There were a lot of great players in the Oakland Raiders’ blowout victory over the New York Jets. Here are five in the Silver and Black that caught our eye.
The Oakland Raiders improve to 2-0 after a dominating performance over the New York Jets at the Coliseum. This was the type of game where Oakland needed to come out and crush the opposition. New York may very well be the worst team in the AFC, perhaps all of football. It was great to see the Silver and Black push around an inferior opponent to chalk up its first home victory of the season.
Oakland has a difficult Week 3 game coming up against the Washington Redskins on Sunday Night Football. Washington is coming off a close road victory over the Los Angeles Rams. With Derek Carr and Kirk Cousins going at it, we can expect a lot of passing yards in this upcoming week’s primetime affair on NBC.
While Raider Nation largely knew that the Jets had no chance in this game, it was impressive to see the Raiders blow a former AFL rival out on Sunday afternoon in front of the home crowd. Great teams obliterate lesser competition. Oakland absolutely has a chance to be one of the very best teams in football in 2017.
Before we move full-steam ahead to Week 3 against Washington, let’s take a look back on five players that really shined for the Silver and Black. It was hard to pick just five, but these players’ performances were not only impactful, but hopefully signs of more good things to come as the season continues to unfold.
One of the guys that really made a name for himself this preseason was rookie linebacker Nicholas Morrow. He is a former undrafted player out of Greenville College. The Division III standout has not only overcome the exponential climb in competition to the NFL level, but he is starting to show great promise in an increased role in the Raiders defense.
After playing sparingly in Week 1 versus the Tennessee Titans, Morrow saw his snap count increase to 24. He certainly made the most of those extra snaps, albeit against an inferior AFC team in the Jets. Morrow had three tackles, two solo, one for a loss of yardage and a pass breakup.
While he has a knack for making the big tackle, Pro Football Focus highlights his ability to play in pass coverage as a major standout in this game. PFF gave the undrafted rookie linebacker an excellent 84.1 overall grade in his Week 2 performance against the Jets.
Oakland’s biggest deficiencies on defense are at the linebacker corps. Fellow rookie Marquel Lee has showed signs of promise as well. However, the fifth-round pick out of Wake Forest is more of a run-stopping linebacker than a guy that can make plays in pass coverage. Morrow is not only versatile in Ken Norton Jr.’s defense, but is quickly becoming an increasingly valuable piece for the Raiders in his rookie season.