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Week 8 Game Recap: Oakland Raiders 24, Houston Texans 27
What you need to know
-The Raiders had their starting offensive line together for the first time all season in this one but it didnít last long. Center Rodney Hudson went down with a first-half ankle injury that could keep him out for a while.
broke a tackle on a short slant and sprinted for a 65-yard touchdown.
returned after missing three weeks with plantar fasciitis and grabbed a 46-yard touchdown.
was a little bit off throwing to Darren Waller
, completed just 2-of-8 passes to him but the pair did hook up for an 8-yard touchdown.
Wide receiver DeAndre Carter
received all the slot snaps on Sunday against the Raiders. He one reception for 46 yards and still had all of the kick and punt return duties for the game.
was healthy but did not get a single offensive snap on Sunday, O'Brien discussed that he needed to get him into the game plan more. His situation is worth monitoring moving forward.
remains out with a hamstring injury, Kenny Stills
assumed his role in the offense.
|QB Derek Carr, 56 offensive snaps, Pass: 18 - 30 - 285 - 3 TD / 0 INT|
Carr performed well on the road in a tough environment. He threw an 8-yard touchdown to Darren Waller
, who ran it in after catching a short dump off. Hunter Renfrow
also did most of the work on his 65-yard touchdown. He caught a quick slant and split a pair of defenders to get loose for a long run after the catch. Carrís best play was his 46-yard touchdown pass to Tyrell Williams
. He was able to buy time by rolling to his right and then made an accurate pass while getting hit that allowed Williams to catch it in stride and take it the rest of the way to the end zone. Carr was a little off with his accuracy targeting Darren Waller
. He just missed him high a couple times and also had Waller open on a key fourth-quarter third down play and threw it too low, allowing the trailing linebacker to get his hands on it.
|RB Josh Jacobs, 31 offensive snaps, Rush: 15 - 66 - 0, Rec: 2 - 15 - 0 (2 targets)|
Jacobs had 17 touches despite playing just 31 snaps. He started the game off by getting around the edge for 13 yards, running through an arm tackle attempt that nearly ripped his jersey. He again got to the edge and accelerated on a second-quarter run for 22 yards. The Raiders tried the same play on the next drive but J.J. Watt exploded into the backfield to drop Jacobs for a 6-yard loss. It was another solid performance from Jacobs who gutted through a nagging shoulder injury.
Washington didnít get many opportunities but was able to gain solid yardage on each of his carries and caught his lone target.
|RB Jalen Richard, 17 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 3 - 0, Rec: 2 - 24 - 0 (3 targets)|
Richard played 30% of the snaps, his most since Week 3. He made a 20-yard grab, beating a linebacker with a quick cut back to the middle of the field. He showed nice acceleration to split a pair of defenders to get into the second level.
Renfrow played 64% of the snaps, his most since Week 2. He caught a short slant and was able to stay on his feet through attempted arm tackles by the cornerback and safety to get loose for a 65-yard touchdown. He was called for an offensive pass interference penalty on a rub route where he tried to get in the way of the linebacker to free up Darren Waller
Williams returned after a 3-week absence due to plantar fasciitis and stepped right back into the No. 1 wide receiver role. He led the group in snaps (89%), targets (6) and yards (91). He made his first grab, for 23 yards, early in the third quarter, catching the ball over his shoulder along the right sideline. Two plays later, Williams almost came down with a pretty 30-yard catch down the left sideline. He leaped over the defender and hauled it in but the ball popped out of his hands as he hit the turf. Carr went back to him the very next play and Williams came wide open on a deep crossing route, grabbing it and sprinting into the end zone for a 46-yard touchdown. Williams caught a deep out route along the sideline for a 22-yard gain. Williams nearly made a spectacular 25-yard grab on 3rd-and-16 late in the fourth quarter but the ball was punched out as he went to the ground.
|WR Zay Jones, 22 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 27 - 0 (2 targets)|
Jones played 39% of the snaps in his Raiders debut. He caught a crossing route for 12 yards and a post route for 15 yards. He wasnít targeted in the second half.
|WR Trevor Davis, 26 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - -1 - 0, Rec: 1 - 15 - 0 (2 targets)|
Davis wasnít able to come up with a slightly overthrown deep ball down the right sideline. He made a 15-yard catch on 3rd-and-20. The Texans conceded the short pass and were easily able to make the tackle short of the sticks. After playing over 75% of the snaps while Tyrell Williams
was out, Davis played less than 50% of the snaps with Williams back in the lineup.
