A Glimpse of the Future?
by, 11-19-2013 at 06:01 PM (1048 Views)
I have been doing a lot of thinking since the Raiders road victory and I am finding it hard to think of what to say. Have I really gotten so used to losing week in and week out that I am stumped by a win? As I sat down to write this blog I realized that it is a good thing. Winning is good. It tends to shut your critics up!
What we saw this last Sunday is a sign of things to come for us. Before I get into why, I will say this: The team we beat, the Texans is severely underachieving as a team right now. Even with their injuries, there is no other reason for them to be on a losing streak of epic proportions. Matt Schaub has proven in the past that he can play. He has been ineffective so I understand why they put in Case Keenum to try and shake things up. They have their game changer at wide receiver with some good second and third options. They also have some good running backs. Their defense is top notch. The players are just not making plays when they should. Bottom line: They are a good team and we beat them.
I have been known to say that there have been plays to be made for the Raiders and they have been missing them. While there were a few misses in this game, more of them were made. That was the difference in this game. With the exception of the Philly debacle, defense has been very good and our Achilles heel has been offense so it was great to see them perform well.
Matt McGloin provided a great spark this weekend. Several factors played into it, including the fact that the Texans didnít know enough about him to prepare. They did make some good adjustments which is a credit to them. In the end, the Raiders offense had to make plays to get the lead back and they were able to make enough of them. Once the offense made their plays, the defense did what they do best and sealed the victory. It was truly a team win and that is what DA has been preaching.
We are still missing several pieces to this team but this was a game they should have won. They will win a lot more games like this along with many of the ones they are not expected to because they have the right attitude. I saw Matt McGloin do something that people everywhere have been saying that Pryor should do and hasnít: Step up into (climb) the pocket and make an accurate throw. Be decisive and hit the open guy. A QB who can do that will be successful. So what am I saying here? Read on for the answer:
Is McGloin the QB of the future for us? I think it is way too premature to say that, but it is not premature to say that our QB has to play like he did rather than the way Pryor has. Watching this game reminded me of when Rich Gannon was our QB. It gave me hope. By the way, I have always believed that you field the guys who give you the best chance to win and If Matt is that guy right now, I say let him play until he proves otherwise. He earned at least that.
The offensive line has taken the blame for the woes from lots of people. They have played horribly at times, but they are not totally to blame. McGloin added fuel to that argument. if he can do what he did behind them, why can't Pryor? I also have to ask myself if Pryor would have stepped into the pocket to make those throws had he played. Judging by what I saw in his last two games, I would guess not. McGloin is more of a pocket passer and I think he fits what Olsen wants this offense to be. This brings me to my next point:
This offense was tailored with the thought that Matt Flynn would be our QB. Unfortunately he lacked the intangibles necessary; namely pocket presence and was cut. I donít think that the injury to Veldheer changed what they wanted to do offensively. Pryor's skillset did that. My opinion after this game is that he is supposed to learn to do the things that McGloin did in the Texans game and he just hasnít. It is not his style. A run first QB is spectacular to watch, but I donít think it fits the identity of Olsenís offense.
I do find it hard to criticize Pryorís effort because the guy has heart and shows very good leadership qualities, but I donít see our future as one with a QB who is the teamís leader in rushing. Does this mean that Pryor is not the guy? Not necessarily, but he has GOT to learn to step up into the pocket and make throws rather than running around going backwards waiting for something to open up if he is to be the future.
We need to see more guys come back healthy this season and more building of this team for the future, but what we saw on the field is what Reggie is working toward: A complete team that competes and wins AS A TEAM. I feel more confident now that we got a glimpse of what is to come. Perhaps with one of the QBs on the roster now or maybe with one yet to be drafted, but either way we need more of that from whichever QB we have. Just imagine where this team will be playing like that consistently with more pieces in place. It is an exciting future!