yardage situations. Also, we have yet to see exactly how Marcel Reece figures into Greg Knapp’s plans or what kind of usage the tight ends will have in the passing game.
To be sure there is plenty of work to be done but getting healthy and getting on the same page is at the top of the priority list.