Josh McDaniels and the Raiders are off to a rough start in the 2022 NFL season.
Las Vegas blew a 20-point halftime lead to the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday and are now 0-2 on the campaign. Kyler Murray gave a heroic performance to get the game into overtime, and a Byron Murphy fumble recovery for a touchdown sent Raiders fans at Allegiant Stadium home unsatisfied with their team.
The AFC West was projected to be the league’s toughest, and an 0-2 start is not an ideal one, especially with the high expectations Las Vegas came into the season with.
“It is two games, but every game is important,” McDaniels told reporters, per team video. “We have a lot of things we’re going to be able to learn from. We gotta start learning and winning at the same time, that’s important for us. We’ll be able to learn something from this as well.”
On Las Vegas’ response to the Cardinals’ second-half adjustments, McDaniels added: “They did a few things in the second half. I’d say most teams would do that if they’re trailing like that. They did a few things in the second half. At the end of the day, you have to learn how to handle success, like we had in the first half and/or failure if you’re on the other end of the spectrum, if you’re behind, and that starts with me. I gotta do a better job of getting our team able to handle a lead just as much as we were able to fight back last week from a deficit. We’re learning, and we got to learn quick. We gotta, like I said, produce victories along the way.”
The Cardinals were the second team Sunday to comeback from a deficit of 20 points or more, joining the Miami Dolphins, who came back to beat the Baltimore Ravens after being down by 21 points heading into the fourth quarter. It’s the first time multiple teams have achieved that feat on the same day, according to Elias Sports.
Carr was efficient in the first half with 210 passing yards on 18-of-24 throws and two touchdowns. But it was a different story in the second half. Carr was 7-of-15 for 42 yards in the second half and overtime period, and Davante Adams did not catch a pass off three targets in the second half. The wide receiver finished the day with two receptions for 12 yards and a touchdown.
“I agree with coach, we have to learn how to win,” Carr told reporters after the game, per team video. “It starts with me, and it always will. I think for the execution we had in the first half, we did not execute each play with the detail we did in the first half. One thing here, one thing there and it looks like a bad play, and we’re this close from another good half. There’s a couple times looking for someone down field or this or that, one thing messes up, and that’s a bad play. It goes back to what coach says, do our job. No matter what the score is, if we do our job, at the end it will take care of itself. I’m sure when we watch film, over and over again, that will be a theme.”
A blown lead and strange trick plays have defined McDaniels’ opening tenure as Raiders head coach. The former New England Patriots offensive coordinator is now 11-19 in his head coaching career. Las Vegas will travel to Tennessee to take on the Titans in Week 3.