The Raiders will start Terrelle Pryor at quarterback in their preseason finale on Thursday, a game that could wind up being the final step in Pryor winning the starting job for Week One over Matt Flynn.
Pryor’s ability to make plays with his feet has given him a leg up over Flynn, who has not played as well as Pryor in the preseason and is now dealing with the same elbow tendonitis that struck him last summer when Russell Wilson took the Seahawks’ starting job. Should Pryor wind up with the job, offensive coordinator Greg Olson admitted that the team will have to alter the offense as Pryor would be doing more than playing in specific packages of plays and because he still needs to develop as a passer.
But that development may have to come on the fly during the season. Olson also said that Pryor has done some things that the Raiders are “excited about” and suggested that those things could win him the job because he has skills that are in short supply elsewhere on the Oakland roster.
“When you see Terrelle in a game, he just looks faster than the other players on the field,” Olson said, via Scott Bair of CSNBayArea.com. “That’s what jumped out at me, and probably jumped out at most people when they watch him play. He can run. He is a tremendous athlete, and he’s got the ability to make plays. Right now we’re looking for playmakers.”
If Pryor does win the job, the Raiders will have to find a way to make the most out of the things that Pryor does well while also finding a way to improve the less-polished elements of his game. It’s not an easy balancing act to pull off during a season, but the potential rewards that Pryor offers may make it too tempting a task to resist.