Tale Of The Tape: Jacksonville Jaguars At Oakland Raiders
- QuarterbackBlaine Gabbert had the roughest of outings in the Jaguars’ opener vs. the Chiefs, as he took 15 stitches in his throwing hand and was forced out of action late in the game. While head coach Gus Bradley says he will play against the Raiders if he is up to it, Gabbert struggled badly in Week One. He completed 16-of-35 passes for 121 yards, threw two interceptions and never looked comfortable.Terrelle Pryor was far better against the Colts in Week One than he had shown in preseason games. His quickness gave the Colts fits and he nearly stole the victory over a team that went to the playoffs last year. Pryor made good decisions throughout the majority of the game, however his late interception ended the upset bid.
- OffenseThe Jaguars need some help from their running game. Maurice Jones-Drew is probably the Jaguars’ best offensive player, but he was a non-factor in the opener with 45 yards on 15 carries. Cecil Shorts was one of the Jaguars best players last year and he needs to be a consistent downfield threat.While the Raiders rank near the bottom of the skill-position rankings, running back Darren McFadden still is a decent combination of speed and power. Rod Streater caught five passes for 70 yards against the Colts and he showed that he can get open. Denarius Moore can be a big-play threat who can get downfield and stretch the defense.
- DefenseThe Jaguars have an aggressive group of linebackers who want to put their imprint on the game. The best of the bunch is middle linebacker Paul Posluszny, who had 10 tackles in the loss to the Chiefs. Defensive end Jason Babin had three tackles and a sack and is a decent pass rusher.Former Chicago Bear linebacker Nick Roach is bringing consistency and professionalism to the Raiders defense. He was all over the field in Week One and registered a team-high nine tackles. Strong safety Tyvon Branch had five tackles and a sack when the Raiders brought him on the blitz.
- Special TeamsThere wasn’t much that went right for the Jaguars in Week One, but they had to be pleased with the showing of punter Bryan Anger, who averaged 50.5 yards on 11 punts. Stephen Burton has some speed as a returner and could bust a long one.Sebastian Janikowski has been the Raiders' most consistent weapon for years. He gives them a chance to put points on the board any time the Raiders get inside the opponents’ 50-yard line. Punter Marquette King averaged 50.5 yards on his two punts and was not intimidated by the stage.
While Pryor was near tears after the Raiders lost their Week One heartbreaker at Indianapolis, he should take heart because the Raiders were in the game for 60 minutes. They appeared to be dreadfully overmatched, but they showed surprising heart and nearly stole the game. Look for a solid effort in the home opener. -Steve Silverman, CBS Local Sports contributor