Coming off an impressive win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Oakland Raiders exploded into the O.co Coliseum last Sunday with a copious amount of confidence. For they should have, as the Philadelphia Eagles were averaging just five points in their previous two matchups and the Raiders were an admirable top 10 ranked defense.
Oakland was looking to shine, but it was Nick Foles who stole the spotlight. After going two straight games without an offensive touchdown, the Eagles had no problem scoring against the Raiders, with Foles delivering one of the best performances in NFL history. In the words of head coach Dennis Allen, the Raiders suffered a “good old-fashioned butt whooping.”
Foles didn’t know he etched his name in the history books after the 49-20 demolition to the Raiders until after the game. He threw for an NFL-record-tying seven touchdowns — he became just the seventh man to do so. He completed 22-of-28 passes for a whopping 406 yards. Numbers never lie; the youngster threw MORE touchdowns than incompletions.
“There’s no question there’s a bad taste in our mouth right now but that one’s over with, that one’s done with and I can promise you we’ll have a bunch of guys who will be ready to get back to work and practice on Wednesday,” said Allen.
Will coach Allen be able to regain confidence in a young Raiders team that was utterly obliterated? Something worth noting, the Raiders were 3-4 last season, then went on to lose eight of their last nine, ending with a disappointing 4-12 record. Did the Raiders bring false hope upon the Nation the first several weeks, or was it simply the inability to contain the electric, fast-paced attack?
The defense allowed Chip Kelly’s dynamic, fast paced offense to put up points in a flurry. Nick Foles was particularly sharp, firing in all cylinders, he had black jerseys constantly confused and out of position, for they were simply outmatched. Nonetheless, this was not the first time Oakland had trouble containing a fast paced offense.
The Denver Broncos were the first to dismantle the Raiders defense with a fast paced approach. The respective veteran, Peyton Manning, went 32-for-37 in the air for 374 yards and three touchdowns. He made it look too easy. The Broncos trampled over the Raiders in a 37-21 domination, meaning Oakland has given up a breathtaking 86 points to those two teams who are predicated on the potency of their fast paced attack.
Now, back to the million dollar question. I don’t see the Raiders as the team they were last season, they’re an improved bunch with pieces across the board better equipped to win football games. It was a disaster of a game, particularly on the defensive side of the ball, that needs to be left behind and I believe they’ll do just so. The way the defense had been performing, prior to the Eagles landslide victory, was the best the Nation had seen in years. They’re a stout defensive unit that’s capable of playing at a high level, though the Raiders certainly need to learn how to contain the fast paced offense.
With that being said, I expect the Men in Black to make a strong return on Sunday against the New York Giants. If the Giants decide to attack the Raiders with the hurry-up offense, the Raiders cannot fall apart the way they did last Sunday, or else.