Oakland Raiders Film Room: CIN at OAK

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Sep 13, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) runs from the pocket and is chased by Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Michael Johnson (90) in the second quarter at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Week One against Cincinnati was difficult to watch on Sunday. It was even more difficult to watch over and over again on the coaches tape. For many in Raider Nation, the hopes of a very promising offseason were quickly squashed as Oakland was dominated up and down the field on both sides of the ball. But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. It’s only Week One. A team with such a high roster/staff turnover, especially in key starting positions, is expected to be dealing with growing pains as the players learn to communicate and mesh with each other.

Still, when it was bad, it was bad. Derek Carr unwisely tried to stiff arm a defender flying at him with his throwing hand. Matt McGloin threw a terrible interception and gave up a ridiculous fumble on what looked like plain and simple sloppy play. The right side of the offensive line was atrocious. The defense consistently looked confused about assignments. Marquette King looked like an emergency replacement punter. And then there’s Ray-Ray Armstrong… We’ll get to Ray-Ray later.

There were some positives worth note. Both Latavius Murray and Taiwan Jones looked like a competent running back duo, despite the bad blocking. Michael Crabtree proved he can catch nearly anything. Amari Cooper showed that, when he actually catches the ball, he can do some damage after the catch. Justin Tuck and Dan Williams looked in top form, though the rest of the defense was mostly absent. Perhaps the best news of all is that it’s been a week and Aldon Smith hasn’t even been arrested.

Seeing as this is a team still developing chemistry, for this purposes of this article we’re going to avoid the most terrible mistakes and focus on the ones I think Oakland has a chance on improving upon in the next week or two. These are the baby steps to look for as Oakland settles into a groove over the course of the season.

Next: Ray-Ray Containment Issues