Raiders Defense Quietly Having Another Underwhelming Season

The Raiders have been one of the most disappointing teams in the NFL through the first half of the season.

A year ago, Derek Carr and the Oakland offense averaged 26.0 points per game. This season, the average has fallen to 21.8 points per game.

Without a doubt, Todd Downing’s offense has been the biggest disappointment of the Raiders season.


The defense has been its own kind of awful.

Through nine games, the Raiders have exactly 0 interceptions and only 13 sacks. Ken Norton Jr.’s unit was worst in the NFL in sacks last year (25) and is on pace to only put up 23 this season.

Imagine having Khalil Mack at your disposal and managing to perpetually finish at the bottom of the league in sacks?

What’s worse is that the Raider defense essentially turns every quarterback into an MVP-caliber quarterback.

Quarterbacks have won the league’s MVP award in each of the past four years. They have combined for a 111.3 quarterback rating.

Opposing quarterbacks against the Raiders this season have a combined rating of 110.5.

If it weren’t for an underachieving offense, Norton Jr. would be under a lot more heat that he already is. Last year, the offense made up for many of the Raiders defensive deficiencies. This year, the offense is stealing the headlines again, but this time with lackluster production of their own.

It’s been a fairly gently schedule for the Raiders through nine games, but with the Patriots, Eagles, Cowboys, and Chiefs looming in the second half, the real MVP-caliber quarterbacks are right around the corner.

If the Raiders want to make the playoffs, they probably need to be the best team in the league over the second half of the season.

Feeling good about those odds?

twitter: @raidersbeat


6 thoughts on “Raiders Defense Quietly Having Another Underwhelming Season

  1. The Raiders are a case study in how a coach can make a world of difference in a teams performance. I am fed up with Del Rio. Most quality franchises would have fired Norton and replaced Downing for what he has done to the once 6th ranked offense. Reggie is not a micromanager, but I am sure he is having conversations with Del Rio. These game plans are on the HC, and Del Rio is showing that he is hands off. It is a shame that they are willing to throw away another season for continuities sake. I am afraid that they will give Downing another year to work this offense; just like they have given KNJ three years to run this defense. Our window of opportunity is closing real fast.

  2. Norton is horrible. Del Rio was good enough to start giving us that winning mentality, but he can’t take us to the next level. I was fed up with Norton the first year. The fact that he’s still there is any utter embarrassment.

    1. I agree KNJ is the worst DC in the league. Del Rio had a chance to hire Wade Phillips that was his second biggest mistake. The first was allowing Downing to go to a zone blocking scheme.

  3. Jack Del Rio is responsible for the blueprint on defense. I can’t imagine KNJ running a defense this weak after being around Pete Carroll for 10 years in College and the pro game. This is Del Rio’s scheme. Denver’s defense didn’t get good until Wade Phillips came in. Finally, you don’t fire a coach who has your Offense ranked 7th. Jack did that. It’s clear that Derek Carr is not ready for Aaron Rodgers type control over the Offense.

  4. KNJ should’ve been gone. They should’ve kept Musgrave and signing lynch was a mistake imo. The team looks sorry. JDR and REG own it all.

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