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Derek Carr played a good game Sunday, particularly at the intermediate and short levels of the defense. He routinely hit crossers, slants and posts off RPO fakes, including one that Hunter Renfrow took to the house for a long touchdown.
Renfrow was Carr's best friend in Sunday's game, as he not only caught a long touchdown but also served as his security blanket on third down and extending a number of drives that helped the Raiders play keep-away from the Chargers in the second half.
The edge-rushing duo for the Raiders consisting of Maxx Crosby and Clelin Ferrell made mincemeat of the Chargers pass protection. The Oakland defensive front spectacularly shut down the Chargers during the opening stanza, forcing Philip Rivers to greatly speed up his time-to-throw, and entirely stonewalling any attempt at establishing a ground game.
With the rushing attack scrapped and the passing offense attempting to quickly get the ball out, the Oakland defense then shifted into an early prevent mode of its Cover-2 zone scheme. This allowed linebacker Will Compton to score double-digit tackles in cleaning up the many checkdowns, and provided the safeties added comfort with the Chargers making zero attempt to attack them vertically.
The Chargers offense sputtered its way to 17 points through a less-than-inspiring passing attack where Philip Rivers aired it out nearly 40 times. Mike Williams and Austin Ekeler continue to be two of the more underutilized playmakers in the league. However, until the offense is able to move the ball with more consistency and prove the ability to connect on deep shots, Los Angeles will continue to fall short of getting the most out of its arsenal.
The Chargers offensive line did not play its best game. The Raiders defense ran stunt after stunt that continuously drew out holes along the line — particularly during the first quarter, when Rivers was forced from his spot on virtually every passing attempt. With Melvin Gordon barely able to cross the line of scrimmage throughout the game, dropping an entirely immobile quarterback within a scenario without adequate pass protection was a recipe for failure.
Rookie defensive lineman Jerry Tillery, who has struggled this season, had a good game and made some plays as a pass-rusher.