Last season it was a fact of life that the Niners had a great defense and the Raiders had an atrocious one.
The Niners ranked fourth in yards allowed and second in points allowed. Exemplary. The Raiders ranked 29th in yards allowed and 29th in points allowed. Putrid.
But there was one key stat in which they were similar – opponents’ passer rating.
The Niners graded out towards the top of the league – No. 5. They held opposing QBs to a 73.6 rating.
But here’s what surprised me when I looked it up: The Raiders ranked 11th. They held opposing QBs to a 81.3 rating. That’s pretty good.
Now that they’ve replaced Stanford “The Human Pass Interference Penalty” Routt with Ronald Bartell, they should be even better against the pass. And if new coach Dennis Allen can eliminate half the penalties and get his defense to stop the run, the Raiders could have a good defense this season.
One more thing: The Seahawks ranked 6th, holding opposing QBs to a 74.7 rating. They accomplished this while getting below-average pressure on the QB – just 33 sacks all season. Their defense is young and they just added a sub-package defensive end – Bruce Irvin – whom Pete Carrols hopes will be his Aldon Smith. They could be an elite defense this season.
I put this out for your information. I find it kind of interesting. I hope you do, too.