Head Coach Jack Del Rio
Alameda, Calif. – The Oakland Raiders are coming off a Week 17 loss to the Denver Broncos, and will take on the Houston Texans next Saturday in the Wild Card round of the AFC playoffs. Before the postseason action transpires, Head Coach Jack Del Rio was back at the team's practice facility to speak with reporters for his weekly press conference. He touched on a variety of topics from Sunday's game, and discussed what the team needs to do going forward to be successful.
Here are the quick hits from his media session:
**Del Rio broke down rookie quarterback Connor Cook's performance against the Denver Broncos.
"I thought Connor was pretty solid. I thought he handled himself pretty well. You know, ball security is so huge that we had a couple of ball security issues. That defense is pretty good. I thought overall that he did a pretty solid job for a tough set of circumstances for him. I thought he handled himself well, given the circumstances."
He made it clear that the defense needs to regroup prior to next weekend's game against the Texans..
"For us, it's so much more important that we focus on second-and-13, not giving up a 64-yard run, third-and-18, not giving up a 43-yard touchdown on a screen pass. Those are the ways we can help the quarterbacks. Quarterbacks are going to give us what they have and do the best they can. We have to play well around them. We can't expect them to come in and put us on their shoulders. We need them to come in and do their job and that's what we expect them to do this week."
Del Rio shared his thoughts on what went wrong defensively, and why the team gave up big plays.
"I don't know that I've seen tackling like that all year. Just a little surprised by it. Look, it was one day. That's the way I have to look at it, as one day. For whatever reason, we were off and we didn't play well and we lost the game. What I know about this game is win or lose, whether you're feeling good and people are praising you and patting you on the back or whether you're feeling bad and you let an opportunity slip away, you have to get on to the next game."
**The Raiders head coach talked about quarterback Matt McGloin's performance prior to leaving with an injury.
"Well, it could have been a lot better. I think the one glaring miss was the one to 'Coop' [Amari Cooper]. That was an obvious, in all likelihood, a catch-and-run for a touchdown. So, that was a big one to miss on. I thought he had a couple decent throws earlier in the game. The one to 'Crab' [Michael Crabtree] on the sideline was a pretty good throw, he just didn't come up with it. It was tight coverage. So, we had some of those opportunities. I think it was just OK."
He expressed confidence that the team will get back on track and rally together.
"There are too many examples of us being just a little bit away from it being a whole lot better. I think when you watch the tape the way we do and the way we show our players in the morning, I think they'll come away with confidence of what it can be. That starts, to me, in the run game. It'll obviously run the ball and be able to stop the run. Those are the two number one things."