Reactions to PFF’s grades of the Oakland Raiders after their Week 5 victory over the San Diego Chargers.
The Oakland Raiders (4-1) took down the San Diego Chargers (1-4), 34-31, outlasting the Bolts in a shootout to open up division play with a win in front of their home crowd.
Here’s a breakdown of how ProFootballFocus.com graded the Raiders’ performance on Sunday.
Derek Carr Remains a Catalyst for the Raiders’ Offense
When the game is on the line, the Raiders look to third-year quarterback Derek Carr, and with his back against the wall again on Sunday, trailing 24-19 going into the final minutes of the fourth quarter, Carr thrived under the pressure.
The former Fresno State product connected on five of his six passes for 47 yards, a touchdown and a successful two-point conversion on the Raiders’ two final scoring drives of the game.
In total, Carr completed 25 of 40 passes for 317 yards, two touchdowns and an interception, and was just two yards shy of tying his season-high in passing yards.
Coming on a failed screen pass, Carr’s second interception of the season was a byproduct of an uncharacteristic start.
"“That first quarter I started out so slow, that was my fault, no one else’s,” Carr said, via Kyle Martin of Raiders.com. “That was on me, the first couple drives I just wasn’t myself. I was too amped up, I get so excited for these division games. I’ve still got to do a better job of learning to keep it calm, the way I have been. Finally, I got back to my senses and we were able to move the ball a little bit. I told the guys ‘that was completely on me and I’ve got to do a better job performing at the beginning.’”"
Once he fell into his groove, Carr rallied past his early mistakes to earn the Raiders’ top offensive grade (85.4), per PFF.com.
Within Raiders offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave’s conservative offensive system, Carr performs well relying on his first read and dumping the ball off to his backs, and because Musgrave rarely asks him to read the defense or push the ball deep, Carr always connects the few times Musgrave chooses to be aggressive.
In comparison to his rookie campaign, Carr has dramatically improved the accuracy of his deep ball to the outside, and he continues to work past mental miscues because of the added experience and consistency within the coaching staff.
Though he wasn’t able to orchestrate a commanding victory over what was a struggling, injury-depleted Chargers defense, Carr effectively responded to early adversity.
His wins will define his legacy, not his statistics.