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Raiders (preseason) aftermath

Posted by Darren Urban on August 13, 2016 – 12:29 am

The score ended up ugly, but this is the preseason, where scores matter little. (I won’t say they don’t matter at all, because sometimes, they do matter if, say, the third game is lopsided.) What the Cards got out of Friday night was safety for their players, especially their starters (always always always the most important thing), decent play from said starters, and a decent outing from a couple of key guys.

Those would be Brandon Williams and D.J. Humphries, and while neither were spectacular, they held up fine. Humphries didn’t fare well against Khalil Mack, but in reality, many do not anyway. He admitted he messed up against Mack, but believes it was mostly from him being overly hyped up to play. Time will tell, but he did play better as time went on (and admittedly, after Mack went out.) Humphries hasn’t answered all the questions yet. And there is probably still a need to consider bringing in a veteran backup tackle. But I still think Humphries will be OK.

At this point, same goes for Williams. He competed again against the Raiders. He thought he was going to be tested and he most certainly was. He gave up a TD. But he battled and the kid is going to learn. We still have almost a month before the Cards play for real. If Justin Bethel gets back soon, he still has a chance to take back the starting job. But Williams will play and he will get better, and even if he is the third cornerback, the Cards will be better for it.

— We barely saw the starters. I couldn’t tell you really what Chandler Jones had. Carson Palmer had a near-pick early with pressure in his face, but he led a scoring drive. The Cardinals have to get the ball in the end zone after getting a first down inside the 10, but that should come.

— David Johnson looked like he was in midseason form already. Midseason form during a really good season.

— Andre Ellington showed again why the Cards have liked him so much. Health makes a big difference.

— If the Cards can get that out of tight end Troy Niklas, he’ll be the guy they expected with a second-round pick. Again, health matters.

— Drew Stanton was high on some throws, and hopefully that was just first-game issues. I’m sure Arians was hoping to see more from Matt Barkley. I would expect Stanton and then Palmer to eat up most of the QB playing time the next two games, so we’ll see how many more opportunities Barkley gets in game situations.

— The Cards are off Saturday, and get back to practice Sunday morning. Remember, no open practice at University of Phoenix Stadium until after the Chargers game.

NiklasRaidersBlog


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Posted in Blog | 38 Comments »


38 Responses to “Raiders (preseason) aftermath”

  1. By Steve on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Darren: Of all the rookies who played tonight, did Brandon Williams impress you the most?

  2. By Darren Urban on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Steve —

    RE: Rookies

    To be honest, he is the one I watched the most closely. Not sure, for example, how Boehm did, or Christian. Williams still has a ways to go.

  3. By georgiebird on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    If everything was so funny, why wasn’t BA laughing?

  4. By Darren Urban on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Georgie —

    RE: Laughing

    Funny?

  5. By Jo on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Was happy to see some good players back. Lots of work to do on ones that want to stay on the team. I wish them a great year.

  6. By Big Ken on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    I didn’t recall any dumb penalties from the O-Line, false starts, holding, etc. Impressive since there’s so many new guys out there fighting for a job.

  7. By clssylssy on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Well, that was beyond ugly! Seems we did get some questions answeref though and I can only hope Keim is feeling some sense of urgency to find us some QB depth and it appears our young secondary isn’t any kind of “No Fly Zone”. We continue to have many of the lingering problems we’ve had in the past on not being able to convert and score TDs; we seem to freeze up anytime we get near the redzone! This team has NEVER done well handling the spotlight and last night we had that “deer in the headlights” look again.
    I know many will rationalize that this is “just preseason” but when you strip away the safety net of your Larry Fitz, Honey Badger, you see what you really have and the team last night isn’t even in the same air space as the backups the Pattiots played on Thursday night.
    We’ve got a VERY LONG WAY to go to live up to the hype!

  8. By Brett in Colorado on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    I know that it is the first preseason game but Barkley not impressed!

  9. By JohnnyBluenose on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    I only saw the first half and although I realize it was just an exhibition game and it was not the real Cardinals playing I am still disappointed that we lost. David Johnson, Ellington and Niklas certainly looked good on offense. Taylor and Kerwin Williams played well too but which one of them makes the team? Okafor played well too. I am still not sure about Humphries. He seemed to play with lots of energy but I remember one play where either Johnson or Ellington made a long run and near the end of it Humphries needlessly pushed one of the Raiders in the back. I was surprised he was not flagged and, if he was, it would have cost us 50 yards. Palmer seems to be going out of his way to praise Humphries in the same way that BA once said that Levi Brown was a pro bowler. We will soon see if Humphries has what it takes to help our team this year. I hope so but I’m far from convinced right now.

