The Las Vegas Raiders performed disappointingly on the defensive side of the field against the Indianapolis Colts and defensive coordinator Paul Guenther was fired shortly after the game. The Raiders, who entered Week 14 needing a win in order to keep solid chances of making the playoffs, suffered a 44-27 loss to the Colts and their chances of making the postseason diminished with the loss.
"You get to the point where you second-guess everything you're doing offensively every time you punt," Raiders coach Jon Gruden said, as revered on ESPN. "It's tough right now, but you have to stay confident that your players are going to put it together like they did in Kansas City.
"We struggled in the first half in Arrowhead, we found a way to make some plays in the second half. But when you can make it a one-possession game, you have to trust your defense. To be a championship team and a playoff team, you have to be a good football team in all phases."
A tough year for the Raiders on the defensive side
Injuries have played a big part in the Raiders' disappointing statistics on the defense. "I can't tell you one game we've had this year where somebody hasn't had to go in and play more snaps than they thought they [were going to have to] before the game," Guenther said on Thursday.
"So I told the guys, 'Everyone's got to prepare like they are a starting player.' You almost would rather [know] this player is not going to play this week rather than have it happen, say, in the first quarter of the game, where you've got to kind of move the chess pieces around a little bit and change your plan.
So, that's probably been the most challenging thing, in-game adjustments we've had to make. Particularly the last few weeks." The Raiders offense scored 27 points against the Colts but they still suffered a blowout loss.
Raiders quarterback Derek Carr went 31-of-45 for 316 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions against the Colts. Carr wasn't thrilled with his performance either and he noted that he has got to perform better. "My job is to take care of the football, and my job is to move it," Carr said. "A team down the field scores touchdowns, and I didn't do that good enough today. It is what it is."