The Raiders played to win

Las Vegas tied their ticket to the postseason with a field goal on the final play of overtime against the Chargers.

I don’t remember a game like this Sunday night in Las Vegas. The Raiders Y Los Angeles Chargers they were woven into an unforgettable duel that required until the last minute of overtime to define a winner. Anyone who has seen this match will be convinced that both teams gave their all to achieve their goal.

What made this game unique was that the tie qualified the two for the playoffs and left the Steelers out. When everything seemed headed for them to finish equaled at 29, the coach of the Chargers Brandon Staley asked for a time out, the Raiders Instead of kneeling to finish the remaining time they went for the first and ten on the third chance and they did it. Then Daniel Carlson kicked the winning field goal for Las Vegas.

What did Coach Staley try with that last time out? Honestly, it is not very clear to me, there was very little time left to think that they would have any chance to win. After that difficult to understand decision, the Raiders aborted the draw plan and went for the victory that sent the Chargers to home.

Coach Staley made another very serious mistake in the third quarter, when he decided to play it in fourth and one for advancing within his own 20-yard line. Incredible! The Raiders They stopped them and got three points that in the end would have made the difference in favor of the Chargers.

Staley, a 39-year-old rookie head coach, abuses the resource of mathematical probabilities to take such risks. Under no circumstances was it a smart decision: they were in 17th on their field, it was very early in the game (8:52 left in the third quarter), they were only down 14-17 on the scoreboard, and something very important, their offensive line I was not dominating the front of the Raiders (Max Crosby and Darius Philon were unstoppable). Staley has a lot to learn.

A shame that the Chargers have been left out with this quota of talent, but this Sunday’s game ends up being a small sample of their contrasting campaign: great shoots of players like Justin Herbert, Austin Ekeler, Mike Williams, Derwin James and company, but at the same time dense and erratic moments as in the first and third quarters, accompanied by inexplicable decisions of his coach.

The Raiders they become the first team to earn a playoff berth with an interim head coach. Rick Bisacchia has given a great show of leadership to heal a team that seemed broken by so many external problems, which began with the forced resignation of Jon Gruden.

The legendary Al Davis’ mantra over the years was: “Just win baby“That’s what the Raiders, they played to win. Derek Carr eventually admitted that the time Staley asked made them rethink their goals. They played to win and they have a fair prize. Have no doubt, that will always be the best bet.