Raiders sloppy in 10-6 loss to Vikings

The long-awaited return of Raiders football finally concluded as the team was in Minnesota to take on the Vikings in their preseason opener.

The bad part is that the game likely left Raider Nation with a feeling of disgust or sheer anxiety out of the fear of having another rough season after the back-to-back 4-12 seasons under Dennis Allen. But the good news is it is just week one of preseason and these games don’t count, per se.

The Raiders looked sloppy in all aspects of the game - offense, defense and special teams.

Quarterback Matt Schaub and the Raiders offense had the first opportunity to show the rebuilt team but left fans longing for more. The first play from the line of scrimmage was a penalty on an illegal procedure, a sight that became all too consistent throughout the night. The Raiders finished the game with 13 penalties, undoubtedly something Allen and the coaching staff didn’t like to see.

The passing game with Schaub and his receivers failed to click as he finished just 3/7 for 21 yards.

With the passing game struggling, the Raiders were out of position to run the ball but did see the offensive line getting a nice push when they did.

Maurice Jones-Drew looked healthy and able to make cuts that free him from defenders. He finished with just two carries for 10 yards to go along with two receptions for 14 yards. Jones-Drew is a key piece to the Raiders offense and keeping him healthy will be crucial.

Darren McFadden once again battled an injury last season but is looking to re-establish his career with the Raiders. He carried the ball just once but looked explosive on his one carry, exploding around the left side for a 23-yard gain. In fact, McFadden’s run was the first first down that the Raiders earned.

The starting defense struggled to defend against the Vikings passing attack. Veteran cornerback Tarell Brown got beat on numerous occasions by Cordarrelle Patterson.

Safety Tyvon Branch also got lost in coverage on the Vikings opening drive as tight end Kyle Rudolph got open to get the ball down to the one yard line. The Vikings would punch it in from there to take the early 7-0 lead.

One positive that can come out of Friday’s game is the play of rookie defensive linemen Shelby Harris and Justin “Jelly” Ellis. Harris and Jelly were able to apply pressure on the quarterback and at one point even teamed up to get to quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to strip him of the ball. Harris and Ellis could prove to be key pieces for the Raiders defense for years to come if they can continue to develop.

Rookie quarterback Derek Carr got his first NFL game action and played a decent amount. He was able to get the offense going some but failed to get into the end zone when he threw an interception on a short pass that went through his receivers hands. Carr finished 10/16 for 74 yards and one interception.

The Raiders lone score came in the fourth quarter when second-year quarterback Matt McGloin tucked the ball himself and scampered in for the touchdown. McGloin did the best leading the offense, finishing 11/18 for 90 yards and the one rushing touchdown.

A failed two-point conversion and hail mary effort would bring us to the final score of 10-6 with the Vikings winning.

There’s no need to hit the panic button yet Raider Nation. There’s still three preseason games for the team to correct their mistakes.

The Raiders return to the game field next Friday when they take on the Detroit Lions at O.Co Coliseum.

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