Sunday, December 04, 2022

Chargers Gameday Thread

Momentum? Yes! We actually have a little for once, so keep it going. One thing is for sure, the Raiders ALWAYS make it interesting. GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, November 27, 2022

Seahawks Gameday Thread

A little late on the draw here, it's 7-7 early on, playing for some semblance of momentum today, GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, November 20, 2022

Broncos Gameday Thread

What's left to be said? Playing for dignity at this point. We'll see if McDaniels is still doing "a fantastic job." GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, November 13, 2022

Colts Gameday Thread

Playing for pride, down 0-7 in the first, work to be done. GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, November 06, 2022

Jaguars Gameday Thread

I was gonna say it's now or never, but then I realized it's already too late for that. Play for pride. GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, October 30, 2022

Saints Gameday Thread

Is it possible to say that the Raiders have momentum at 2-4? I believe so. They've won two out of three, and lost the other by one point to the Chiefs. If they win today, we should be feeling a lot better in the wake of a disastrous start to the season. Let's go RAIDERS!

Sunday, October 23, 2022

Texans Gameday Thread

Pretty soon, we're going to run out of "must win" games because it won't matter anymore. Thankfully, the AFC West is proving to be weaker than expected, so even at 1-4 there are glimmers of hope of turning things around and clinging to a Wild Card dream. Needless to say, today is a MUST WIN! Or should I say, JUST WIN, baby!

Monday, October 10, 2022

One Postgame Take

Going for two with more than four minutes left rather than tying it up. Leaving Kelce COMPLETELY UNGUARDED after he's already burned you for three touchdowns. Wide receivers running into each other on the last play. And now Davante Adams is going to get suspended for shoving a cameraman to the ground afterward.

McDaniels is getting perilously close to Nathaniel Hackett territory. The wheels are coming OFF right now. On the one hand, this was a great game: competitive, close, hard fought. But on the other hand, it was a winnable game that came down to a loss of composure that has now spilled over into the postgame with Davante Adams. 

A great game but a terrible loss. This could get real ugly real soon. 

Chiefs Gamenight Thread

Well, it's time for the Raiders to shock the world and win a must-win game that no one expects them to. It's time to change the narrative. GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, October 02, 2022

Broncos Gameday Thread

Well, four weeks into the season and we already have an absolute must-win game, which tells you everything you need to know about how the first three weeks went. GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Titans Gameday Thread

Time to park the Clown Car and get back on track. Brace yourself for the Derrick Henry show. This is such a pivotal game and the Raiders can't afford to get run over. EVERYBODY needs to step up their game today. GO RAIDERS!

Monday, September 19, 2022

One Postgame Take

That was an epic choke for the ages, fire up the Clown Car. 

There's been a lot of disagreement in the comments lately, but this is something we can all agree upon: that was a massive fail that lands squarely on the shoulders of the coaching staff. The players and the refs aren't entirely off the hook, either.

Go back and review the drive charts for the last nine minutes of the game. It's a horror show. Every time we needed just ONE more play to shut this circus down, we couldn't do it. Again and again the Raiders let Murray yank rabbits out of hats while seemingly refusing to help themselves on offense, right down to the last possession that ended with fumble (recovered), near INT, fumble, game over. 

Davante Adams: two catches, 21 yards over 60+ minutes. WTF?

This is the kind of game that can change trajectories and careers if things aren't shored up fast. That may be overstating it, but if the Raiders don't bounce back soon, we're going to look at this game as a pivot point for a lost season and a rough start for the McDaniels era. Let's hope it doesn't come to that, but anything is possible after yesterday.

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Cardinals Gameday Thread

 Late start to the thread here, and great start for the Raiders. Davante Adams is money. GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, September 11, 2022

Chargers Gameday Thread

Alright, it's time to move on and look AHEAD to the 2022 season.

Much to be excited about. New regime, new superstar receiver, great core of returning skill players, and a defense that needs to hold the line. Give Derek Carr time to throw and let's see what happens. 

It's a gauntlet of games to start the season, starting off 1-0 today would be more significant than a simple notch in the win column amid a 17-game season. Unfortunately, the reverse is also true.

Can't afford to drop a lot of intra-division contests this year. Taking one on the road to start off the McDaniels era would feel kinda epic. Losing wouldn't be the end of the world, but it would be a bit of a gut punch. 

The way the schedule is set up, and considering how tough the AFC West has become, this season feels sort of like a sprint AND a marathon. 

All we can say right now is GO RAIDERS!

Sunday, September 04, 2022

2022 Week 1: Anticipation and Excitement

Let's get this out of the way first...

Debate is raging in the comments about the Gruden #2 Era, and what it means to the present and future of the Las Vegas Raiders. 

My perspective is echoed by a few things I read in a piece in The Athletic this week. First off, from beat reporter Vic Tafur responding in a Q&A:

Q: Observing McDaniels’ coaching philosophy through training camp, how does he differ from the past few coaches the Raiders had? Is there anything special that makes him stand out from previous regimes?

