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Lowell Cohn: Raiders' Terrelle Pryor takes blame, now must improve his game

  • Oakland Raiders quarterback Terrelle Pryor (2) avoids a sack by Kansas City Chiefs outside linebacker Justin Houston (50) late in their NFL football game in Kansas City, Mo., Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013. (AP Photo/Reed Hoffmann)

"To answer your question — this is a long answer — but it's something that needs to be said. I need to learn when to escape and when to throw it away instead of taking sacks. I've got to learn and I will. That was definitely my worst game."

Reader, take a deep breath before we move on. You get the picture. Pryor is a talker. More than a talker. He's a pourer, the words pouring out. And he's a confessor, lets you into the depth of his soul including insecurities. You pull for Pryor because he is so likable and he makes himself vulnerable.

Back to the scene. One reporter mentioned Pryor had a desperate time calling the plays on time.

Oakland Raiders vs. Kansas City Chiefs

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"I take the fault at that," he said. "I've got to get guys in the huddle. I wasn't getting the plays called until about 15 seconds at the line. At that stadium it's very loud. The ground was shaking. A lot of the things happened because we were rushing and that's on me.

"The last pick I threw — and they took it to the house — I was kind of like, 'I thought a flag was thrown.' I thought it was a pink flag but they were using yellow flags. I got it confused with the previous week (when they used pink flags). There was a (pink) towel on the ground. I said, 'I'm not going to chase.' I'm disappointed for that to be on the film."

Please, is there someone out there who can absolve Terrelle Pryor of his never-ending guilt?

You want guilt? Try this. "I deserved them hits," he said, "because I made bad plays. On one play I called the wrong protection. It was supposed to be on the other side. Stupid mistakes like that."

So, he deserved to get hit?

Earlier in the day, I had asked Allen if he's sticking with Pryor as his quarterback of the future. "Yeah, absolutely," Allen said. "I don't think he played as well as he would have liked or what we wanted him to, but he's still a young player. That was his fifth start this season. He's still got a lot of growing to do and a lot of getting better to do. But he's a talented player and we're going to continue to try to build with him and try to grow with him.

"Now, the key is, Does he learn from it, does he move forward from it? That's what we're looking for. When you get young players, especially at the quarterback position, you're going to have ups and downs. You've got to give him an opportunity to continue to grow."


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