The dominating defense promised by Raiders coach Hue Jackson is running out of time to get its act together.
The New Orleans Saints moved at will Sunday night at O.co Coliseum, beating the Raiders 40-20 before an announced crowd of 34,322 that realizes only one exhibition game remains before Oakland's season opener Sept. 12.
The Raiders visit the Seattle Seahawks on Friday in the preseason finale, a game that usually means only cameo appearances from players expected to be starters.
Whatever adjustments the Raiders make between now and Sept. 12, they'll take place behind closed doors in Alameda when the club resumes practice Tuesday.
New Orleans racked up 514 yards of total offense, including 388 yards passing, and 29 first downs, overshadowing an encouraging Raiders offensive effort that included an exciting debut by rookie running back Taiwan Jones.
Most troublesome was the way the Raiders' first-team defense was taken apart by New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees. On the field for three possessions, Brees and the Saints produced 223 yards of offense, 13 first downs and 17 points.
"I know everybody doesn't see what I do, and I respect that, but I know what's in that locker room, I know what these guys are capable of doing, and I'm going to get these guys to play football," Jackson said.
The aerial assault came one week after the Raiders gave up 239 yards rushing to San Francisco.
Brees completed 15 of 23 passes for 189 yards in drives that resulted in a pair of 1-yard touchdown runs by Mark Ingram and Pierre Thomas and a 33-yard field goal by Garrett Hartley before the quarterback took the rest of the night off.
Seldom has passing the ball looked so easy, as if Brees were facing a defense playing with eight men.
"Great quarterback. Easily one of the best quarterbacks in the league," Raiders cornerback Stanford Routt said. "But we've got one of the best defenses in the league. We've got to stop it. Plain and simple."
Keep in mind that the Raiders' schedule this season includes quarterbacks at or near the Brees realm such as New England's Tom Brady, Houston's Matt Schaub, San Diego's Philip Rivers (twice) and Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers.
"The third preseason game is a dress rehearsal going into the regular season," Brees said. "You definitely want to leave feeling good about where you are. For the most part, I was pleased with what we were able to accomplish."
Strongside linebacker Kamerion Wimbley believes the Raiders were closer to making some plays than it appeared.
"I believe the coverage was good. We were in good position, we just weren't able to finish and make plays to get us off the field. And they were converting a lot of third downs to keep their offense alive," Wimbley said.
Brees immediately picked on rookie cornerback DeMarcus Van Dyke, starting after missing three days of practice with an undisclosed injury. Van Dyke was victimized four times on an opening 80-yard drive, including a 37-yard completion on the first play to Devery Henderson. All were for first downs.
Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell was 12 of 17 for 150 yards, a game marred only by a deflected interception in the end zone by safety Jonathan Amaya just before the half.
Wide receiver Derek Hagan caught six passes for 121 yards, highlighted by a 35-yard touchdown catch in which he spun around cornerback Tracy Porter and ran in for the score.
Campbell's protection was good, and Jones rushed for 81 yards in 13 carries with a 22-yard touchdown run that tied the score 17-17 in the third quarter.
New Orleans' reserves had similar success against the Raiders' backup defenders. Quarterback Chase Daniel completed 9 of 18 passes for 191 yards and two touchdowns.