Wed, Dec 11, 2019

The Oakland Raiders had a chance to claim part of first place in the AFC West with a win this week, but instead, the only thing the Raiders claimed was the title for “ugliest performance of Week 12.” 

The Raiders haven’t been great on the road this year (1-4), and they reached a new low on Sunday in New York as they fell flat on their face in a 34-3 loss to the Jets. It’s fitting that the game kicked off at 10 a.m. PT, because the Raiders looked like they were sleepwalking through all four quarters. 

Raiders coach Jon Gruden didn’t try to make any excuses for his team after the loss. 

“If you’re not on your game, especially us, if you’re not on your game, you’re in for trouble,” Gruden said after the loss, via the team’s official Twitter account. 

Although Derek Carr has had plenty of success this season, he really hasn’t been asked to do much. For the most part, Gruden has designed an offense that mostly asks Carr to make short, safe throws, which is a big reason why Oakland throws so many screens. 

So what happens if you take the safe pass away from Carr? Well, we found out that answer on Sunday. 

Most quarterbacks will look to throw deep if the short pass is taken away, but Carr rarely makes the deep throw. Against the Jets, Carr kept making short passes even though New York was blowing them up, as you can see below. 

Carr was hellbent on throwing short, and it ended up being costly for the Raiders. Not only was it ineffective, but Carr also gave the Jets seven free points when he threw a pick-six in the third quarter. 

Including that pick, Carr finished 15 of 27 for 127 yards in the loss. Carr struggled so badly that Gruden ended up pulling him in the third quarter. 

The good news for the Raiders is that this loss isn’t going to ruin their season. If they can go into Kansas City next week and upset the Chiefs, then the Raiders will be tied for first in the division with just four weeks left to play, which is something that any Raiders fan would have been ecstatic to hear before the season started. 

If the Raiders are going to beat the Chiefs, Carr is likely going to have to start taking shots downfield. If he doesn’t get more aggressive, there’s a good chance that game is going to turn out like the first meeting between the two teams, which Kansas City won 28-10. 

N.Y. Jets 34-3 over Oakland

Cleveland 41-24 over Miami

Tampa Bay 35-22 over Atlanta

Buffalo 20-3 over Denver

Chicago 19-14 over N.Y. Giants

Washington 19-16 over Detroit

Seattle 17-9 over Philadelphia

Seahawks-Eagles grades by Jeff Kerr (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Pittsburgh 16-10 over Cincinnati

Steelers-Bengals grades by Bryan DeArdo (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

New Orleans 34-31 over Carolina

Panthers-Saints grades by Cody Benjamin (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Tennessee 42-20 over Jacksonville

Jaguars-Titans grades by Jordan Dajani (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

New England 13-9 over Dallas

Cowboys-Patriots grades by Patrik Walker (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

San Francisco 37-8 over Green Bay

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