The Oakland Raiders are making a few changes in the preseason finale Thursday against the Seattle Seahawks. The team will start Terrelle Pryor at quarterback and rookie Menelik Watson will get the nod at left tackle. Quarterback Matt Flynn will not play in the game as he rests soreness in his arm.
“I did think Terrelle Pryor played well in the game the other day,” Raiders head coach Dennis Allen said. “We’ll get a chance to see Terrelle this week with the first-unit offense up against Seattle, and we’ll see how he does.”
Flynn has had some tendonitis issues over last season which have continued into this year. Allen will rest him more as a precautionary measure and does not anticipate it becoming a big issue. As for Pryor, he gets the chance to build on a very good performance in the third preseason game against the Chicago Bears where he completed 7-9 passes for 93 yards and a touchdowns as well as rushing four times for 37 yards and a score. He led the Raiders to 20 points in four drives. With another standout performance, Pryor could take the lead in the quarterback competition and start week one of the regular season against Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts.
“Every day I’m getting one percent better and I won’t stop until I get to my goal,” Pryor said. “That’s my goal is to be a starting quarterback and to lead a team to wins, wins, and wins. I won’t stop until it happens. To answer your question, every day we’ll see what happens and keeps on happening. I’ll keep on pushing.”
To protect Pryor's blind side the Raiders will turn to rookie second round draft pick Menelik Watson. Watson has never played the left side in his life. In junior college and at Florida State, he played right tackle exclusively. He possesses traits that translate to the left tackle position such as footwork, athleticism, and power. However, he will have to show it in a game situation to be considered a real contender to take over until injured starter Jared Veldheer can get healthy.
“Right now, just working my technique and listening to anything Coach Sparano is telling me,” Watson said after practice. “Right now, I have to go watch film. I think it was a pretty successful day there considering it was my first ever time playing. But I have to look at the corrections and fix the mistakes for tomorrow.”
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