  10. By Bay Area Bad Boy on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    First Games are tough to decipher…… But I will say I was not impressed. Good this is, Its Preseason Game 1 and no real injuries. I think the Raiders exposed the defense as I expected them to. For me the defense is the big question mark as it was last year. I’m not sold on our Defensive Coordinator but I hope all the pieces come together this year and they all shine. I’m interested in seeing how they place in game two. Game one is a glorified scrimmage. It just exposes things the coaches are already aware of. We will be fine come regular season, but I was not impressed with the defenses effort.

  11. By texascard on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Williams had 16 games to grow. We need him. Go cards

  12. By greenbridge27 on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Stanton throwing high has been a problem of his since he has been here. It will eventually get a reciever hurt. I know it’s Williams first game but he has a lot of work to improve.

  13. By Andy Kw on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    It is best to make all of the mistakes now then make most of them in the regular season. I think DJ did a solid job. Playing against arguably the best pass rusher in the league in Khalil Mack will only make DJ Humphries better. He did a solid job in both the pass and run protection. Additional help on his side goes a long way towards making him feel comfortable protecting on his own. With more experience on the field comes more growth. He definitely sounds more matured and seems more focused than ever. He just needs to take every game one play at a time and try not to do too much. I feel more comfortable with him as our RT now than I ever did before the game. Though I think the Cardinals should sign a vet OT to back him up anyways, maybe Jake Long should be an option.
    -As for Niklas, I’m excited to see his growth. Finally we see what we have expected of him. Let’s see if he can continue this success consistently. Turning 24 this year, he can finally make a case for himself to possibly be a starting TE for the Cardinal next season since both Gresham and Fells’ contracts expire.

  14. By joe holst on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    3 observations- (1) I think they only keep 2 QB’s. (2) Drew Stanton looks sometimes like he just throws it deep w/out knowing where the ball is going. (3) Sebastian Janikowski looks like he could easily kick into his 50’s.

  15. By shannon robinson on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    I loved going to the game! Have lots of feedback which is best to dole out in short & hopefully sweet comments. I’m defending DJ Humphries mostly because he hung in there. He needs game time at the highest level of competition as soon as possible and that really means an entire NFL season. Carson’s right. Bringing in a veteran now reminds me not of the Eric Winston move but more like when Coach Bugel kept his tired Hogs and let a real good center and guard go who then played a lot of years in the league. I thought the second string line played well so I think we have more depth than people think. Toner played left and right guard and was the fourth center in warmups. Evan Boehm finished the entire game after AQ left with the Ones. He called the MIC accurately and blocked his man and a couple times he was way down field clearing out guys! He needs NFL experience and they gave it to him. Niklas got the fans instagram vote for most impact player of the game over Ellington which tells you how happy the Stadium was to see him be a monster blocker and start getting open like a money TE. Prayer works.

  16. By dynosoar on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    My thoughts,

    first BA wasn’t calling the plays, Goodwin was and with more experience Goodwin will get better. He called more “shots” than last season so that’s great. I’m excited to see what Goodwin does as a full time play caller, after he gets a head coaching job. Because that means we win a lot more than other teams (a Super Bowl ring would be fantastic)

    It’s a scrimmage and BA wasn’t calling the plays. We’ll be fine.

    I also had an epiphany of sorts, after several weeks of playing each other without going all out in practices regarding tackling, they need practice to get into tackling at full speed again. This will improve with some more games.

    I liked Humphries and Niklas. I liked Floyd’s catch, many have commented over the years (and I may have been one) that Floyd is not as consistent as Fitzgerald (but outside of just five or six across the league, who is?), well if he does what he did last night and consistently, this is going to be awesome.

    This is going to be a sweet season.

  17. By erik on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Not the best showing, but no one got hurt. The starters did well, a little rust is expected. You people worried about Barkley and QB depth crack me up! Do you really think if Palmer goes down this team has a chance anyways? That is just reality.

  18. By John S on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Cardinals started off right where they left off from Carolina.. unprepared, sloppy, out coached and overall looking horrible. BA needs to light some fires.

  19. By Kevin S Mesa on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    clssylssy —

    QB depth? You think there is a team in the NFL that has a chance with their #3 guy? A lot of teams don’t even carry three.

    We have one of the best #2 guys in the biz… remember, he was 5-3 the year Palmer was out for extended time.

