Though it has been overshadowed by the Carr injury and the tough losses in the last two weeks, the Raiders have gotten better play out of its defense in the early part of the season. The Raiders have allowed just seven touchdowns in the first four games of the season. Three of them came in the debacle versus the Washington Redskins in primetime back in Week 3.
Oakland’s best player in defensive end Khalil Mack has been playing at an elite level for the Raiders. Not only does he have 4.0 quarterback sacks on the year, but he’s been outstanding in run defense. The guy is finding ways to be an impactful player every snap he’s on the field. Mack is one of the few true difference makers on an NFL defense. He’s incredible.
There have been other Raiders that have put some good things on tape in the last few weeks. Strong safety Karl Joseph has clearly made that second-year leap. If he keeps it up, he might be making a trip to the Pro Bowl.
While the Washington game was rough for him, T.J. Carrie has been a solid corner for the Silver and Black. Even the undermanned linebacker corps is doing an alright job of holding serve. Of course, the secondary still needs work, but the Raiders have shown that they can do enough defensively to give the team a chance to win ball games. They haven’t surrendered more than 27 points in a game yet.