|TE Darren Waller, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 11 - 1 (8 targets)|
In recent weeks, the Raiders had waited too long to get Waller involved but they went to him early against the Texans. On the second play of the game, he was targeted deep down the left sideline but the ball was thrown too far to the inside and Waller was unable to make a play on it. He was unable to come up with any of his five targets in the first 20 minutes of the game. Waller caught an 8-yard touchdown on a play the Raiders have used regularly and to great success. He lined up inline to the right of the formation and then worked his way back across the formation behind the OL after the snap and then caught a short dump off and sprinted to get inside the pylon. When a linebacker is responsible for him, it is hard for the defender to work through traffic while also matching Wallerís elite speed and it allows Waller to get to open for easy completions. Waller had a 30-yard catch wiped out due to a very questionable offensive pass interference call on Hunter Renfrow
who ran a rub route. Gruden challenged the call but it wasnít overturned. Waller was only targeted one time in the second half. The linebacker undercut the route and should have intercepted it when Carr threw it too low. Carr was just slightly off all day when targeting Waller.
|TE Foster Moreau, 22 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 10 - 0 (2 targets)|
Moreau caught it short over the middle and then turned upfield and pushed a pair of defenders back for a 10-yard gain.
|QB Deshaun Watson, 83 offensive snaps, Pass: 27 - 39 - 279 - 3 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 10 - 46 - 0|
In grand Deshaun Watson
fashion, he remained the Texans' most important player on the field on Sunday. Throwing for 279 yards and three touchdowns, Watson continues to grow as a quarterback. The biggest change in his game is that he is more patient as a passer and not forcing the football into terrible situations. Willing to take throw underneath, he hit Darren Fells
for two touchdown passes, including a one-eye pass that resulted in him being kicked in the eye by a Raiders' defender. Watson spun out two potential sack attempts and his Fells for a nine-yard touchdown pass. Watson did not attempt many big throws downfield, but he was able to hit DeAndre Carter
for a 46-yard gain to set up the Texans for a field goal attempt. Watson also continues to rack up yards on the ground. He had 46 on the day.
|RB Carlos Hyde, 43 offensive snaps, Rush: 19 - 83 - 0 (1 targets)|
It always seems that Carlos Hyde
needs his customary fumble to get going, and it happened again against the Raiders. Hyde only had 25 yards rushing in the first half, but then after a fumble that he recovered on his own, he went to work. Hyde rushed for 58 yards in the second half, including a 20-yard rush after injuries to a key offensive lineman. Hyde carried the offense down into scoring territory for the game-winning touchdown. He continues to be the Texans be running back between the tackles.
|RB Duke Johnson, 37 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 1 - 0, Rec: 4 - 33 - 1 (5 targets)|
The touches keep coming for Duke Johnson
, and he started the scoring off for the Texans when he caught a 12-yard touchdown pass from Watson beating a linebacker out of the backfield inside the red zone. Johnson had a similar play earlier in the year that Watson missed him on but was able to hit him at this time. Johnson also rushed the ball for 46 yards with his longest run being 12 yards, and he also had 33 yards in the passing game. Johnson is being used much more as the season goes on, and part of it is that O'Brien is becoming comfortable with Johnson's skill set.
The Texans remain faithful to DeAndre Hopkins
, and the past two weeks, the offense has run through their best offensive player. Hopkins did not get into the end zone, but he was able to rack up eleven receptions. He did most of his damage in the middle of the field, getting nearly 10-yards a clip every time he touched the football. His best reception came on a 21-yard catch and throw between him and Watson. Hopkins is starting to get warmed up, and that is a good sign for the star wide receiver.
|TE Darren Fells, 75 offensive snaps, Rec: 6 - 58 - 2 (6 targets)|
The red zone favorite target of Deshaun Watson
remains to be Darren Fells
. This time Watson hit Fells for two touchdowns, one on a well run RPO that saw Fells wide open in the back of the end zone. The other was on a 9-yard touchdown pass that saw Watson pull out his one-eyed touchdown throw with Fells reaching over a Raiders' linebacker for the game-winning score. What should not be overlooked is the fact Fells is on the field more than second tight-end option Jordan Akins
. Fells caught the game ending reception to give the Texans the first down to run out the remainder of the clock.