  20. By Richard S on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Impressions: Niklas looks good. In prior years I’ve been impressed with the depth of the team. Last night I was impressed with the depth of the Raider’s team. But then again, I guess a lot of the guys on the current version won’t be on the final roster. A lot of missed tackles.

  21. By rod on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    Raiders are a top tier team and they showed it. I don’t want to run into them again.

  22. By John The Draft Guy on Aug 13, 2016 | Reply

    The game the way I saw it;

    – Cards starting offense went down the field to the 4 yrd line before a bad play call stalled the drive. This offense would have shredded the raiders. Not worried at all.

    – Oline showed what I wanted to see. DJ had holes against the starters and Ellington did well with second team. I thought Humphries did fine.

    – As for Brandon Williams, I respectfully disagree with you Darren. The kid had slow feet and was bad at his jams. He could have been burnt for at least 4 TDs if the balls were on target and if Cooper didn’t drop one.

    People this is a huge problem and if someone else is not brought in via a trade or late cut, we will be in trouble. Williams wasn’t there but just didn’t make a play. He was beat at the line of scrimmage. He looked bad. I mean really bad. His speed didn’t show up, his feet were bad, his hips weren’t fluid, he was terrible in his jam.

    Can he get better? Yes. I am not saying he is a bust or to give up on him. But we need a polished CB and let the kid learn in practice. The door is clearly open for Bethel or Mike Jenkins to take. I begged for a first round CB and I really wish we would have drafted a first round Cb instead of Nkemdichi (who didn’t play.)

    – Christian – He comes and hits hard. He missed an open field tackle, but had a huge hit later. Hard to know his coverage skills not knowing the calls, but he could eventually develop into a starter but Swearinger is clearly the starter. I like Jefferson at safety too.

    – I thought Okafer returned to his 2014 form. He looked good against both the run and pass. He will be a solid OLB to rotate in.

    – I noticed Gunter player a lot of DE while X. Williams was at Nose. Gunter is going to be the guy who takes CC’s spot eventually. He is going to be pretty decent.

    – Harlen Miller was average. Not sure he is flashing enough to stick.

    – Jaxon Shipley and Chris Hubert dropped passes. Can’t see any way these guys make the team.

    – Troy Niklas looked good. On a 32 yard pass play, it seemed he ran over the whole raider team. He was wide open for a TD and Stanton missed him with a horrible pass.

    – Finally, pray Palmer never goes down. I thought Stanton looked bad. He missed high several times plus an INT. If the cards drafted a QB like Dak Prescott (looked good for Dallas today) I would say Stanton has something to worry about. Unfortunately, there is nothing behind him (although Barkley had several drops that hurt him). I thought the cards should have upgraded Stanton in the drat before the cards resigned him.

  23. By Daniel Thompson on Aug 14, 2016 | Reply

    Thought we had The Gronk.

  24. By texascard on Aug 14, 2016 | Reply

    Correction. Has. Williams has 16 games to grow.

    Classy. There is no qb depth coming. Health is paramount to sb run

  25. By CARDS62 on Aug 14, 2016 | Reply

    Preseason game 1. Lets not get too excited. Some good but two big negatives for me. First the good 1) No injuries 2) Offensive line not perfect, but I felt they played very well and we ran the ball well. 3) David Johnson, Ellington, Troy N., M. Floyd, A. Okafor flashed. 4) Very few penalties. Can not say I was happy with our rookie CB Williams game, but we put him on an island a lot of times so I am not upset, but a little worried. CB needs confidence so hope coaching staff gives him a little more help in game 2, but I liked their game plan for game 1, Hey rookie welcome to the NFL and you have a lot to learn. We had no sacks and really did not get after the QB again, too many turnovers again leaving our defense on the field too much, and I remember 4 big drop passes.
    Two big negatives that probably will carry over to regular season.
    1) Our return teams still stink. First team returner, Nelson, fumbles early on little contact and we usually can not even get the ball to the 20 on kickoffs and nothing on punt returns.
    2) Drew Stanton did not look good again. What has happened to this guy since 2014? I think he should go on Dancing with the Stars. If Carson goes down we are done.

    Well on to San Diego as the football routine is back.

    Go Cards!

  26. By Scott H on Aug 14, 2016 | Reply

    Didn’t see the game, saw extensive highlights. Really, with the starters being out so quickly, this was the Raiders back-ups beating our back-ups. Not that that’s OK, but…..it’s always more about how certain guys look than the score. Heck, we’ve had pre-seasons in years gone by where the Cardinals would run up scores like that and win games big, then the season would start and they would go 5-11. So….be careful what you take from a first pre-season game.

