Oakland Raiders Film Room: Week 13 (Rams)

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Carr’s Rookie Decision Making

Credit: NFL Game Rewind

With about 6 minutes left in the first quarter and down by only two scores, Oakland has a chance to keep the game competitive with this drive. Oakland uses 11 personnel (1 RB, 1 TE, 3 WRs) on this play against St. Louis’ nickel sub-package (4 DLs, 2 LBs, 5 DBs). QB Derek Carr looks ultra rookie on this play, as his mistakes begin before the ball is even snapped. Firstly, Carr needs to recognize the coverage and call a hot route to get someone in between the hash marks. The middle of the field is ABSOLUTELY WIDE OPEN and the DBs are in press man coverage with just one safety over 20 yards off the line of scrimmage. A safety of that depth screams all out blitz, and even if the linebackers dropped into coverage a QB needs to give his receivers an opportunity to beat them into the middle of the field considering the space that needs to be covered. After the snap Derek Carr stares down his target the entire time and WR James Jones just isn’t able to gain separation even against the heavy inside leverage the DB is playing on him.

Plain and simple, an offense needs to be able to convert on 3rd and 3. A quarterback needs to be able to exploit such obvious gaps in the coverage. St. Louis was gambling away the middle of the field for the chance to get a sack. An offense that can’t convert on gimme plays like this simply doesn’t deserve to score.