Oakland Raiders to improve against Baltimore Ravens

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Sep 13, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green (18) is tackled by Oakland Raiders cornerback D.J. Hayden (25) and free safety Charles Woodson (24) in the third quarter at O.co Coliseum. The Bengals defeated the Raiders 33-13. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

The Secondary

Safety Nate Allen will be out for an extended period of time with a torn MCL while there’s good news on fellow safety Charles Woodson. Woodson can just pop that dislocated shoulder back in and play Sunday and I’m betting he will. Allen will be out at least six weeks on IR designated for return so the Raiders had to re-sign Taylor Mays.

He actually played well in the last preseason game with four combined tackles. He also showed an improvement in coverage and range playing deep half, nearly coming up with an interception. So while I believe Woodson is going to play, Mays will provide depth at safety behind Larry Asante so it’s the corners I’m worried about.

T.J. Carrie played the best of all of the corners Sunday but that doesn’t mean he played well. The Raiders gave up a 74 percent completion percentage with only one pass defended in the secondary. Every single one of them can stay with their man but need to look for the ball and try to make a play on it to prevent catches from being made.

Hayden could have had an interception if he would have looked back for the ball on the touchdown he gave up. Carrie would have given up a touchdown if Green would have caught the ball because he didn’t turn his head. Another thing they need to do is press and stop bailing so the pass rush can have time to get there instead of giving up all those short passes. If the cornerbacks can improve, and it is a big if, the Raiders can make it a game against the Ravens who struggled to score in their trip to Denver to open the season.

Next: Derek Carr