Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that former Buckeyes quarterback Terrelle Pryor has been named the Week 1 starter for the Oakland Raiders (link). Pryor had been in contention with offseason acquisition Matt Flynn for the job, with 2013 draft pick Matt McGloin also making some noise this preseason.
Pryor’s performance in the third preseason game against the Bears was probably what ultimately landed him the job. Pryor had a touchdown through the air and on the ground, showcasing his dual-threat capabilities Flynn went on to throw two interceptions on his first six attempts. Pryor went on to see reps with the first team in practice last week before getting the start in the final preseason game against the Seahawks, staying on the field when the second-team came on so he could receive further evaluation.
This won’t be Pryor’s first ever start in the NFL, but, if he sticks, it will be the first time he’s been “the guy” at the NFL level. Pryor did make one start and four total appearances in 2012, completing 14 of 30 (46.7-percent) passing attempts for 155 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. Pryor also ran for 51 yards and one touchdown on 10 rushing attempts and made one 22-yard catch as a receiver.
With Darren McFadden, Marcel Reese, Denarius Moore, Rod Streater and Jacoby Ford, Pryor will have some pieces to work with. But with a shaky offensive line, McFadden’s injury history, Moore and Ford’s lack of consistency and Streater’s lack of experience, there are a lot of question marks. Pryor himself has little experience at the pro level as well, which makes the entire situation hit or miss.
But one thing is for sure, and that is that the Raiders have speed. Buckeye fans know what Pryor is capable of when he scrambles out of the pocket or takes off on an option play, but Ford, Moore, Streater and McFadden all have wheels as well. With such a shaky offensive line, the Raiders will (hopefully) implement the read-option to keep the defense on their heels and Pryor off his back.