History suggests Dennis Allen might want to have his Raiders team ready to play coming off a short week and traveling across the country to face the Miami Dolphins today.
Face-plants against Miami in each of the last two seasons helped seal the fates of two previous Oakland coaches, Tom Cable and Hue Jackson.
Allen’s job security is fine, given he works for Reggie McKenzie and not Al Davis and that he is a rookie coach in his first road game and has a four-year contract.
But going out and performing well against the Dolphins would go a long way toward making Raiders players think they’re on the verge of something, considering their recent history against Miami.
A case in point was last season when the Raiders visited the Dolphins with a 7-4 record after a win over the Chicago Bears and the lofty status of being in first place in the AFC West.
By the time the fourth quarter started, the Raiders were behind 34-0 to a Miami team that entered the game with a 3-8 record, and two late touchdowns for a 34-14 final margin did little to alter the perception that the franchise was not yet ready to put itself back in the limelight.
Oakland won only one game the rest of the season, finished 8-8 and was out of the playoffs, and Jackson was shown the door by owner Mark Davis and McKenzie in favor of Allen.
In 2010, the Raiders were 5-5 when Cable decided to re-insert quarterback Bruce Gradkowski into the starting lineup ahead of Jason Campbell. What followed was a 33-17 beatdown.
Fast-forward to this year and both clubs are coming off disappointing season-opening losses and in need of a pick-me-up.
Ryan Tannehill will get a second chance to make a favorable first impression for the Dolphins. Tannehill, the No. 8 overall pick in this year’s draft, had a forgettable pro debut in a loss to the Houston Texans and can allay the concerns of Miami fans with a better performance against Oakland.
The Dolphins failed to score an offensive touchdown against Houston, and the Raiders were on their way to matching them before getting in the end zone with 54 seconds to play in a 22-13 home loss to San Diego.
NOTES: Miami has won 12 of the past 15 meetings with Oakland. … Raiders wideout Denarius Moore is expected to play after missing the opener, which should boost the vertical passing game. … The Dolphins limited the Raiders to just 46 rushing yards last year, a game in which running back Darren McFadden did not play.