What’s Gotten Into The Oakland Raiders’ Defense?
When the Oakland Raiders got to their week five bye, there was much cause for concern on defense. In week nine, fans are wondering where this defense was in the first four weeks.
Oakland is currently ranked 11th in the NFL against the run, having given up 102.1 yards per game on the ground. This was to be expected with the Raiders front seven clearly being the best part of this defense. Philip Wheeler has emerged as a leader on the defense at linebacker, and has played well this season. Rolando McClain continues to make the progression at middle linebacker in his third season in the league. The defensive line has continued to be led in the middle by the two Pro Bowl-caliber defensive tackles, Tommy Kelly and Richard Seymour.
The most surprising stat is the Raiders are ranked 20th against the pass. The same team that gave up nearly 400 yards through the air twice has held teams to under 250 passing yards in the last three weeks since the bye. The secondary might be average at best, but Tyvon Branch has played exceptionally well in a completely different role than he has the past. Even though he has had more than 100 tackles the past three seasons while playing more in the box in the past, his 46 tackles this season is nothing to be ashamed of, and proves just how much stronger the defense has become. While the defensive backfield has improved, it still only has five interceptions this season. That can be attributed to the rotation at cornerback, which has come together in recent weeks as players have stopped getting injured.
As the schedule gets easier for the Raiders, the defense will have to continue to improve. The little confidence boosts from playing bad offenses will help when the New Orleans Saints and Denver Broncos come to Oakland later this season.
Report: Seattle Seahawks find a way to extend another star player
The Seahawks are apparently salary cap masters. Read More
15 NFL People Who Don't Belong in the Hall of Fame
These 15 people from the NFL are enshrined in Canton, but certainly don't deserve to be. Read More
Report: Denver Broncos star linebacker Von Miller gets really, really good news
Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller had the summer from hell just two years ago. Man, oh man, how far he’s come. Miller got some great news on Saturday. A clean Von Miller dismissed from NFL's drug program http://t.co/Konpi1531I #9News — Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) August 2, 2015 From Mike Klis’ article on 9News: As Denver Broncos ... Read More
Tebow's Chances With Eagles Looking More Realistic
Tim Tebow hasn't been looked at as a serious contender to have much of an impact with the Philadelphia Eagles, but that could change very, very soon. Read More