Oakland Raiders QB Terrelle Pryor Is Working Hard but Needs to Show Improvement

The Oakland Raiders will have a new man under center for 2013 after dealing Carson Palmer to the Arizona Cardinals. As the team completed the organized team activities, Matt Flynn is firmly entrenched as the starter. That leaves Terrelle Pryor on the outside, but working to improve.

“Yeah, that’ll come with some in-game experience,” head coach Dennis Allen said of Pryor’s growth this week. “We watch every single practice snap so I think we have a pretty good idea of where we’re at. We’re going to continue to give him opportunities to showcase his skills, but right now, he’s not there yet.”

Pryor was taken in the 2011 Supplemental Draft and has been buried on the depth chart which has limited his reps in practice. Last season the Raiders vowed to give him a chance to get on the field in certain offense packages, but failed to deliver any significant playing time until the last game of the season. Pryor showed his potential and deficiencies in his first career start in the season finale.

In Oakland’s season ending 24-21 loss to the San Diego Chargers, Pryor completed 13 of 28 passes for 150 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. He also rushed nine times for 49 yards and another score. That performance was enough for the Raiders coaching staff and management to give Pryor a chance to compete this season. Even if he is not named the starter, there is a spot for him to make a contribution.

The NFL is ever evolving offensively and Pryor has a tremendous athletic skill set for a quarterback. He stands 6-4 and weighs 233 pounds with wide receiver speed. He may not be an every down quarterback, but the Raiders need to find a way to get him on the field. Offensive coordinator Greg Olson will be tasked with providing a package for Pryor that utilizes his ability. They were unable to implement that facet in the offense last season.

“Hey listen, he’s working,” Allen said. “There’s been no lack of effort on his part. I think still, when you look at it at the quarterback position, he’s still young in the position. There’s still a lot of improvement that he needs to make. He’s got a great athletic skill set, but still some of the finer points of playing the quarterback position are still some of the things that he’s got to continue to get better at.”

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