The Las Vegas Raiders have been impressive to start the 2021 season, but they fell short in their Monday Night Football matchup against the Los Angeles Chargers. They couldn’t get anything rolling to start, and it was too little, too late by the time the offense found any rhythm in the second half. It’s time to continue our NFL takeaways series with Raiders Week 4 takeaways.
For whatever reason, it took a while for the Raiders to jump up to speed. The offense couldn’t do anything while the defense struggled to contain the Chargers. Maybe the lightning delay threw Las Vegas off its game plan a bit? Either way, the Raiders find themselves in second place in the AFC West for now.
The most noticeable area of concern in Monday night’s game was how the Raiders couldn’t run the ball. Additionally, Derek Carr didn’t look like the superstar he had the first three games, even though Hunter Renfrow was one of the lone bright spots.
With that said, here are three Raiders Week 4 takeaways from their game against the Chargers.
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Raiders Week 4 Takeaways
3. The run game was completely ineffective
It was a brutal scene, to say the least. Josh Jacobs led the way with just 40 yards on 13 attempts. As a team, Las Vegas ended the evening with a measly 48 rushing yards. It was an abysmal performance as the Raiders couldn’t get anything going on the ground.
The game script didn’t quite work in their favor either. Vegas found themselves down 21-0 going into halftime. For that reason, Jon Gruden had to essentially abandon the run to get back into the game. At the end of the day, the Raiders must improve their rushing attack, as it gives them their best chances of winning.
2. Derek Carr struggled throughout the entire game
In his first three games, Derek Carr exploded for 382 or more passing yards in each contest. It was believed we had a new version of Carr on our hands and he was set up to continue his hot streak on the NFL’s center stage. Instead, he fell flat on his face and put up a weak 196 passing yards.
It was the complete opposite of what we’ve seen out of Carr so far this year. He’s likely to bounce back, but this could be a sign that Carr is just not efficient enough to lead the Raiders to a deep playoff run. We’ll see how it plays out for the rest of the season. If Vegas wants to be taken seriously, they’ll need more efficient play out of Derek Carr.
1. Hunter Renfrow deserves a bigger role
Of everyone on the Raiders’ offensive unit, Hunter Renfrow shined the most on Monday night. Due to the team struggling in general, Renfrow only managed 45 receiving yards and one touchdown. However, he did lead his team in receptions against the Chargers.
Additionally, Renfrow made one of the best plays of the game on a punt return. The Raiders only had 10 men lined up, leaving a Chargers player by himself along the sideline. Renfrow, lined up as the punt returner, noticed the unusual situation, recognized the audible call, and took off toward the Chargers’ open player. Renfrow made a big hit along the sideline at the right time, popping the ball loose and causing a turnover on downs.
It was a brilliant display of football knowledge by Renfrow. Due to his consistency and ability to read the field, Renfrow deserves an even bigger role on the Raiders’ offense.