The Oakland Raiders, still riding the high from defeating in-state rival San Diego last week, went into Arrowhead Stadium with the belief they could pull off an upset once again. Three hours and several more injuries later, the team left Kansas City with more questions than answers. The Raiders defense fought and kept the game within reach but it was the offense who threw the game away – literally. An already depleted offensive line could not keep Terrelle Pryor upright and gave up 10 sacks. Pryor wasn’t given time to make proper reads or allow routes to develop and threw three interceptions in the second half.
Now the team looks forward to its much-needed bye week, not only to heal up, but to regroup and plan for what’s ahead after limping to a 2-4 record. “The bye is coming at a good time for us,” head coach Dennis Allen said after the loss to the Chiefs via csnbayarea.com. “We get a chance to get some, get healthy and get ready for Pittsburgh.”
Oakland surely is disappointed with its record up to now, but it has not waivered Pryor’s belief in himself and his team. “A lot of people fall but it’s about who gets back up, and I’m up,” Pryor said to reporters after the game via csnbayarea.com. “We’ll be back. 2-4, [but] we’ll get to the playoffs.” Pryor has said all the right things and has conducted himself in the way any team would want its quarterback to act – praising his teammates in victory and holding himself accountable in defeat. Those characteristics can rally a team around its quarterback and could possibly help the Raiders moving forward.
Aside from the loss against Denver, the Raiders defense have kept games close enough to give themselves a chance. Pryor said it was himself and the offense who have let close games slip by. That may be the case. It was certainly the case against Kansas City, but Pryor has the right attitude wanting to improve as a quarterback and help Oakland turn the corner. “Terrelle is a young, maturing quarterback,” Allen said of his quarterback. “As hard as it was to play the way we did offensively, it was a good learning experience for him. I think he’ll be better for it when he gets put back in this type of environment.”
The Raiders next five opponents have a combined record of 9-20. The more favorable matchups for Oakland during that span will be against the Pittsburgh Steelers (1-4) and against the New York Giants (0-6) two weeks after. These next few games will be crucial to the team’s season. If ever there was an opportunity to turn things around, this would be it. These games certainly will not be easy, but are those that Oakland conceivably can win.