Raiders QB Aidan O’Connell - Stud
After his first start did not go exactly as planned, rookie Adan O'Connell deserves some love for playing a clean and efficient game against the giants. The key theme from the loss to the Chargers with O'Connell as the starter was the need for the youngster to protect himself and protect the ball. He was sacked seven times against the Chargers and turned the ball over three times in that matchup but in Week 9 he played mistake free football against a solid defense.
Two other things also stood out in O'Connell's performance which has helped him set himself apart from the other quarterbacks on the roster. The first was the ability to get the ball downfield. We've seen that Jimmy Garoppolo is seemingly physically unable to do so at this time and Brian Hoyer is unable to do so with any sort of regularity.
O'Connell may not have the biggest arm in the league but he has the ability to deliver the ball downfield with precision and accuracy, as displayed in his 50-yard connection with fellow rookie Trey Tucker.
The other thing that O'Connell did well was Distributing the ball to a number of targets. Both Garoppolo and Hoyer had a tendency to lock on to certain targets on a drive and last week the Raiders did not complete a single pass to a wide receiver in the first half against Detroit. This week, O'Connell was able to connect with eight different receivers throughout the game including Hunter Renfrow who was a non-factor in the offense before this week.
The final stats for O'Connell are nothing to write home about as he went 16-25 for 209 yards but much of that had to do with the way the game went and how well the running game was working. he gets a much tougher test next week against an aggressive New York Jets defense but for now let's focus on the positives.