Raiders RB Jacobs injures knee against Vikings
LAS VEGAS (AP) — One touchdown would have been enough for the Raiders. Or two field goals. Even one field goal would have forced overtime.
But Las Vegas couldn't even manage that much offense in a 3-0 loss to the visiting Minnesota Vikings on Sunday, an ignominious result that led to interim coach Antonio Pierce pledging to evaluate everyone in the organization.
“The whole football program, our whole program — everybody,” Pierce said. “Got to win. It ain’t good enough. So, got to win.”
Any evaluation must come quickly. The Raiders (5-8) have lost three straight and host the Los Angeles Chargers on Thursday night.
Las Vegas' defense was stout against the Vikings, but the Raiders finished with 202 yards or fewer and no points for the 15th time in franchise history. It was the lowest-scoring NFL game in 16 years and just the third in the past 40 years to end 3-0.
The Raiders had their best scoring opportunity on their first possession of the third quarter. After driving to the Vikings 10-yard line in five plays, a holding penalty pushed Las Vegas back 10 yards, and on the next play, receiver Hunter Renfrow lost a fumble.
Rookie Aidan O’Connell finished 21 of 32 for 171 yards and threw a late interception after the Vikings took the lead.
“We were moving the ball,” Pierce said. “There was opportunities — penalties, turnovers — for us to put points on the board, and that just wasn’t the quarterback. It’s easy to point the finger at the quarterback, and obviously, we’ll look at that as we go forward.”
O'Connell's backup is veteran Jimmy Garoppolo, who began the season as the Raiders' starter but hasn't played since Oct. 30.
“I have confidence in myself to execute and to do my job properly. I haven’t done it good enough, and so I got to be better at doing that. But I still have full confidence in myself to do this,” O'Connell said. “I’m learning every week, what it takes and working extremely hard to try to put a good product on the field. I’m not doing it right now. So I got to do better.”
Another issue for the Raiders as they start a short week of preparation: Star running back Josh Jacobs is hurt.
Jacobs went into the locker room after suffering a knee injury in the fourth quarter. He did not return.
Jacobs, who led the NFL in rushing last season with 1,653 yards, had rushed for more than 100 yards in two of his previous three games.
Pierce said Jacobs was “nicked up early on” and wasn’t himself the rest of the day.
As for the offense as a whole?
“No excuse there,” Pierce said. “It is shocking, plenty of time to prepare for an opponent, knew what they did, nothing new. Just again, poor coaching, poor performance by the players, starts with myself.
“But as a team, like I tell them: ‘We win together, we lose together.’ It wasn’t a good performance by us overall.”
AP Sports Writer Mark Anderson contributed to this report.
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