The Ravens passing attack provides a solid matchup for the Raiders secondary, if the secondary is healthy.
Cornerback David Amerson suffered a concussion on Sunday and has been limited in practice this week. Rookie Gareon Conley has also been limited after missing last week’s game with a shin injury.
The possibility of missing two of the top cornerbacks on the team prompted the Raiders to workout four defensive backs earlier this week.
If Amerson and Conley miss this weekend’s matchup with the Ravens, the Raiders will be relying heavily on TJ Carrie and Sean Smith.
Carrie has been the best corner for the Raiders this season, but Sean Smith has struggled, as he was benched after three plays against Washington two weeks ago.
Raiders defensive coordinator Ken Norton was pleased with how Carrie and Smith performed against the deep ball from Denver.
“I think that early on, TJ [Carrie] and Sean [Smith], they did a great job of putting that fire out," Norton said. "Once you put that fire out, it forces the offense to work now. Now they have to work for every yard, every third down, every second down, every first down. It’s not going to be an easy, deep throw. Now they have to work down the field methodically. That’s where our strength is.”
After those two, Dexter McDonald and Antonio Hamilton are next in line for playing time at corner. McDonald played 31 snaps on defense against Denver. Hamilton only played on special teams.
But back to the Ravens struggles. Joe Flacco has thrown six interceptions this season. His interception percentage is the second highest in the NFL.
His 5.1 yards per attempt is the lowest in the NFL.
Flacco has not been good. He doesn’t present much a problem for any defense.
But the Raiders secondary, even when healthy hasn’t presented many problems for opponents.
The Raiders do not have an interception this season. They allow the seventh highest completion percentage and sixth highest yards per play.
The Raiders defense tends to look like this.
Two weaknesses collide on Sunday. The winner may come down to health if the Raiders can’t get Conley or Amerson on the field.
Tyler Bischoff hosts Coaches Corner on AM 720 KDWN Monday through Friday at 6:00 pm.