Instant reaction: The Las Vegas Raiders organization is baffled


HENDERSON, Nev. — The Las Vegas Raiders were desperate to get into this game against a rumored Indianapolis Colts team that was tanking.

With an interim head coach who had never coached in college or the pro ranks, and a new player call who had never called a game, those rumors were at least plausible.

If the Colts’ plan was to tank, the bewildered Las Vegas Raiders fell short.

Here is my instant reaction:

No. 1 Josh McDaniels needs to get this organization back on track, fast. He is the face of the Raiders organization and his team, by some of the most loyal and loyal fans, has just been booed off his pitch.

I’m not asking or saying he should be fired, but he needs to be decisive and solve this problem. His head coaching career is going to be defined by how he navigates these waters.

McDaniels is the chef. His team is baffled, and now he must fix it.

#2 The Raiders’ D is woefully inconsistent. That doesn’t mean he’s devoid of talent, but he’s terribly inconsistent. Missed tackles, missed assignments and unproductive players make them bewildered.

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I can understand if these are players that Josh McDaniels and Dave Ziegler inherited. But many of the free agents they’ve signed are playing poorly, and some players they haven’t signed have gotten worse. Tre’Von Moehrig was widely considered one of the best safeties in the NFL last year as a rookie. It has practically disappeared.

In every game this season, the Raiders’ defense has given up a minimum of 20 points.

No. 3 Derek Carr had one of the most moving and authentic press conferences I’ve ever attended in decades of sports coverage. There is a complete disconnect between some of the players and the organization. I’m not saying leadership, but it’s clearly there. Davante Adams in the locker also escaped it.

No. 4 Daniel Carlson: Entered today’s game leading the National Football League with a 41-game winning streak. If you’re wondering, the NFL record is 44. He had no opportunity today to throw a field goal.

No. 5 We offer a ton of praise to Daniel Carlson, and he deserves it, but perhaps the most overlooked player in this tea party is P AJ Cole. He was sensational for the Raiders.

The Raiders return to action next week when they travel to Denver to face the Broncos. This game kicks off at 4:05 a.m. ET / 1:05 a.m. PT. You can see this game on FOX.

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