For now, the sting of being completely overwhelmed by a hated division rival is going to remain in place. There’s no way around the suffocation of losing by nearly 40 points, and fans of the Raiders are just going to have to sit and soak in this one for a week. It was sad. It was abysmal. It was enough to make some fans likely want to stop watching entirely.
That said, the Raiders absolutely needed to be steamrolled by the Chiefs. In so doing, the Raiders now have no illusions about the ceiling of this team going forward. They are outclassed. They are outcoached. They are outmanned. And the Raiders need to make major adjustments if they want to keep up with the Chiefs or anyone else for that matter in 2022 and beyond.
The Las Vegas Raiders actually needed that sort of embarrassing loss to the Kansas City Chiefs to ensure hitting rock bottom in 2021.
Here’s the truth: the Raiders needed to hit rock bottom in order to avoid falling for any excuses. Even at this juncture, it would be very possible to make them. Remember, the Raiders are somehow still in the playoff hunt despite losing four of their last five games. It’s a long season and there’s a slim chance that the pieces could fall their way and Derek Carr could be playing in the postseason.
Even more, Raiders owner Mark Davis could provide cover for anyone and everyone after such a frustrating season. Not every year will feature the loss of two former first-round picks due to off-the-field issues or criminal behavior. Not every season will feature an expose of a head coach that forces him out. Not every season will feature this many injuries, this much illness, this much inconsistency.
If an owner were a bit of a pushover, it’s quite possible that someone inside could claim, “Look, Mr. Davis, we were in playoff contention up until the very end in a season in which the sky was falling from the word go.” That sort of line could lead someone to say, “Fine, let’s give this another year.” Instead, the Chiefs mopped the floor with the Raiders from the first play of the game. There was instant haves and have nots. No excuse could cover for what everyone clearly watched on Sunday.
With the embarrassment comes a clearer picture of the future. This is a coaching staff that is in over its head. This is a front office that makes too many errors in early draft slots. This is a player base devoid of talent. From top to bottom, the Raiders need a complete overhaul and that can only happen when eyes are wide open.
In the coming weeks, the Raiders will likely wave goodbye to RIch Bisaccia and perhaps even Mike Mayock; They’ll take a long look at the quarterbacks available and think about the most important positions overall in the draft. If Las Vegas fans are lucky, it will lead to the revitalization of one of the most storied franchises in football.
It might take some time but it’s the Raiders’ best move and it can only happen after a team completely falls apart.