Tuesday, October 31, 2006

And Then Hell Froze Over

One of the major sports media outlets, Fox Sports, is actually giving the Raiders some love this week—while also referencing the wildly premature and inordinate media glee that has been dashed by recent events. They rank the Raiders at 25th in their Power Rankings (thanks to BlandaRocked for the tip), up from 32nd last week, and they don’t give all of the credit to the Cardinals and Big Ben’s headache. Here’s what they say:

“Hmm…After starting the season with five consecutive losses and a myriad of articles, TV segments, and wisecracks on the Internet about the possibility of being the league’s first winless team since the ’76 Bucs, the Raiders have ripped off two gutsy wins and are now suddenly one of the hottest teams in the NFL.”

Nicely put.


Blogger nyraider said...

RT: I particularly like this excerpt from the same team summary: "The Raiders... have the same record, and actually hold the tiebreaker, over last year’s Super Bowl champion Steelers." Okay, then why list the Raiders below the Steelers in power ratings?

It's amazing that media talks about how the Steelers might still make the playoffs, but the Raiders were written off before Game 1. To me, it looks like the Steelers and Raiders are in the same boat. In fact, within the scope of the season thus far, these teams have demonstrated the contrast of a team on the rise and a team on it's way down.

In defense of the Steelers, they're not the first team to come out flat after a superbowl...

4:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tired of the Steelers--if the draft were today, they'd draft ahead of us. If we start to play some O on the road, it'll be that way after week 17 also. On to Seattle to stuff some birds---honestly, I'm looking at this game and having a hard time figuring out how Seattle is going to score...without our help that is. Here's hoping for a solid week of practice and ball security on Sunday...

6:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who cares about power rankings? This ain't the BCS.

8:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Si.com's Dr. Z actually has us at 19, with some very nice words.


11:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't normally subscribe to the anti-raider media schtick but here's some BS I just don't understand: Merriman has been exposed as being on the juice but I have only read one really negative article about it (oddly a short piece by ex-Raider Eric Allen where he says Merriman's ACCOMPLISHMENTS are now tainted). How true, they are tainted. He is a cheater. But, 99% of the articles have just been about his supension and near appeal, with a bigger focus on his awards, "lights-out" style and impact on the game. What would they be saying if he was a Raider?
There is absolutely no focus on the fact that perhaps this guy is a big abuser of roids. Maybe we now know the catalyst for the "lights out" impact he has shown.
On to the Raiders: I'm not sure who is more to blame for our dismal offense, Walsh or Walter. I just don't see what y'all like in Walter. Just don't see it. Bad throws, int's, failure to audible, poor 4th qtr play... in short, everything you don't want in a QB. He's playing far worse than KFC and I hated that guy at the helm. Walter is surely the worst rated passer in the game. He completed 7 passes the other day? Seven passes? You gotta be kidding me! Gannon harped on it all through his broadcast: This guy is not checking into better plays. Walsh may suck, but surely, surely their are a few audibles in this ofensive scheme that allows for short, quick passing. Maybe Al's Gilman ball can only work with a truly cerebral QB. One that can confound the opponent by reading the defense and making adjustments. Walter has shown zero ability to do this so far. We can't count on 2 INT returns for TDs to beat the Hawks. We're going need to score a minimum 17 points up there (on offense) to win. Can Walter do that? He's had ample chances and just can't amke it happen. As desparate as it seems I'd like to see Tui get more than a quarter or a game to see what he can do. I don't think he is the answer but truly he has never received a legitimate shot. KFC got 20 something games, Walter has been given about 6.5 games and his QB rating is absolutely rotten. Heck, give Tui two games. Two lousy games. Can he have that?

8:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I agree with your points on Merriman. The guys a big time cheater and would be destroyed by media if he wore silver, & black.

It's no surprise though, given the a$$ kissing ESPN gave Baroid Bonds all season.
The fans are not stupid, however, and we know that Hammerin' Hank will remain the legit HR champ, with The Babe in 2nd place.
Also, since I don't buy into Mcguire, or Sosa either, Roger Maris is still the single season record holder for homers with a ligit 61.

Sorry to go off on a BB rant, but it makes me mad.

On Andrew Walter, I have to disagree with you. First, the kid, and he is just a kid, is playing in like, what, his 6th game or something. Geez, give him a chance already.
He also doesn't have much help around him right now.

I think we'll know more about Walter by the end of the season, but it's way to early, and unfair to judge him now.

9:54 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Bama7: I agree with Raider00, it takes more time to develop an NFL QB. Only an exceptional person can just step in from college and play in the NFL (e.g., see Smith last year and Leinart woes this year). To add insult to Walter's maturation process, he has not been given all the tools he needs to succeed, e.g., poor line play, bad route running, record-setting drop balls, and the obvious problems with play calling.

The result, Walter is at a huge disadvantage. The only way to gage this thing is to let the O-unit in place keep playing together and try to develop some chemistry. At the end of the season, Art & Al should know enough to make informed changes for coaches and players.

Regarding Tui, I agree he was never given a fair chance, but his skill set was only suited to Gruden's offense. He no longer fits. To play him now the way you suggest would be an insult to the entire Raider Nation.

5:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

big difference between Walter and KFC is Walter will stand in the pocket like a man. He's more poised and doesn't roll up in the fetal position at the first sign of pressure. I think he'll be fine. Agree with you that Tui got screwed over but I think it's clear now that the bottom line is he's not an NFL starter

6:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

still not impressed at all with the offense though

5:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm excited to see us winning, but there are still some pretty big issues I have concerning the offense of the team. I'm hopeful that we can turn it around in this area. There is no need for us to struggle like we are offensively, especially with the talent we have.
I'm taking it one game at a time. I know this is a big game, and we should give it to the Seahawks. There is no reason we should not win out the rest of our schedule. But our offense cannot rely on the defense like this forever. They are going to have to start making plays when it counts. I'm glad we've won the last 2 games, but nothing significant was done offensively in either game to prove adjustments to the game plan. Simply put, the last 2 games could've been losses. Grant it they are not, but as we've seen all too much this season already, that you can't rely on luck every week.
The ship, in my mind, is still in the turning process, 1 game at a time. I'm hoping we go out there and take care of our business offensively this week. We all know what our defense is doing; now it's time for the offense to start shining.

2:02 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Sorry, I've been on the road, which put a squeeze on my time for takes. I appreciate all of you who keep the lights on around here!

I think we've all, in one form or another, gone from really pissed to quite excited in the span of a few weeks (the difference between 0-5 and 2-5 with a two-game win streak). But we need to score some points before we start spraying champagne (I mean, Schlitz Malt Liquor).

I've got barbecued sea chicken on my Monday Night menu!

2:23 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Pantryraider: Heckling SeaChickens on their blog sites. That's funny stuff.

I think we all share the same concerns about our offense. Perhaps it's time for a breakout game, who knows. At least the odds are good the Raiders will top the 98 yards gained last week.

My guess is the Seahawks D isn't as bad as they've played, and it seems Wallace is a capable QB.

Seahawks at home are about as tough as it gets for any team to match up against. Any team that plays there needs to take the 12th man out of the game quickly, or else. And the hometown fans will be pumped for Monday prime time.

If we have any real advantages this week, it's at their injury expense. Also, the Raiders have been studying film from the pre-season loss at Seattle. A tape I would hope to prove helpful to the Raiders due to Wallace's extensive playing time in that game.

I know I'm pumped for the game!! I only wish I could be there in a sea-o-chickens screaming for the visitors.

Where's Bo Jackson when we need him?!!!

2:40 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

For the sake of PantyRaider, I've put up a new post at BlandRocked.


3:43 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Raider Nate 75:

I remember during the 70s everyone always called the Raiders a "lucky team." The Raiders used to refer those people to a quote by Branch Rickey, "Luck is the residue of design." We weren't lucky. Against the Cardinals, our offense just "got it" for that game. Against the Steelers, our D was unbeatable.

NY Raider:

Ah, you reminded me of one of the greatest Raider moments in history. Bo Jackson's first trip to Seattle. We had been Seattle's bitch for, what, three years - then Bo Jackson set us free.

4:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This will be a great test for the Raiders.

Raiders seem to be just getting comfortable playing at home, but road games are a different animal.

Our D is very good, but our last road game in SF, we gave up some plays to a rather bad 9er team.
Maybe it was because the D was on the field so much, but that could very well happen again in Seattle.


Great point about Seattle, and all the noise problems we'll face.
I have a nightmare for how many times our O-line will jump offsides this game.


Great memory of Bo steamrolling Boz at the goal line.

8:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I respect everyone's desire to be patient with Walter (Ik, NY Raider, Raider00... good takes). I hope I'm proven wrong and Walter starts moving the chains and putting up some scores. Hopefully Porter will help by providing a tough, short outlet to throw to, and we're all hoping it'll help free up Moss as well. Right now our defense has started a fire under our team. Hopefully Fargas and Crokett have lit a fire under the contact avoiding Jordan! The biggest thing that'll help Walter is a run game that draws defensive attention. Can't just throw and throw. As the unltra-conservative Gene Stallings once said, when you pass, four things can happen and three of 'em are bad. With us two of those results, sacks and INT's, have absolutely killed us.
Does anyone know if Brayton is doing anything in this defensive resurgence? Stats don't show much from him. How can a guy playing opposite Burgess not be making considerable noise? Is Brayton still starting?
More on the defense: Howard tipped the ball that Ashomogue ran back and Morrison is all over the place. Robert Thomas had a great game too. What about Sam Williams? I'd be interested to hear other takes on Brayton and Williams, two guys I've never been sold on.

9:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't gone out on a limb and said it until now, but I have seen steady improvement from Brayton over the last three weeks, and that's one of the reasons their run defense has improved. He may never be a double digit sack guy, but I definitely see improvement happening. We have to remember, being at OLB for two years delayed his growth as an NFL defensive lineman. It takes some guys a few years to reach their potential on the defensive line...

9:43 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Mad Stork:

Re Brayton, I agree that he never should have been a LB. Remember his rookie year at DE, he was a bright spot because his motor was always running. Switching to LB seems to have confused his mind, slowing him down. But in those days we thought he'd be a great pass rusher someday. As it turns out, he's developing into a fairly solid DE against the run. Hope he keeps improving on that.

Re Sam Williams. I honestly think that we should not have converted Williams to OLB. In college he was a DE, and I think we should have left him there and put some more weight on him. But what Ryan was trying to do at that time was develope a 3-4 with LBs capable of stopping the run. I think the conversion that turned out the best for Ryan was Irons, but he's out for the season.

10:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sean Salisbury has named our defense a "playoff caliber defense" and that you can laugh at the offense, but if you laugh at the defense, you will get knocked around.

that's all for now

-Franco, raider fan in ireland

3:17 PM  

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