Oakland Raiders: Keys To Victory Over Chicago Bears

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Sep 27, 2015; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns wide receiver Travis Benjamin (11) scores a fourth quarter touchdown as Oakland Raiders cornerback D.J. Hayden (25) defends at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

The Secondary Must Step Up

We knew going into the season that there were going to be big question marks surrounding the secondary. Over the first three weeks of the season, the Raiders pass defense has been even worse than we feared.

The Raiders are thirtieth in the league in pass defense, giving up 323 yards a game through the air. The pass defense has been so bad that even Josh McCown was able to light them up for more than 300 yards.

Yes, they’ve found ways to win, but that’s not a good thing and it’s something that is going to eventually catch up to this defense.

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  • Moving Travis Carrie to safety last week was a good move in that it allows the Raiders to get Neiko Thorpe – who, along with Carrie, had been one of Oakland’s steadier defensive backs – on the field at the same time. But even Thorpe seemed to struggle at times last week. And D.J. Hayden has been an absolute train wreck so far this season.

    Bears’ receiver Alshon Jeffery is expected back this week, which is going to create some problems for the Raiders’ young cornerbacks – but then, who hasn’t, really?

    If the Raiders are going to have long term success this season and actually challenge for the division crown, as is their stated goal, they are going to have to learn to defend the pass. In a division with Peyton Manning and Phillip Rivers, it’s going to be essential.

    It would behoove the Raiders to get their corners coached up and playing well against a team who is struggling like Chicago – which might boost their confidence a bit – or bring in somebody who can play the position.

    Oakland doesn’t need an All Universe cornerback, but they do need some who can play the position competently.

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