After news of Oakland Raiders quarterback Terrelle Pryor saying that he guarantees the Raiders will make the playoffs, I was left excited about the confidence yet unsure about the way the Raiders have been playing.
“We’ll be back. Two and four (2-4)… we’ll be in the playoffs,” said Pryor.
It may be tough for some to hear an unproven Pryor say that he guarantees his team makes the playoffs after a performance like he had against the Kansas City Chiefs where he threw three interceptions and was sacked 10 times.
Let’s start with the obvious. Oakland’s offensive line is horrible. Any group that allows their quarterback to be sacked 10 times needs to be benched. Most of the starters on Oakland’s line wouldn’t be on the practice squads of most other teams.
The Raiders can’t get a consistent running game going; Darren McFadden is undependable with his constant health issues, and Rashad Jennings is an ineffective “push the pile” kind of runner. The only bright spots in the Raiders’ running game are Pryor and fullback Marcel Reece.
Reece is by far one of the most versatile players in the NFL, and the Raiders leave everybody confused as to why they don’t use him more.
The Raiders need to effectively use Reece more and find some way to improve their offensive line, whether that be free agency or just waiting for next year’s draft.
Defense for the Raiders has stepped up, with Charles Woodson playing at a high level and the pass rush showing much improvement from last year. The heart of this defense is truly its linebacking corps, which has played tremendous through this season.
Oakland can’t win off of defense alone, and they will need to be able to get some consistency on offense as well.
The AFC West is too tough, with the still undefeated Chiefs and Denver Broncos. And the Raiders have lost to both.
A Raider fan at heart, I can’t see Pryor’s prediction coming true, regardless of my wishful thinking.