Oakland Raiders: Keys To Victory Over Chicago Bears

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Sep 20, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) prepares to throw a pass against the Baltimore Ravens in the fourth quarter at O.co Coliseum. The Raiders defeated the Ravens 37-33. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Spread the Wealth a Bit More

The Raiders’ offense, through the first three weeks of the season, has been pretty prolific. Derek Carr has two consecutive games with 300+ yards and multiple touchdowns. He will of course, be looking to extend that string against the Bears.

What’s becoming abundantly clear through the early part of the season is that Carr and rookie Amari Cooper are developing a tremendous chemistry and are quickly becoming one of the most potent passing/catching duos in the league.

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The downside of that of course, is that Cooper is also becoming Carr’s security blanket. That gives the opposing defense something of an advantage in that they are able to key on Cooper and take away Carr’s favorite target, which could possibly have a detrimental effect on the offense as a whole.

Against the Browns, Carr targeted Cooper a team high 11 times. Cooper responded with eight receptions for 134 yards. The next highest receiver was Seth Roberts who had three receptions on five targets for just 56 yards. Michael Crabtree was actually targeted nine times, but managed just four catches for a meager 36 yards.

In all, eight Raiders caught balls from Carr – but five of those players caught just one pass.

Yes, Cooper is an amazing weapon to have at your disposal. And Carr is right in trying to utilize him to the maximum. But he is also in danger of becoming predictable. Opposing defense know that if they sit on Cooper, they’re going to get their chances to jump a route and possibly pick off a ball.

The Raiders have arguably, more receiving talent than they’ve had in more than a decade. From Cooper and Crabtree, to Rod Streater, Andre Holmes, Seth Roberts, Mychal Rivera, Clive Walford, and even Roy Helu out of the backfield, the Raiders have quite a cast of receiving talent.

Carr would do well to avoid becoming predictable and spreading the ball around a little more frequently than he does. It will help keep opposing defenses on their heels if they’re not sure where the attack will be coming from.

Next: Time to Play Big