The Las Vegas Raiders are going through it. They have started this new year 0-2, and could very easily be 2-0. They are in the hardest division in football, and being 0-2 can hurt even more when you are in the AFC West.
The Raiders had one of the more successful offseason in the NFL. They were able to add the best receiver in the league in Davante Adams, along with some depth pieces like Mack Hollins and Zamir White.
Then on defense, they added Chandler Jones, who has been dominant during his time in the league, to pair with Maxx Crosby.
Let’s also not forget they got maybe the best head coaching candidate in the league in Josh McDaniels, who fell from the Bill Belichick tree.
While all that is great, there are still problems. Apparently, Stephen A. Smith of ESPN gives Derek Carr some of the blame. Here was his latest quote on First Take.
“You give all the right quotes, you say all the right things, you represent the franchise off the field in a prestige fashion. We appreciate that, but when are you going to step the hell up and remind everybody you can ball too and lead this team to another level?”
The Raiders have struggled, yes. But not all of it is on Carr. I think if you watch the Raiders, and it sounds like Smith doesn’t, then you know that Carr hasn’t been the best, but that it’s also a few different things surrounding these early struggles.
Let’s start with the biggest one, the offensive line. If Smith watched the Raiders he’d know it’s their biggest problem, and one they have been trying to fix all offseason long.
They cut their former first-round pick right tackle Alex Leatherwood, just because things were that bad. The offensive line has had more lineup combinations than nearly every team.
Carr has had his troubles but he isn’t the main reason. Let’s remember that. The Raiders will get things together, and even if they start winning the national media will doubt Carr’s abilities like he hasn’t done it before.
That’s just what comes with wearing silver and black.
Featured Image Via Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports