Oakland, CA – In their home opener, the Raiders really stunk up the place. After winning two home games in the preseason, Oakland suffered an embarrassing 30-14 loss to the Houston Texans. Their performance resembled a pop-warner little league game.
“We’re not very good,” said cornerback Charles Woodson. “We’re not very good and they executed.
The Texans made it look too easy scoring two touchdowns in the first quarter. Ryan Fitzpatrick found J.J. Watt in the end zone for a 1-yard touchdown. Then Arian Foster capped a 70-yard drive with a 5-yard run for the touchdown. A 33-yard field goal extended their lead to 14-0.
Derek Carr’s pass intended for Mychal Rivera was intercepted by cornerback Kareem Jackson and returned 56 yards to the Raiders 24. That set up Houston’s field goal for 33-yards making it a 17-0 game. Then James Jones did the unthinkable and fumbled the ball twice on the same reception.
“I obviously feel very comfortable with him,” said Carr. “So when it [fumble] happened, I don’t need to say anything to James. I went up to him and said, ‘Hey are you good?’ He’s professional, he’s like ‘Yeah, my bad. Now let’s get the next one,'”.
Jonathan Joseph stripped Jones twice on the same slapstick play. The Raiders turnovers proved costly, that play was one of four that occurred in the red zone. Carr moved the offense downfield with a 41-yard run early in the second but threw a interception that set up three field goals by Houston.
“That’s a recipe for getting your butt kicked,” Oakland’s head coach Dennis Allen said. “I told the players in there just now, the only people that can change it are the people that are in that locker room, coaches and players. We’ve got to make a conscious decision to get this thing changed.”
The Texans took advantage of another turnover, Rivera fumbled in the third and Joseph returned it 49 yards to set up a 12-yard touchdown pass from Fitzpatrick to DeAndre Hopkins. Another field goal extended their lead 27-0. Oakland’s defense had no plan of attack and got beat badly on multiple drives.
Darren McFadden started in place of Michael Jones-Drew who was out with a hand injury. McFadden rushed for a 1-yard touchdown in the fourth. Carr followed with a 9-yard pass to Jones late in the quarter for the touchdown.
“We just turned the ball over,” McFadden said. “It’s hard to keep something going like that.”
Carr finished with 263 yards for 1 touchdown and two interceptions. He went 27 for 42 completions for his first regular season game at home. Carr also rushed for 58 yards. But the reality is, this is just the second game of the season. There is plenty of time to get it right. The Raiders look ahead to next Sunday when they face the New England Patriots on the road.
“We’re going to get it right, I promise you that,” said Carr. “We’re going to fix things and I’m going to get better and we’re going to get better as a team, I can promise you that.”
“I’m real confident,” right end Lamar Woodley said. “This is only the second game. We have to eliminate those things: pre-snap, post-snap penalties and missed tackles and quit giving up the big plays. In the last two weeks, we gave up some big plays and put ourselves in bad field positions. When you do that, teams take advantage of that.”