The Oakland Raiders performed better in their second preseason game of the year and came out of it with a win. Unfortunately, they were not able to secure the lead until the very end of the game and the starters were not great. It was a better performance than in the first preseason game but still did not give a whole lot to get excited about.
MVP – Matt McGloin
When the third string quarterback wins the MVP for the game you know its the preseason. But in what turned out to be a rather exciting game, Matt McGloin solidified his reputation as a scrappy player who finds ways to win. Obviously it was against third stringers on the Lions so you can’t take too much away from McGloin’s performance but it sure was fun to watch.
LVP – Tarell Brown
Tarell Brown was supposed to be one of the bigger pickups on defense this offseason. People were rather surprised when Brown was signed by the Raiders as he was not connected with the team before that. While he was never an all star caliber corner, he has been a very solid corner for years. But through the first two preseason games of the year, Brown has looked pretty bad. Against the Lions, Golden Tate made him look foolish for biting on a double move as he walked into the end zone with ease.
X-Factor – Khalil Mack
At least he was supposed to be. The first round pick was supposed to be the guy who will define the Raiders defense for years to come. Unfortunately, he is off to a little bit of a slow start on his path towards being that guy. Mack was mostly unheard from in the second preseason game of the year. He did not record his first tackle until the second half and was not a huge factor finishing with two tackles in the game, one for a sack. It’s early and only the preseason but the Raiders are hoping to see more from Mack, even in the preseason.
Key Stat – 2 sacks
General manager Reggie McKenzie focused much of his attention this offseason on improving the pass rush on the Raiders. More specifically, he wanted to create pressure with the front four, something the Raiders could not do at all in 2013. I’ve said it before, the defense is running a very boring scheme during the preseason (as they do every year) and we can expect a lot more blitzes and pressure once the season starts. The problem is, now is where you want to see the defensive line apply pressure even without blitzes. That’s what was missing last season and what they hoped to improve this year.
Tweet of the Game
The atmosphere at a #Raiders PRESEASON game ousted all the games I’ve been to at the stick. The Nation makes 49er fans look WEAK.
— RFWavekiller (@RFWavekiller) August 16, 2014
It was pretty amazing to see. Late in the third quarter as the Raiders were making a comeback in the game, the crowd a the Oakland Coliseum was going nuts. It may have only been the preseason and it may have been back ups and third stringers but Raider Nation did not care. They wanted to see their team win no matter what and it showed in how excited people got as the game became competitive.
The win does not mean much at all since it is the preseason. What matters is what the players showed on the field. The biggest takeaway from this game is that both sides of the line for the Raiders struggled. The offensive line did not provide good protection or open up big running lanes and the defensive line could not sack the quarterback. Given how much time and attention was paid to the line play this offseason, the Raiders hoped to see a lot more from those two position groups.
August 22nd, 2014 5:00 p.m. PT
Oakland Raiders at Green Bay Packers