Sluggish first half contributes to Raiders' first loss of the season
Thanks to a poor first half effort, the Las Vegas Raiders suffered their first loss of the 2021 season at the hands of AFC West rival LA Chargers 28-14 on Monday Night Football, Oct. 4.
Las Vegas was down 21-0 at halftime thanks to three first-half touchdowns from Chargers’ quarterback Justin Herbert.
Las Vegas quarterback Derek Carr had a poor start in the first half thanks to defensive end Joey Bosa, who was sure to let everyone know how he felt about Carr following the game.
"We knew once we hit him a few times, he really gets shook,” Bosa told The Athletic. “And you saw on (Covington's) sack, he was pretty much curling into a ball before we even got back there. Great dude, great player...but we know once you get pressure on him, he kind of shuts down."
Las Vegas will get a chance to rebound Sunday, Oct. 10 at home versus the Chicago Bears and rookie quarterback Justin Fields.
Kickoff is at 1:05 pm.
Carr and the rest of the Raiders were visibly frustrated from the get-go, even with the “home” advantage thanks to the traveling and incumbent Raider fans in Los Angeles.
Herbert found tight ends Donald Parham and Jared Cook, as well as running back Austin Ekeler all for touchdowns in the first half.
Las Vegas’ defense seemed to have more focus on the deep ball, as Cook made his living in the flats catching six passes for 70 yards.
The scheme was also evident as result of star wide receiver Keenan Allen’s night: seven receptions for 36 yards.
However , the third quarter belonged to Las Vegas.
Carr found slot receiver Hunter Renfrow on a nifty “China” route.
On the next drive, Carr would lob a beauty to tight end Darren Waller, who muscled the ball away from his defender to bring Las Vegas within one score, 21-14.
Herbert and the Chargers would execute offensively to put the game away in the fourth quarter thanks to Ekeler’s second touchdown of the game, this time on the ground.
Las Vegas had multiple chances to kill drives on defense, but could not get off the field as Herbert was able to find multiple receivers on underneath crossing routes.
The game is one for Las Vegas to crumble up and toss away as the team heads home.
Running back Josh Jacobs made his return, but to no avail rushing 13 times for 40 yards.
He, and the rest of the silver-and-black will look to rebound against Chicago this Sunday.