A: There’s not the emotional roller coaster there was with Jon Gruden, with opinions on players speeding up and down from day to day. There has clearly been a focus on fundamentals, details and penalty-avoiding technique, and it worked in the preseason. Players say the offense is more complicated and has defined roles in the red zone. McDaniels admittedly had problems with his people skills during his first go-around as head coach in Denver, and it will be interesting to see what happens the first time the team faces adversity. But everything has been smooth sailing so far.

I like the sound of that. Of course, anything "new" is always the shiny toy before it has been tested. I do believe that Gruden was probably more seat of the pants and emotional in his approach, but there are more than one ways to skin a cat and cultivate winning football. I just like the sound of trying to skin it differently under McDaniels. 

We shall see how it plays out. Every new head coach is a winner before games are played, especially when there's stark contrast with the previous coaching regime. Look at the takes coming out of Minnesota and Miami, for example: 180-degree turns in coaching approaches, with everyone slobbering about how the previous way sucked and the new guys are going to hit it out of the park. Nevetheless, I'm getting the "feels" from McDaniels and Ziegler, and I hope I'm right.

A reader added this in the comments section of the aforementioned Athletic article, and it also sounds about right to me:

We had some colossal hits in Gru 2.0 (Waller, Crosby, Renfrow, Hobbs) and many colossal failures (Arnette, Ferrell, Leatherwood, AB, Littleton, etc). His personnel decisions had FAR too much standard deviation to ever put together a full-ish team. Overall, I'd say he ended at slightly below average. I anticipate this regime to be a bit more calculated and less variable in their decisions. But this quick reload shows that the team was not as bad as much as Gruden gets ragged on for.

Moving on from the review mirror, let's look through the windshield.

Chargers, Cardinals, Titans, Broncos, Chiefs is real gauntlet to start the season. We could find ourselves grasping for patience over panic by Week 6 with a few bad bounces. Or the Raiders could explode out of the gates. Will the new-look offense led by Carr and Adams gel immediately, or will there be growing pains, especially with our offensive line woes?

The division is just brutal. You could finish last in the AFC West and potentially still be the fifth or sixth best team in the conference. But there are question marks hovering over our rivals. Are the Chargers finally for real, or just perennial playoff teases? Is Russell Wilson going to change Denver's fortunes overnight? With the loss of Hill and a host of new skill players, can the Chiefs still set pace? The answers to those questions will play a major role in the Raiders' divisional fate this year.

Most of all, I'm just excited about the return of Raiders football for another season, and to be in good company with all of you, firing off your takes, sometimes veering into heated debate but always willing to cool down and ultimately give love and respect and ultimately not take it too personally. 

We all agree on this: GO RAIDERS!

Saturday, August 27, 2022

Back in Black

Yep, I'm still here, just off to a late start this season. Let's get right to it...

Bottom line: this feels to me like the most professional Raiders team in I don't know how long. 

There's been so much weirdness at head coach and general manager (and ownership) since I started this blog, that it's almost disorienting to not see any outright dysfunction. 

I didn't like how the whole Gruden thing went down at the end, but it provided us with a most unexpected and unlikely mulligan. Instead of being yoked to Gruden's ridiculous contract and mediocre performance for the next six years, the Raiders got a do-over, and I think they got it right. 

We have a coach-GM tandem that makes sense. Things seem way more grown up, operationally speaking. Moving on from Bisaccia as the sentimental Raider favorite was a good sign. The old Raiders probably would have brought him back. Great guy, awesome stopgap, but not the one. The rest of the NFL knows that, look at his current position.

Will it translate? We'll see. It's a tough division, and McDaniels is still unproven. But there's a freshness to the Autumn Wind right now, and I'm loving it.

What say you?  

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Draft Night Thread

Well, the bad news is that we don't have a first round pick. The good news is that we won't blow a first round pick on an obvious overreach.

There's some buzz lacking from this year's draft, but it'll still be entertaining. Keep an eye on our AFC West foes, as the Chargers are right in the middle, and the Chiefs have two late first rounders.

Bang it here for your draft night takes.

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Davante Adams!

Wait, what? Instead of perennially wasting top round draft picks on known reaches, we are cashing in a couple of top round picks on an elite proven quantity? What in tarnation is going on here?

Already, the mature, sober hiring process of a forward-thinking coach-GM tandem suggested that things are changing for the better in Raiderland. Now this. Bravo!

 Look, winning this division ain't gonna be easy with likely the fourth best QB (until proven otherwise) of them all. 

But this is a bold and necessary step that shows the Raiders have a plan and are in it to win it. 

No more reaching into the past for coaching hires, with bizarre power structures (Gruden - Reggie, Gruden - Mayock), unloading top players to stockpile picks only to blow the picks spectacularly. 

Nope. Not this time.

Now, I'm not ready to call the McDaniel's era a success before it's even rolling. But at least it all points in a different direction that feels sensible and visionary. 

And for that reason, I'm stoked. How about you?