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Raiders preseason week three Ballers & Busters: Part two

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The Ballers are present and accounted for. Time to lay some blame.

Busters

Nick Roach

We have now covered every one of the first team linebackers in this game. None of whom stunk it up near as bad as Roach. He wasn't stopping much of anything in this game and Aaron Rodgers was just toying with him. He gave up a 32-yard catch to tight end Richard Rodgers on the first drive. Then on the next play he missed a tackle on a 13-yard run. After the Packers scored their touchdown on that drive -- thanks in large part to Roach -- they went for two. He was late getting to the hole to allow the conversion for the 8-0 Packers lead. He started the next Packers drive the same way - he was late in coverage to give up a 9-yard catch. Then later in the drive, he was to cover the running back out of the backfield third down. He opted to leave the running back and go after Rodgers, who saw this and, of course, shoveled the ball to James Starks for a 9-yard gain to set up fourth and one. The first play of the second quarter featured Roach getting blocked on a 31-yard run to set up the Packers' second touchdown. On the following drive Roach missed a tackle and when Sio Moore changed direction to try and stop it, he received the hard hit in the side of the head that had him carried out on a stretcher with a neck strain. Not a good day for Roach. And in a shining example of 'numbers often lie', Roach led the team with 8 combined tackles (6 solo).

Matt Schaub

Schaub got a lot of criticism for his play in this game. Upon further review, he probably didn't deserve to have it all heaped onto his shoulders. Though he did have a pretty poor game. He started out with a couple good short completions to James Jones but it was MJD who did the heavy lifting, finishing it off with his big 40-yard run. After that, it was five-straight three-and-outs for the Raiders offense. The first one ended with a checkdown to McFadden on third and 14 that went for a loss. That won't get it done. The second one, ended with Jones slipping on his route and Schaub nearly getting picked. The third began with Schaub throwing wide and incomplete and ended with pressure in his face and an incompletion. The fourth three-and-out, he threw incomplete to a covered Mychal Rivera. The fifth one Schaub threw off-target intended for Jones and the Packers blitzes on third and nine to end the series.

The next series, Schaub was looking like he would get things going. It began with three-straight completions for 38 yards. Then he threw two passes in which the Packers defenders were able to read and had time to defend. The second of which popped in the air and was nearly intercepted. He threw the ball away on third and ten and while going for it on fourth and ten, he was ‘running' from pressure and had the ball knocked out for the fumble.

He came back out to begin the third quarter and after a risky pass that went for 40 yards to Denarius Moore, he took three good shots at the endzone. The first was dropped by James Jones (although it looked like a catch to me). The second was a wide open drop by Marcel Reece, and the third sailed over Rod Streater's head in the back of the endzone. Thus ended his day. It would have been nicer to have had one of those touchdown passes caught at the end there but it would not have made up for the rest of his day.

Donald Penn

He found himself with no one to block on a designed blitz and was late to recognize it and get over to stop the oncoming linebacker who forced Schaub into an incompletion. That was on third down to end the Raiders final series of the first quarter - their second straight three-and-out. Then he was beaten on the block to give up the pressure that flushed Schaub from the pocket where he was sacked and fumbled the ball away. Then on the final play before the hail mary attempt to end the first half, he was called for holding. That'll do it.

Justin Tuck

Where was he in this game? Did anyone see him? I saw him. Barely. Mostly while he was being swallowed up by Packers offensive linemen. He was blocked for a 4-yard run on the first play of the game. Then on third and six, he was called for a neutral zone infraction. A few plays later, he was blocked on a 17-yard run that went to the 4-yard line and set up the opening drive touchdown. That touchdown? It went right through Tuck's position and he missed the tackle. Tackling wasn't something Tuck did much of in this game at all. He had no solo tackles and just one assist credited to him in 41 snaps with no other stats. No hurries, no nothing.

Jonathan Dowling, Chance Casey

These two were part of the second team changeover in the third quarter. And Packers' quarterback Scott Tolzien was having his way with them. First it was Dowling who missed a tackle - something he does quite a bit - for a 19-yard gain which set up a Packers' field goal and a 25-7 lead. The first play of the fourth quarter Casey was late getting over to give up a 15-yard catch. On the next play, Dowling went for the strip on his receiver and ended up simply missing the tackle and giving up a 15-yard gain himself. The Packers would drive for a touchdown to go up 31-7 on a touchdown pass in which Dowling was way late getting over to help. On the following drive, Casey's receiver got behind him for a 15-yard catch. Then later in the drive, he gave up a 6-yard catch.

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