Terrelle Pryor is going to get one last chance this season to show the Raiders he can be their quarterback of the future. Dennis Allen today named Pryor the starter for Sunday’s regular season finale at home against the Broncos.
“We want to be able to evaluate Terrelle, so here’s an opportunity to go in and do that,” Allen said. “Listen, when Terrelle’s played, he’s gone in and done a good job. So we anticipate he’ll go in and play well.”
Pryor of course began the season as the Raiders quarterback and was actually doing a fairly decent job of it for the first month of the season. Dare I say there was hope beginning to sprout up in Oakland regarding the Raiders (weird, I know). Then he went on a brutal four-game stinkfest of a stretch that concluded with him throwing eight consecutive interceptions, and suddenly he looked like the type of quarterback Raiders fans are used to.
A knee sprain in his most recent start conveniently paved the way for Matt McGloin to complete his meteoric rise from undrafted free agent to NFL starting quarterback in less than seven months. McGloin prompted the “Pryor who?” talk almost immediately with three TD’s and a road win against the Texans in his first start. McGloin played OK, all things considered, in his brief tenure as the Raiders starter, but the team went 1-5 during that time. Allen said today that the switch at QB has nothing to do with McGloin’s performance.
“I’ve been pleased with what I’ve seen out of Matt McGloin from, really, the first moment he walked on campus here,” Allen said. “We have a guy that can be in our plans for the future, and I’m glad he’s on this football team.”
Meantime, Pryor still saw the field occasionally even after McGloin took over the huddle. Pryor was sprinkled in as a change of pace quarterback at times to what we outside observers assumed was an attempt at throwing off opposing defenses, though Pryor’s packages were rarely effective and were utilized at random and perplexing times by Allen’s staff.
But if Pryor can return to the passing form from his first four games as the starter, that can give him some momentum heading into the offseason and camp next year. Here’s a breakdown of his stats this year:
First four starts:
68 percent completions, 845 yards passing, 4 TD, 2 INT, 97.6 QB rating, 229 yards rushing (6.19 yards/rush)
Last four starts:
50.8 percent completions, 714 yards passing, 1 TD, 8 INT, 44.2 QB rating, 275 yards rushing (8.87 yards/rush), 2 rushing TD
So Sunday might be the last impression Pryor has to make if he wants to be a QB in this league, if not with the Raiders. Not sure how much that matters anyway with Dennis Allen as a potential dead man walking in Oakland.