The Raiders defense has a magic number entering every game. If the opponent hits or falls below the mark, the Raiders should win.

“Our goal is always 17 points,” cornerback TJ Carrie said. “If we hold them to or under, then we feel our offense can do enough to pull out a victory.”

That’s sound logic. It hasn’t produced results. The defense has held an opponent to 17 or less three times. The Raiders are 1-2.

The Raiders have also given up 24 or more in three straight games. They’re 2-1 in those.

At some point, the Raiders must start playing consistently complimentary football. They got some of it in Sunday’s 27-24 victory over Miami. They’re going to need a lot more should the Raiders go on the run required to legitimately get back in the playoff hunt.

The offense must find consistency down the stretch. The defense must improve to get point totals back down.

They’ll try and do so during this bye week and in work leading towards a Nov. 18 showdown with New England.

Del Rio believes his Raiders must do better at the basics.

“When we start (tackling better), and then getting off on third down more regularly, I think you take a big jump,” Del Rio said on Monday. “To me, what it comes down to is the tackling on the back end that has really been poor. You can’t play great defense without being great tacklers. That’s probably the biggest area for us.