It’s the run defense one game, the pass defense the next and the running game almost every week that is holding the Raiders back.
The problems keep mounting almost as fast as the point total for the opposition.
A week after being gashed on the ground by Doug Martin and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Raiders were taken apart through the air by Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens in a 55-20 loss Sunday that matched a franchise worst for points allowed in a game.
“That outcome was unacceptable,” coach Dennis Allen said Monday. “We have to be better than that.”
After overhauling the defensive system in the offseason and bringing in the team’s first defensive-minded head coach in decades, the Raiders (3-6) are on pace to allow the most points in franchise history.
They have allowed at least 40 points in back-to-back games for the first time in a half-century and the 97 points over the past two weeks are the second-most in a two-game span in team history.
“I wish there was a magical answer,” Allen said. “I know everybody wants a magical, ‘This is the solution,’ but at the end of the day, and I’ve said this over and over, it’s about us doing our job the right way every single time.”
The Raiders spent most of the week trying to fix a run defense that allowed 278 yards the previous week in a 42-32 loss to Tampa Bay. They did a good job slowing down Ray Rice, holding him to 35 yards on 13 carries, and allowed just 2.8 yards per carry overall.
It didn’t matter much as Flacco repeatedly found tight ends Dennis Pitta and Ed Dickson open over the middle and connected on two deep touchdowns to Torrey Smith as the Ravens easily picked apart the Oakland secondary.
Now they need to fix the pass defense quickly with Drew Brees and the rapidly improving New Orleans Saints coming to town this week.
NOTES: McFadden and Mike Goodson remain in walking boots for their sprained right ankles and their status this week remains in question. DT Richard Seymour is in a similar situation with a hamstring injury. ... Backup LB Travis Goethel has a torn ACL in his left knee and will be out for the rest of the season. ... TE Brandon Myers and S Matt Giordano have concussions and are going through the protocol. ... RT Khalif Barnes is on target to return to the starting lineup this week for the first time since injuring his groin Sept. 16.