Who’s to blame for the Raiders’ bad start?
Certainly, there are plenty of suspects. Observers can point to the trade of defensive star Khalil Mack, spotty play at cornerback and safety, Derek Carr’s interceptions or an offensive scheme that seems like a throwback to 15 years ago.
Or, you could blame head coach Jon Gruden. On Monday, two people singled out Gruden – including Gruden.
After listing some good points from Sunday’s loss to the Los Angeles Chargers, the first-year head coach in his second stint with the franchise changed direction.
“I’m going to continue to emphasize the good and do everything I can to fix the things that are bad because most of the things that are bad, my fingerprints are all over,” he said.
He even told reporters he was “a little depressed today” after yet another loss and injuries that have impacted position performance all over the field, on both offense and defense.
Also pointing the finger at Gruden was Greg Papa on 95.7 The Game. The former Raiders’ longtime play-by-play radio man – let go this offseason -- didn’t like what he saw in Sunday’s loss.
Papa said on air Monday that the Raiders are “a poorly coached football team.”
Papa said the Raiders’ offense isn’t as dynamic as he expected under Gruden and the team is making too many mistakes.
“That pains me,” Papa said of his critique of the Raiders’ offense. “Because Jon is a really clever play designer. I don’t see a lot of combination routes.”
While the offense gains yards – it ranks sixth in the NFL with 411.2 yards per game – it is 24th in rushing and 22nd in scoring. Long drives often are too often stalled by penalties or turnovers.
Can Gruden fix these problems? That’s the question.
The Raiders will now work to try to get back on track this Sunday, when they take on the Seattle Seahawks in England. Kickoff is set for 10 a.m. in the Bay Area.