The Seahawks wrapped the NFL preseason with a unexciting 23-21 victory over the Oakland Raiders. Winning teams will always take unexciting if that’s what it takes to notch the W. But for fans watching at home, looking for reasons to stay tuned in, this game didn’t offer much for the first three quarters. Those still watching when the 4th quarter began saw a score that looked more like a mid-division Premier League contest than an NFL game: 5-3. Then the 4th quarter delivered 36 points, 20 of them by Seattle. The Raiders starters didn’t see much action, while the Seahawks first team saw limited minutes.
Preseason football is essential for getting teams prepared to do battle when the season starts, but putting it on national TV is a really good idea probably only for the reserve players’ friends and families. The Raiders didn’t get past midfield on offense in the first half. But the good news for Raiders fans is that rookie quarterback Connor Cook showed some good signs in the second half, going 15-of-30. (He threw a pick, but that’s what preseason games are for, something Cook alluded to.) The Michigan State alum said afterwards that he “wasn’t that happy with [his] performance. There were some good things, some bad things. But it’s a learning experience. It’s preseason. It’s my first season in the NFL.” What has he learned the most? “That it’s just a fast game, obviously much faster than college. Guys are smarter, guys are better at disguising defenses. I’ve got to get better at my post-snap reads.”