The young quarterback sprained his MCL against the New York Giants on Sunday, in a 24-20 loss that dropped Oakland to 3-6. Head coach Dennis Allen acknowledged the knee, which was initially tweaked the week before versus the Pittsburgh Steelers, was a bigger deal than originally thought., per NFL.com.
"It wasn't something that we thought was going to be a big factor going into the game. But, obviously, it was a factor," Allen told reporters, per the Bay Area News Group.
Something even more alarming has been Pryor's play over the past month. The former Ohio State star has been a disaster in the last four games, throwing eight interceptions while finding the end zone once.
Overall, Pryor has thrown for 1,559 yards with a 58.9 completion percentage and only five touchdowns against 10 interceptions. He has also run for a team-leading 504 yards.
Let's take a quick look at how much Pryor's play has fallen off, per Pro Football Focus:
After having positive ratings in three of his first four appearance this season, things have taken a turn for the worst. The decline started in Kansas City, where he was sacked nine times and threw three interceptions in the second half.
In the last four games, Pryor has a passer rating of 42.0. That stretch is worse than any four-game run authored by JaMarcus Russell. Now, nobody is suggesting that Pryor is turning into Russell, but the better question is whether he is playing poorly because of injury or are teams catching up with him?
With seven games remaining in Oakland's season, Pryor will have time to prove himself as the franchise quarterback. If he fails, the Raiders are likely to have a top 10 pick and a chance to draft a player such as Teddy Bridgewater or Marcus Mariota.