On his way to setting the Raiders single game passing record with 513 yards, Derek Carr completed 40 passes on 59 attempts with four touchdowns in the Raiders Week 8, 30 to 24 victory over the Buccaneers.
Headed in to the week, the Raiders offense ranked fifth in Football Outsiders offensive DVOA and continued to excel in all phases.
Against the Bucs, the Raiders offensive line allowed three hits and two sacks; although the volume wasn’t in high demand, the rushing unit accumulated 5.3 yards per carry on 128 yards; and 10 different players caught passes.
One of those 10 players that caught a pass happened to be offensive tackle Donald Penn whose touchdown reception will be our first clip today.
With that, lets get to this week’s breakdown.
Week 8 NFL Breakdown: Derek Carr’s Record Setting Game
Raiders: 3 Buccaneers: 10 (3rd – 10:30) Donald Penn Touchdown
- Lets just enjoy this one. Notice Chris Conte’s pursuit on the fake away from his side of the formation.
Raiders: 10 Buccaneers: 10 (3rd – 5:38) Amari Cooper 34 Yard Touchdown
- After multiple watches, my take on the coverage the Buccaneers lineup in is that it could potentially be a split field scheme where the coverage to the field is cover-1 with the three underneath defenders in man-to-man coverage and the safety positioned as help over the top; the nickel’s coverage is what makes me somewhat uncertain. To the boundary of the empty set, it looks like the Buccaneers are in some type of quarters coverage where the safety is responsible for the No. 2—Cooper—on any vertical route.
- Conte allows Cooper to get separation at the top of the route, and Cooper is able to accomplish this partly through the use of his hands at first contact with Conte.
Raiders: 17 Buccaneers: 24 (4th – 2:44)
- Cooper wins at the top and the bottom of the route on this play. Off of the snap, notice how Cooper starts his route with an outside stem. When Vernon Hargreaves sees this, he punches with his left hand; from the perspective of the defensive back in press man coverage, if a receiver stems to your right, you punch with your left hand; if the receiver stems to your left, you punch with your right hand. When Hargreaves punches with his left hand in reaction to the outside stem, Cooper immediately breaks his stem back to the inside and throws Hargreaves off balance. Hargreaves isn’t able to recover, and even though the ball is slightly underthrown, Cooper is able to go up and come down with the catch.
Raiders: 17 Buccaneers: 24 (4th – 1:43) Mychal Rivera 7 Yard Touchdown
- The Buccaneers look to be lined up in cover-2 man, but the way that Mychal Rivera—the No. 3 to the field side of the formation is defended makes me think there may have been an additional call. Kwon Alexander fields Rivera in man coverage, but one may find it difficult to believe that the Bucs would expect Alexander to cover Rivera from that position on an out breaking route.
- Regardless, Alexander ends up on Rivera in coverage and does a pretty good job. Rivera fakes outside at the top of his route, breaks inside, and Alexander stays with him. Carr throws the ball in the perfect location, and the only criticism that you might be able put on Alexander is that he chose to defend the pass with his inside arm when it may have been faster and allow him to get more extension if he chose to defend the pass with his outside arm.
Raiders: 24 Buccaneers: 24 (OT – 1:55) Seth Roberts 41 Yard Touchdown
- Out of another empty formation, the Raiders go for it on fourth and four with less than two minutes left in overtime. This is the EXACT SAME PLAY as the second clip where Amari Cooper scores a touchdown. The first time around the Bucs ran man-to-man on the underneath receivers, and they do the same here. In fact, go look at the clip again. Jude Adjei-Barimah can’t cover Seth Roberts on the first play, and he can’t cover him here.
- The Buccaneers rotate from a cover-2 man look right before the snap to a middle of the field closed coverage and stay in man across the field. While Adjei-Barimah gets beat in coverage by Roberts, Brad McDougal—the safety valve over the top—goes for the big hit and loses. From McDougal’s perspective, if he’s able to cause an incompletion, he gives his offense the ball back with a chance to win the game, but in the process, completely disregards his responsibility to bring down the receiver in the event of a successful completion.
On multiple occasions, Derek Carr showed his ability to push the ball vertically down field. He finished with an 8.7 yards per attempt on the day and now has the sixth most completions of 20 yards or more. The ultimate test for the Raiders happens next when Oakland hosts the Broncos and their second ranked pass defense by DVOA—second prior to Week 8.
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