Raiders Game Action from Soldier Field in Chicago during Week 4.
Heading into the Oakland Raiders Week 4 matchup with the Bears in Chicago, Raiders.com Senior Editor Jerry Knaak posed five questions. Here are the answers to those questions.
1. Can the Raiders take away the tight end?
No. The Raiders managed to keep Martellus Bennett under 100 yards receiving, but he caught 11 passes including a touchdown. It doesn't seem to matter, man-to-man, zone, box-and-one, full-court press, or a naval blockade, opposing tight ends are Kryptonite. The Denver Broncos may have lost tight end Julius Thomas to the Jacksonville Jaguars in free agency, but their new head coach, Gary Kubiak, has a long track record of utilizing the tight end. Owen Daniels is the team's third-leading receiver and has played for Kubiak for a long time. During his time in Denver, Manning has utilized the tight ends effectively. The Raiders must fix this issue, and quick.
- Are the Raiders fostering the new triplets? Or even the greatest show on grass?**
Raiders quarterback Derek Carr went 20 of 33 for 219 yards, 2 TDs and 1 INT in this game, while running back Latavius Murray carried the ball 16 times for 49 yards but accounted for both Raiders turnovers with a dropped pass into the hands of a defender and fumble. Wide receiver Amari Cooper caught 4 passes for 49 yards and a TD, and wide receiver Michael Crabtree hauled in 5 for 80 yards. The Bears do play stingy defense and they sacked Carr twice. The running game hasn't been able to develop any consistency. This group will have to play a lot more football to earn a "triplet" type of reputation. "They like to double Amari [Cooper] a lot," Carr said after the game. "They like to give help to those guys and I don't blame them."
3. Is this a trap game?
The Raiders ran into a wounded animal. I don't think the Raiders looked past the Bears or took them lightly. The Bears opening drive was impressive and the Raiders were in a fight from the very beginning. Many folks said that this was a game the Raiders "should" win. They should've from the standpoint that it was there for the taking, not just because they were favored over the 0-3 Bears.
4. Will the sack attack continue?
After sacking Cleveland Browns quarterback Josh McCown five times the week before, the Raiders dropped Bears quarterback Jay Cutler three times, with Justin Tuck and Aldon Smith getting their first sacks of the season respectively and Khalil Mack getting his third. It just seemed like Cutler's pocket awareness and subtle movements got him out of trouble too many times and the Raiders couldn't get to him when they needed to the most. They are really going to need to dial it up against Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos this week.
5. Can the Raiders win two in a row on the road?
Obviously the short answer is no. After a good performance in Cleveland in many areas, the Raiders fell short in some this week. Turnovers, penalties at inopportune moments, inability to get off the field on third down, and a few injuries added up to a 2-point loss in the Windy City.