    Looks to me like two unfortunate TO’s and two big runs by a Raiders RB I never heard of were pretty much the story, at least as far as the game was concerned. I didn’t like the Stanton pick OR the Nelson fumble. Nelson isn’t gonna nail down the return man job by playing like this.

    But great to see Humphries on the field….Mack is just a beast and I remember him having a field day last year in the pre-season against us. I ain’t gonna judge Humphries based soley on that. Good to see Ellington looking good but…yeah, health matters, but I gotta see him STAYING healthy before I get excited about that. Nice to see Niklas making some plays! And great to hear that DJ looks ready to pick right up where he left off. This man could lead the NFL in all-purpose yards this season. They really hit the jack-pot in the 3rd round last year.

    Hoping to see more of the starters in the next 2 games.

  27. By John The Draft Guy on Aug 14, 2016 | Reply

    OK, Steve Keim. Since you did not draft a CB in the first round like Makenzie Alexander, who I begged for, (BTW, he had an INT in his first game) pay attention to a trade.

    The Bills are locked into a salary battle with CB Stephon Gilmore, who is a very good CB. Looks like he could just play out his contract and leave bills at end of season (of course Bills could slap on Franchise tag-if they want a disgruntled player)

    The cards have Michael Floyd, who personally, I don’t think they can afford next year. I also think Brown, Brown and Nelson can fill the void if Floyd was gone.

    So, with the Bills giving a monster deal to QB Tyrod Tyler, and needing another WR weapon, this is a trade that could make sense for both teams.

    CB Stephon Gilmore for Michael Floyd. If Gilmore walks after we win the super bowl so be it. Maybe Williams could give it another shot with another year under his belt. But the object is to win this year. This would give us a great chance to do that.

    I will say it again, we will need to score a lot of points to win if we have Williams starting. He is not ready.

  28. By TLT fka DTL on Aug 14, 2016 | Reply

    In the end, figured out at least for myself that it is mostly sadness coming that some really good guys and players will be cut. But saw enough at the game and on re-watch last night to see the lines may be clearing.

    I’ve got:

    2 QB
    4 RB
    4 TE
    5 WR
    9 OL
    for 24 total O
    3 Special teams, 2 kickers, 1 snapper
    DL 8
    OLB 5
    ILB 4
    S 5
    CB 4
    for 26 total D
    Seems biggest issue may be an extra DL to get 9 vs an extra OLB to stay at 5.

    Naming names a little silly, after all, what do I know? Lol, not so much, but at least this process each year helps me get prepared for the let down when we see some rally good guys let go…

    Go Cards.

    PS One key take away from the game, only 2 QBs that can play, and only 1 that plays really well…

  29. By Marcelof on Aug 15, 2016 | Reply

    John The Draft Guy –

    Regarding B. Williams. I didn’t watch to whole game, but was he paired against Cooper? Well, for all the hype I’ve heard of him I admit I was expecting more, although we all must agree it was his first game as a pro, from which we may not get to any conclusions yet. Assumptions, yes.

    I’m far from having 10% of the knowledge you got, yet I believe our DC is smart enough not to let our weakside of CB battle alone. Time to get the skin off this kid, test him as much as possible, it’s offseason, after all there wouldn’t be hype if there wasn’t talent to be seen.

    Well, let’s wait the next three games to down our hands on this.

  30. By clssylssy on Aug 15, 2016 | Reply

    Kevin– who said anything about the #3 guy, I said QB depth meaning anybody who would have to come in and lead this team AFTER Palmer. This isn’t the same team as before, and we cant look to this defense to carry us if we sustain key losses to the offense. This secondary got torched and it appears we made some bad decisions in a very important yesr. Some of these little speedsters MAY develop in time or they may end up like Ellington on IR most of the time.
    Since the NFL doesnt have the luxery of teaching technique and basic skills like tackling, our “bargain” finds some smaller schools may have raw talent but be so far behind the curve as to never immediately be able to step into a critical position. I sure wish we would have kept Powers & Johnson and still hope Keim will get the DC a consultant/advisor to act in a Tom Moore capacity.
    The Seahawks & Rams were both impressive and we should be concerned!

