The Oakland Raiders suffered a 20-point loss in their 2015 season opener, but the blemish on their record might be the least of their worries. A few of the team’s key players were injured in their 33-13 home defeat to the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday.
Second-year quarterback Derek Carr didn’t get much of a chance to help Oakland win in Week 1 because he was forced to leave the game in the second quarter. Carr was hit in the hand as he ran towards the sideline, and didn’t return for the rest of the contest.
#Raiders QB Derek Carr suffered a bruised thumb. X-Rays negative, waiting on MRI results. His status will depend on if swelling goes down
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 14, 2015
Even if the MRI is negative, there’s a good chance the Raiders will be without Carr in Week 2. ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports that Oakland expects Carr to sit against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, and the team is preparing for life in the short term without their No.1 signal caller.
Matt McGloin had a 91.1 passer rating in Carr’s absence, but the backup quarterback didn’t exactly get the job done. He threw for just 142 yards on 31 passes, averaging an abysmal 4.6 yards per attempt. Oakland has reportedly contacted Christian Ponder, who played for the Raiders in the preseason, but didn’t make the team.
With Carr out for the majority of the game, the Raiders’ young offensive weapons didn’t have much of an impact. First-round pick Amari Cooper led the team in receiving, though he ended the game with just 47 yards. Latavius Murray totaled 44 rushing yards on 11 attempts.
The defensive side of the ball for Oakland isn’t any better. Only two teams outscored Cincinnati on Sunday, and the Raiders ended the game with a banged up secondary. Both starting safeties are hurt, and one could be done for the whole year.
Raiders fear safety Nate Allen tore his ACL; more tests today. Oakland's other starting safety Charles Woodson injured shoulder, MRI today.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 14, 2015
Allen was a free agent this summer, and Oakland signed him to a four-year contract, hoping to improve a defense that allowed the most points in the league last season. Allen left the opener in the second quarter with a knee injury, and it was clear right away that he would not return.
Allen got hurt when he collided into teammate Ray-Ray Armstrong, and Woodson injured his shoulder by running into linebacker Malcolm Smith. Woodson hasn’t missed a game for the Raiders since rejoining the team in 2013.
Oakland hosts Baltimore in Week 2 before they go on the road for two straight games. They were the only AFC West team to lose in Week 1.