What went wrong?
An offseason of hope turned to misery when the Raiders were punished in Nashville, Tennessee. The Raiders were beat in just about every facet of football.
The most glaring weakness was obvious. The Raiders offensive line could not give Jason Campbell any time.
Mario Henderson was the worst offender. Excuses could be made for him, such as how defenders were lining up in the neutral zone or even offsides. Still, Henderson must block the defenders and he simply was doing a terrible job at even getting in front of them.
You might also point to rookie center Jared Veldheer, who at times was slow to snap the ball. Langston Walker had a false start and Cooper Carlisle was beat more than once. Even Khalif Barnes when given time at left tackle picked up the wrong man and it resulted in sack of Campbell.
Robert Gallery played decent enough, but was hurt in the second half and replaced by Daniel Loper.
When the offensive line managed to block for Campbell, the receivers were not open. Campbell was forced to then run for minimal yardage.
Darrius Heyward-Bey and Louis Murphy were basically no-shows. Zach Miller piled up a few yards in garbage time. Figurs and Higgins caught a few underneath passes that were basically check-down passes.
Jason Campbell didn’t make any plays, fumbled, was intercepted. The interception was nearly returned for a touchdown. He played scared, but who can blame him? The defensive line was in the offensive backfield all day.
The lone bright spot? Darren McFadden rushed for 95 yards and had 55 yards through the air with a touchdown. 150 total yards and a touchdown is a vast improvement for McFadden. He did much of his work after being hit, on draws and on short check-down passes from Jason Campbell.
The defense appeared to contain Chris Johnson early, until surrendering a 76-yard run while trailing 17-3 in the second quarter. That run basically sealed the game in the first half as the Raiders went down 24-3.
Rookie Rolando McClain played pretty well, although he did have lapses. Tyvon Branch had a tough day all around, biting on play action and getting blocked out of plays.
Michael Huff appeared to be benched in favor of Hiram Eugene in the second half.
The defensive line failed to apply much pressure on Vince Young besides a sack fumble by linebacker Kamerion Wimbley.
The performance had @TyvonBranch @QuentinGroves52 @Solo_Dolo_99s and @murph918 apologizing to fans after the game on Twitter and pledging to work harder.
Nnamdi Asomugha had this to say, “It is good for us. We’ll see how we respond to this.”
Not what the Raider Nation was hoping for to start off the year. The silver lining could be that only one team in the AFC west will enter week two with a winning record. A bad loss is still just one loss in the loss column.
Next week the Raiders draw a favorable matchup against the Rams at home and will need to bounce back to get what was slated to be a promising season back on track.