The Las Vegas Raiders had a valiant win in Week 7 over the Philadelphia Eagles to stay afloat over the last two weeks despite their coach Jon Gruden resigning due to off-the-field issues. The Raiders now sit atop the AFC West at 5-2 after their 33-22 victory.
Star quarterback Derek Carr had an efficient game, leading the Raiders to a high-scoring game. The defense was also able to hold the Eagles in check by forcing a couple of turnovers.
Here are three Raiders takeaways from their Week 7 victory over the Eagles.
3. The defense is emerging
The Raiders defense is emerging into a great group that could propel them on a postseason run. They have been able to create turnovers this season as well as put pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Against the Eagles, the Raiders recovered two fumbles, which gave the offense more opportunities to score.
Defensive end Yannick Ngakoue was a key contributor as he had two sacks on Eagles QB Jalen Hurts. Ngakoue has been a big addition to the Raiders defense since he was acquired in free agency. With defensive players rising to their potential, the Raiders will be a tough team to score on.
2. Derek Carr can be the franchise quarterback
Over the past few seasons, Carr’s future with the Raiders has been questioned for the long term. He, however, has put those rumors behind him and has become a reliable quarterback. Against the Eagles, Carr threw for 323 yards along with two touchdowns and one interception. He also had an incredible completion percentage of 91.2 percent.
Carr’s numbers may not be elite compared to the top signal-callers in the NFL, but he has led the Raiders to success. He has one year left on his contract, and the team now needs to focus on keeping him for the long run. Look for Carr to continue playing great and help them make the NFL Playoffs.
1. Raiders can win without Jon Gruden
A big question after Gruden resigned was how the Raiders will perform. Well, they have continued to play at a high level, winning both of their games thus far without the disgraced tactician. A win over the Eagles showed that the Raiders finally have the roster to make a playoff run. They not only scored 33 points but held the Eagles to just 22 points, showing production on both sides of the ball.
They are in a talented division, but they have control over it at the moment. They are in a group with the 4-2 Los Angeles Chargers, 3-4 Kansas City Chiefs, and 3-4 Denver Broncos. All of the teams in the AFC could make the postseason, so divisional games will have an extra emphasis moving forward.
The Raiders leading the AFC West is a big surprise as the Chiefs were heavily favored to top it entering the season. With the Chiefs underperforming, the Raiders have taken advantage and could make their first NFL Playoffs appearance since 2016.
Rich Bisaccia has done a great job after being named interim coach. He has kept the Raiders on track, which isn’t easy to accomplish following a controversy within the organization. This week, the Raiders have their bye week, which will give them much-needed rest after a strong win. The Raiders have a relatively tough schedule ahead and it will be a real test for the emerging team.
Look for the Raiders to make it to the postseason even without Gruden.