Oakland Raiders vs. Cincinnati Bengals: Week One Gamers and Goats

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September 13, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio (right) instructs against the Cincinnati Bengals during the second quarter at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

For Oakland Raiders fans, it was a long afternoon. Suffice it to say that the season opening game against the Cincinnati Bengals didn’t quite go as everybody had hoped. It was a thorough beatdown from start to finish and it was tough to watch. There is no way to sugarcoat the fact that on this day, the Raiders looked just as terrible as some predicted they would be this season.

There is no getting around it, this game was a debacle from the start with the Bengals racing out to a 33-0 lead before the Raiders woke up. Andy Dalton had way too much time in the pocket and was able to sit back there all day and pick the Oakland defense apart.

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The Raiders’ pass rush, which looked to be vastly improved over the course of the preseason was absolutely absent against the Bengals and did not record a single sack. For the game, Dalton went 25 of 34 for 269 yards and two scores. It’s amazing what an NFL quarterback can do when he has all the time in the world in the pocket, isn’t it?

And how about that much improved Raiders run defense? They did a good job of minimizing the impact of Jeremy Hill – though he did scamper in for two scores of his own – but he rushed 19 times for a total of 63 yards. They held Hill to a 3.3 yards per carry average, which is not bad. Giovani Bernard on the other hand, ran for 63 yards on just eight carries – or a 7.9 ypc average.

For the game, the Raiders’ run defense was gashed for 127 yards and didn’t seem able to make the big stops when it was absolutely critical. Of course, that could be said for the defense as a whole.

The offense, which also appeared to be vastly improved over last year’s version, was as big of a dud as the defense. They totaled just 246 yards of total offense – 183 yards through the air and 63 on the ground. It wasn’t until late in the game – when it was already well out of hand – that the Oakland offense was seemingly able to muster any sort of spark.

With Derek Carr out with a hand injury, Matt McGloin – after a rough start – led the Raiders on two touchdown drives to cut Cincinnati’s lead to 33-13. The game was all but over by that point, but at least the offense showed a little bit of life down the stretch.

But suddenly, with a very convincing beatdown at the hands of the Bengals, that spark of hope and optimism that Oakland fans entered the season with seems on the verge of being snuffed out.

Sure, some out there will say that it is the type of performance that they expected from this Oakland squad, but this game may well prove to be an aberration. It’s how they bounce back next week against the Ravens that will tell the better story.

Until then, let’s take a look at who balled out and who didn’t against the Bengals.

Next: The Man With the Stone Hands