The Seattle Seahawks take on the NFC West Division leaders in week 5. We asked our cousins at Golden Gate Sports for some 411 on the Oakland Raiders.
Sunday, the Seattle Seahawks take on former AFC West division rivals, the Oakland Raiders in London. I asked my counterpart Kevin Saito at Golden Gate Sports some questions about the Raiders ahead of this week’s game.
Q1) The Raiders have the worst scoring defense in the AFC, what are the main causes?
Simply put, the Raiders defense is getting pushed all over the field because they can’t get a push, up front. And no, it’s not just because Khalil Mack was traded. It doesn’t help, but it’s not the main reason. Go back to the year Mack (and Carr) were both drafted. Since 2014, the Raiders have been at or near the bottom of the league in scoring defense.
The “high point” — if you want to call it that — was when they ranked 20th in scoring defense in 2016. And that’s because they have not been able to rush the quarterback — even with Mack in the fold. Not having a pass rush means the opposing quarterback has all day to sit back and pick the defense apart. Combine that with shoddy linebacker and secondary play over the last few seasons, and it’s a wonder they’re not giving up 50 points a game.
Until they can get solid pass rushing contributions from all over their defense, and not try to rely on one guy, Oakland is going to give up some points. It all starts up front, and as they say, the war is won or lost in the trenches — and the Raiders are losing badly on that front.