Oakland Raiders: Week 1 Grades

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Sep 13, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Darqueze Dennard (21) breaks up a pass intended for Oakland Raiders receiver Seth Roberts (10) at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Hjeltness

Quarterback: D+

Derek Carr struggled, particularly with his accuracy. Too many throws sailed high, and the team was lucky it didn’t lead to any turnovers. A bad decision to hang on to the ball nearly led to a fumble/turnover and even worse, it lead to Carr injuring his throwing hand.

Matt McGloin came in and actually wasn’t too bad. Pretty much all of his production was garbage time though, and he had one really bad pass that resulted an an INT.

Running Back: C+

Latavius Murray looked good, but not great. Vision is a definite strength of his and he showcased that on a handful of plays. Unfortunately, the team got down early, which limited the amount of work Latavius would get. He finished with 11 carries for 44 yards, and also hauled in 7 receptions for 36 yards.

Wide Receivers: C

COOOOOOOOP! Amari Cooper is the real deal. His routes are a thing of beauty, and he’s dangerous in the open field. I was paying attention to Cooper quite a bit, and he did a very good job getting open, but the QB’s weren’t able to get him the ball nearly enough. He ended up with 5 receptions for 47 yards.

Crabtree looked good in his official debut as a Raider. His production doesn’t look good on paper (which can be said for everyone) but he brought a lot of energy and I think he’ll put together a good season.

Tight Ends: F

Lee Smith held up well in his role as a blocking tight end, but the tight ends were nowhere to be found outside of that. Literally, nowhere. It took until the 4th quarter for a tight end to register a catch, when Clive Walford caught a pass for one yard. Rivera caught just one pass as well, for four yards.

Offensive Line: C

Free agent addition Rodney Hudson had a good game from a protection standpoint, but a few bonehead penalties hurt momentum on early drives.

It was just an okay day for the offensive line as a whole. They allowed two sacks and provided good protection more often than not. They got decent push in the run game, but since the team was trailing, they didn’t get much opportunity to do more here.

Defensive Line: F

The pass rush was non-existent and the run defense was nowhere near as good as it was supposed to be. Simply put, the defensive line got bullied and pushed around all game. They couldn’t get pressure from the interior or from the edge.

Aldon Smith made a few nice plays but that’s about it. Look for his workload to increase next week.

After an impressive rookie season and a dominant preseason, Khalil Mack had an underwhelming start to the season. He did see a lot of double teams though, so hopefully Ken Norton Jr. can find a creative ways to get him more 1-on-1 looks.

Linebackers: F

Ray Ray Armstrong struggled all game. He was out of position, failing to set the edge, blowing coverages and taking bad angles. He’s terrible, and that’s being generous. There is zero reason why Benson Mayowa should not be starting over him.

Malcolm Smith had a decent day, but Curtis Lofton made no impact. Also, Tyler Eifert looked like a first-ballot hall-of-famer, so everyone needs to improve in coverage.

Defensive Backs: F

I’ve been doing my best to keep the #RaidersTwitter mob off of D.J. Hayden, but I’m about ready to pickup a pitchfork myself. He looked lost out there, giving up play after play after play.

T.J. Carrie looked like he had a good day, sticking with his man in coverage, not giving up any big plays, and contributing with a decent amount of tackles.

Coaching: F

It was a completely embarrassing debut for the entire coaching staff. The team looked unprepared, uninterested, and were out-coached in every phase of the game.

I was very critical of the Bill Musgrave hiring, and his offense didn’t give me any reason to feel confident going forward. But it’s still early, so let’s just hope they still need time to mesh.

Norton Jr. was particularly disappointing. There was absolutely no creativity on defense, as basic four-man rushes were used throughout the game. Seattle did this a lot during his time there, but they had an elite secondary and talented enough personnel at every level to get away with it.

Del Rio went for it and 4th and 1 and was criticized once the team failed to convert. But if the team would have converted, he would have been praised instead. For that specific play, Musgrave calling a draw play right at Geno Atkins probably wasn’t the best idea.

So for Del Rio, there weren’t any specific blunders I feel that he deserves criticism for. However, he is accountable for the performance of everyone on the team, staff and players alike. He took full blame in the post-game conference, so let’s see what he can do moving forward.

Next: JBB Week 1 Grades: Austin Gayle