Connor Cook likely to be named starter for the Raiders' playoff game

06 January, 2017, 00:57 | Author: Felix Jensen
  • 9783070-connor-cook-nfl-oakland-raiders-denver-broncos-850x560

Brock Osweiler regains his starting spot because of Tom Savage's concussion. The more plays they make, they can start to believe that hey, maybe they can win despite their circumstances.

Cook is expected to get the start here and if he does then he would become the first quarterback in the Super Bowl era to make his first National Football League start in the postseason. Derek Carr's injury marred what had been one of the NFL's best stories in Oakland, but the Raiders still have plenty of talent on both sides of the ball. Whispers about his leadership and questions about his ability might have factored in. Cook is a smart guy that can make all the throws.

He finished the game 14-for-21 with 150 yards, a touchdown and an interception. They can only watch a handful of snaps from a regular season game to prepare for Cook. Realistically, the rest of the Raiders need to rally around him. The running game is potent. They faced the Broncos first, and now open the playoffs on Saturday in Houston.

Why they'll lose: We already know the answer, but let's find another reason.

Veteran left tackle Duane Brown was also impressed with Osweilers work on Sunday. And the Steelers' offense saved its best for last, ranking second in the National Football League at 9.1 fourth-quarter points per contest. Oakland had a NFL-low 25 sacks, even with Mack getting 11. Are they able to refocus a week removed from that devastating injury? All that, plus better play on defense, plus a bit more luck, and that might be the recipe.

In any case, Cook now will get the benefit of a full week of practice reps, the lack of which made it tough for him on Sunday.

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Key player: QB Brock Osweiler. "We played three good quarters against them last time".

On top of that, if there's anything that Osweiler's proven this season, it's that he still has a whole lot to prove. "I'm going to still prep as if I'm playing; it doesn't matter if I'm backup, starter or whatever". It will be interesting to see how Osweiler handles the pressure of being re-inserted into the lineup for a playoff game. He was asked if he expects to see a different player than he did when Oakland beat the Texans in Mexico City on November 21. Houston is allowing 301.3 yards per game. The Texans will try to pick up their 11straight win as a favorite this Saturday at home against the Oakland Raiders. Not to beat a Bill O'Brien-coached Texans team. They had a minus-49 point differential. The latter stat is most disconcerting when it comes to evaluating a team at playoff time. If they lose, it's no mystery why: It's because they weren't a good team throughout the season. Lamar Miller can be explosive at times but Oakland's defense will be looking for him. The unit has been exceptional this season, with safety Quintin Demps nabbing an interception in five of his last six games (and earning AFC defensive player of the month honors), and cornerback A.J. "I understand the arm strength and size and his mobility and decision-making and all those type of things, and we'll get ourselves prepared and do the best we can". It wasn't a great job of executing by the Oakland Raiders.

Plunkett himself supplanted a starter during the 1980 season, when Dan Pastorini broke his leg in September.

The Jags' next postseason trip, during the 2007 season, featured Del Rio's first career postseason win as a head coach, and with Garrard leading the offense to a 31-29 win over Pittsburgh and Ben Roethlisberger.

In losing their finale at Denver, the Raiders also surrendered the AFC West title, No. 2 seed and first-round bye, with Kansas City claiming those.

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