In the aftermath of the Chiefs’ surprising 24-20 loss to the previously-winless Oakland Raiders on Thursday, cornerback Ron Parker had come to grips with the kind of night it was.
But that doesn’t mean he was happy about it.
Parker, who was targeted 10 times and allowed seven completions for 99 yards, was frustrated about being whistled for pass interference on a crucial third down late in the game, which prolonged Oakland’s game-winning touchdown drive.
“I really didn’t feel like it was pass interference,” Parker said. “I felt like me and the receiver were trying to fight for the ball. I was trying to come back to the ball and the receiver had me locked out. We were both fighting for the ball, but the ref saw it another way. So he called PI.”
Parker said he and his teammates knew that the officiating crew, led by referee John Parry, liked to call penalties.
“This week, we knew coming into the game that this crew called a lot of interferences, illegal touching and all that,” Parker said. “So we got the heads up early in the week, before we came to the game ... so just be careful. But it didn’t work in our favor.”
Parker, however, also accepted responsibility for allowing the game-winning touchdown pass to receiver James Jones, in which he was lined up far off the ball and had to cover Jones over the middle.
“Double move, I got beat, that’s it,” Parker said. “Just got to do a better job staying in coverage.”
It was the second straight game that Parker was targeted heavily. Against Seattle, he allowed eight catches on eight targets for 75 yards.
Chiefs coach Andy Reid said Parker showed plenty of fight Thursday, however.
“He had some good plays and then he had some ones that weren’t so good, but he kept battling and he tightened it up in that fourth quarter, later third quarter,” Reid said. “He’ll just keep getting better. He’ll keep working.”
The Chiefs’ defense has plenty to work on, as a whole. The Chiefs held quarterback Derek Carr to 18 of 35 passing for 174 yards and one touchdown, which isn’t bad, but allowed 179 rushing yards on 30 carries. They were also able to sack Carr just once.
Cooper still waits
Thursday’s game marked the sixth straight game that cornerback Marcus Cooper failed to work into the mix in a significant way.
Cooper, who opened the season as a starter, lost his job against San Diego on Oct. 19 but hasn’t been able to earn it back.
“He’s practicing hard, and we’ll just see how things work out,” Reid said. “You’ve got to stay on your ready at all times.”
Reid was asked if Phillip Gaines and Jamell Fleming, who have earned most of the snaps in his absence, simply beat him out for the job.
“They got in and did a good job,” Reid said. “That’s what happened.”