  31. By Scott H on Aug 15, 2016 | Reply

    But it IS the pre-season! 32 teams played this weekend. Some looked good, some did not. I don’t think Vegas is changing their SB odds based on how ANYBODY played. I am no more dismayed by how the Cardinals played than I am worried because the Rams and Seahawks were supposedly impressive. Not after one pre-season game and the FIRST pre-season game, at that.

    There is not a team out there that has no concerns attached to them right now. The Rams are starting a rookie QB this year. That seldom goes well. The Seahawks took some real hits to their O-line and that is going to affect them this year. They also no longer have Lynch to run their offense through. And the Pats could very well start their season 0-4 or 1-3 without Brady. Never mind how it looks in week ONE of the pre-season. The regular season has its way of shuffling the deck and putting everyone pretty much where they should be, so….let’s see where how it looks then.

    BTW, we should probably be worried about the Seahawks, anyway, because they ARE one of the best teams in the league and are ALREADY a legit SB contender. They could have looked awful this weekend and it wouldn’t have swayed me at all. They could look horrible in every pre-season game they play this summer. They would still be ( and they are ) at the TOP of the list of teams I would worry about.

  32. By rod on Aug 15, 2016 | Reply

    I thought we were a deep team… Being handled like we were means w are not s stacked as e thought we were.

  33. By CARDS62 on Aug 15, 2016 | Reply

    JTDG

    Interesting idea about your trade for CB Gilmore for our WR Floyd. Would not hate the trade, but I am going to keep Floyd for this season. Floyd is 6-3 225 and I think his replacement would be Jaron Brown 6-2 205. Brown has definitely flashed for us, but Floyd is a sure thing in 2015 and I just feel he is going to have a monster year for us in 2016. I question Floyd’s motor, but never his talent. Fitz is my favorite of all time, but today I feel Floyd is the most talented WR on the roster and that Floyd opens the game up for the Brown’s, and JJ, and Fitz. Lets give Carson all his weapons this year, and have our front 7 get after the QB more this year to make our DBs life easier. Plus we know injuries are a part of the game and John Brown and JJ Nelson are painfully thin.

    I do not know his health or money he is looking for, but A Cromartie our old corner is no longer with the Jets. What do you and others think about signing this free agent CB? As for me I think he is worth a plane ticket to bring in and work out as he knows our defense. I think Bethel will be okay not great but okay and can not wait to have Honey Badger back on the field.

    Go Cards!

  34. By John The Draft Guy on Aug 15, 2016 | Reply

    Marcelof ,

    Williams;

    I’m not saying he is a bust or that he will never be the guy they think he can be.

    My argument is simple. If we say we are a super bowl team and this is our year, we can not enter the season with such a huge hole at CB.

    Maybe he plays better. But going into a season with maybe’s can be the thing that ends your season. I would rather find a vet, solidify the spot, and let Williams learn at a healthy pace.

    As for Cooper, yes Williams started with him, but he got beat for a TD against a back up receiver. But Do you think the patriots are going to say, hey your a rookie, so we won’t give you anyone tough? The NFL is full of tough good receivers.

  35. By clssylssy on Aug 16, 2016 | Reply

    Scott…even w/o Brady the Pats look solid and the Seahawks don’t need Lynch to be even better than they were last year b/c they have solid backups and are a very physical team.
    Yes it’s only the first preseason game but after all the hype and crowing, that was extremely disappointing. I would rather hear we look like crap then be pleasantly surprised to not see an extended version of the Panthers game!

  36. By Chiquita on Aug 16, 2016 | Reply

    It’s only pre season…

    THE JOURNEY WILL BE JUST AS IMPORTANT AS THE DESTINATION (SUPER BOWL)

    Go Cardinals

  37. By Scott H on Aug 17, 2016 | Reply

    clssy –

    Yes, the Pats are always a solid team ( well coached and well-prepared ), so I would expect that from them. But just as we cannot be as good with Stanton as we are with Palmer, they cannot be as good with a back-up as they are with Brady.

    The overall point is that ( IMHO ), there can be no direct comparison between a pre-season game and a regular season game. So, I’m taking everything with a grain of salt right now.

    And what you say about the Seahawks is right on. That’s why what they look like in the pre-season is totally irrelevant to me. We know that come the regular season, they will be who we know they are. They tend to start seasons a bit slow and sluggish but by the halfway point, they find their groove and start to hit their stride at just the right time.

    THAT is what I hope the Cardinals can do this year – to play at their peak when it matters most.

  38. By Roberto Vasquez on Aug 21, 2016 | Reply

    PALMER SUCKS , Stanton sucks wake up

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