Paul Guenther,” Gruden said. “There’s not a better friend that I have than Paul Guenther. We’re going to argue and jaw, probably tonight, deep into the night over a lot of things. I’ll see if we can (get) video footage for you.”
The offense is dealing with its own woes as rookie left tackle Kolton Miller has been in and out of the lineup with a knee injury, left guard Kelechi Osemele re-injured his knee after missing three games, backup left guard Jon Feliciano is dealing with a rib injury and rookie right tackle Brandon Parker has struggled since taking over for the injured Donald Penn.
The situation got so bad when Miller was forced to leave that Osemele had to move to left tackle after not practicing there all season.
Osemele and Miller are being evaluated and could miss time so the Raiders brought back former draft pick David Sharpe on Friday to take the place of tackle T.J. Clemmings, who is on injured reserve.
Oakland allowed eight sacks, and Gruden pulled Carr to protect his health.
“Last night, I was concerned,” he said. “Last night, we didn’t just have a couple of injuries, we were decimated and had guys playing positions that they had never really practiced. That was uncommon for any game I’ve ever called and I’ve called a lot of games. I’ve broadcast some games and I haven’t seen that.”
Even the rookie punter is struggling. Oakland used a fifth-round pick on Johnny Townsend, who has struggled all season. His 25-yard punt two weeks ago set up Indianapolis’ go-ahead score, and he had a 23-yarder against San Francisco.
Townsend is last in the NFL in gross punting average (41.9 yards) and has the second-lowest percentage of punts downed inside the 20 (18.8 percent).
“I think he’s overthinking some things a little bit,” Gruden said. “Directional punting, putting the ball between the numbers to the sideline to the right, to the left, getting it off quicker, whatever it may be. I make no excuses for Townsend, but I will say this, I have seen him bomb it. I have seen him be a difference maker, and I am confident it’s in our near future.”