Jon Gruden not calling plays for the Las Vegas Raiders may be just what this team needed to get over the hump on the offensive side of the ball.
The resignation of Jon Gruden may have come at a perfect time. For a Raiders team that seemed to be sputtering with two straight losses on the offensive side of the ball, the firepower returned emphatically on Sunday against division foe the Denver Broncos.
What was different? Well, the offensive reigns were now being held by offensive coordinator Greg Olson. It was no secret that the former disgraced head coach in Gruden was calling the offensive plays for the Raiders, which was a batch of aged and questionable calls during much of his reign.
The familiarity would seem huge for the Raiders, especially in the case of Derek Carr, who has had basically no continuity in his eight years at the helm as the quarterback. Olson returned to the Raiders in 2018, which is an interesting case considering he was the Raiders offensive coordinator in 2014, also the rookie season of Carr.
The trust Carr has in Olson was on full display in this one, and with a touch of confidence and that big word ‘continuity”, just maybe the Raiders can make their first playoff appearance since 2016.
Raiders get it going on offense, leading to a huge win
The Silver and Black returned to winning form in Denver with a 34-24 victory over their rivals. The defense definitely made life difficult for opposing quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, but Raiders quarterback Carr had a very different tale in this one.
Carr returned to form from his first three games into the season, once again eclipsing the 300-yard mark, something he has not achieved since Week 3 against the Miami Dolphins. Carr’s 341 passing yards were spread out amongst eight different receivers, with Sunday’s best being his new consistent deep ball receiver in Henry Ruggs.
For an offensive line that was catching so much flak over the last couple of weeks, they responded in a big way, and Carr was kept mostly clean throughout this game. All-Pro linebacker Von Miller was virtually kept at bay throughout this one as the Raiders offense had their way with the Bronco’s apparent vaunted defense.
An offense that was so heavily reliant on the pass also got a much-needed boost in the running game with 87 rushing yards split amongst Josh Jacobs and Kenyan Drake. Also facing much criticism, but most of it due to being under-utilized in Gruden’s offense, the backup Drake added a rushing and receiving touchdown to show just how dynamic he truly is.
The Las Vegas Raiders have question marks on both sides of the ball, but quarterback Derek Carr has more options than ever in 2021.
It is only one game for Interim each coach Rich Bisaccia, but if he continues to let Greg Olson truly use his own play-calling and use Derek Carr in a much more vertical passing offense, it seems that the Raiders might actually have a chance at a playoff berth. Eat your heart out Jon Gruden.