Raiders: Why Terrelle Pryor’s Future in Oakland Is A Mystery


About a year and a half after giving up a first and second round pick for quarterback Carson Palmer, the Oakland Raiders decided to part ways with him for financial reasons. This happened after Oakland acquired quarterback Matt Flynn from the Seattle Seahawks for two draft picks Monday morning – giving up a fifth-round pick in the 2014 draft and a conditional pick in 2015.

Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie had been trying to get Palmer to take a pay cut from his $13 million salary next season, but Palmer refused and McKenzie traded for his replacement.

Dec 30, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Terrelle Pryor (6) walks out onto the field after the Raiders were beat by the San Diego Chargers 24-21 at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Quarterback Matt Flynn received his opportunity to get an NFL start on the Green Bay Packers a couple years ago, and he was simply amazing. It was the last game of the season, and the Packers had already clinched the playoff spot they wanted. Therefore, Green Bay decided to play their backup quarterback and sit arguably the best in the game, Aaron Rodgers.

Flynn knew it was his time to shine – and he certainly shined. To call Flynn an opportunist would be perfectly legitimate, as he absolutely dominated the game and tore up the stat sheet. Flynn threw for 480 yards and six touchdowns against the Detroit Lions, leading his Packers to a season-ending victory.

Now, I am here to talk about Terrelle Pryor’s future with the Oakland Raiders. However, Reggie McKenzie and Marc Davis brought in Matt Flynn for a reason. If they believed in Pryor’s abilities they probably wouldn’t of picked up a quarterback so quickly after hearing Palmer does not want to take a pay cut to play in Oakland.

It is incredibly blatant that head coach Dennis Allen and McKenzie do not believe that Pryor is ready to be a legitimate starter in this league. He started in one game last year, the final game of the season.

Pryor got his first extensive playing time as a pro, and the Raiders fell 24-21 to the San Diego Chargers. The second-year quarterback out of Ohio State was far from great, but he also wasn’t horrible. Pryor showed the Raiders that he’s a player worth developing, but he needs more time to refine his game.

Pryor had three touchdowns (two passing, one rushing), and the Raiders scored a touchdown on every trip into the red zone. There are a lot of positives from Pryor’s performance, he is incredibly fast and agile and was fairly accurate with his passes. Pryor had 49 rushing yards on nine carries, and the Raiders converted 53 percent of their third downs.

There were also negatives from Pryor’s first start, like poor decision making, poor footwork which sometimes led to inaccurate passes, and not enough velocity when he put the ball in the air. Pryor’s footwork and poor pass protection by the offensive line resulted in an awful interception. Pryor completed just 46.4 percent of his passes and had only 150 yards passing on the day.

It looks as if the youngster will be a backup yet again for the Oakland Raiders. It will only be his third season in the NFL; he still has a lot to learn in order to refine his game and take that next step to become a starting QB. Brightside is that Pryor is a great backup to have which is always key incase Flynn suffers an injury. He will continue to improve his game day by day as the young kid has tremendous upside.