Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Giddyup, Raiders!

Some of you might accuse me of beating a dead horse with this take. Well, let me just say that I wouldn’t beat this horse if, in fact, I was convinced it was dead.

The horse of which I speak, of course, is our refusal to run a hurry-up offense while two scores down with less than five minutes left in the game last Sunday—and thus abdicating a basic function of football competition.

For every argument about what ails the Raiders, there is usually a reasonable counter argument. Is our playcalling truly horrible, or is it really matter of poor execution? Was the Jerry Porter situation mishandled or not? Is Art Shell making progress with this team, or is he losing control of it? I’ve heard good arguments supporting both sides of each equation.

But I defy anyone to offer a good excuse for allowing 45 seconds to elapse between a two-yard run and the next snap while two scores down, on the road, against one of the league’s most dominant defenses, with less than five minutes to play—right after burning another 45 seconds between that play and the previous one!

This, to me, is more egregious than merely losing games, dropping balls, calling bad plays or committing penalties. It is an abdication of a basic function of football competition. It has no place in the NFL, and certainly not in Oakland.

I watched with interest on Monday night when the Bears got the ball back with 7:20 remaining in the game. At the time, they were 10 points down—the same as the Raiders on Sunday night, but with a full two additional minutes on their side. They completed a nine-yard pass, in bounds, on first down. They then hustled to the line and took their next snap 22 seconds later (although the play was whistled dead by a false start). Their urgency was palpable. It was nothing special. It was just common football sense in action.

So why do the Raiders insist on defying common sense in similar circumstances? Amazingly, we experienced the same problem last year. For example, there was the infamous five-minute, fifteen-play touchdown drive beginning with seven minutes left in the game while three scores down against the Broncos. Later in the season, on the road against the Broncos, Tom Flores was heard audibly scratching his head on KSFO when the Raiders refused to get moving toward the end of another defeat. After that game, I wrote: It's a disgrace, this inability to enact urgency in the face of defeat, and thus to demonstrate any will to win. It is an affront not only to the Raider Nation, but to the game of football.

Let me say that the last thing I expected this season was more of the same. I thought that what I was seeing last year was a peculiar disease called “Norv Turner and Company.” How is it possible that this disease has become systemic, afflicting our new administration? This stuff should never happen. So why is it happening for a second straight year, across two separate administrations? How?

If you think I’m overreacting, that’s fine. I admit that this is a pet peeve. I simply can’t stand to see my team abdicate a basic function of football competition, over and over again. If I see one more instance like this latest one, I will literally freak out. I will protest in a manner heretofore unseen on Raider Take. No, I’m not going to douse myself with gasoline and set myself on fire in the Coliseum parking lot. But I will definitely freak out in a very creative manner—unless someone can come in here right now and tell me why I shouldn’t.

It’s an eight-hour round trip for me to the Coliseum this Sunday. That’s a lot of time, money and fossil fuel invested in supporting this team. Is it too much to ask that our coaches reward me (and all of you) with 60 minutes of common sense? I can be patient with this new regime. I can stomach losing. I can wait for a lot of our current issues to be settled. But I will not stand for a lack of urgency in the face of defeat.

So there you have it. Now I can get off my high horse, with hopes that I’ve finally beat this horse dead.


Blogger Calico Jack said...

Great post RT. Just call it the 6 P's: Piss Poor Planning and Preparation is your Pet Peeve!

The lack of urgency demonstrated against the Broncos in the 4th quarter is the equivalent of the players and coaching staff throwing in the towel. Unacceptable for any fan of any team.

11:16 PM  
Blogger Raider Raza said...

Great Post RT!!!

Im with you I scratch my head with bewilderment too, when we fail to do very basic fundamentals. I could understand a high school team struggling with a hurry up offense but a professional team.

How is that possible!!! Two years in a row is mind boggling; I just can’t explain it. These are full time football players, it’s not like they can’t game plan during the week cause they got other jobs, obligations and priorities. They are paid extremely well to play football.

Another thing is the penalties. Sure there are some bad penalties mainly questionable PI and roughing the QB, but the OL false starts are blatant and abundant. The Raiders seem to always commit dumb penalties.

Lastly is the lack of adjustments in the second half. How can there not be better game planning, when these professionals spend all week and all year preparing for football and game situations. It’s not rocket science!!!

I won’t set myself on fire either, but this teams struggles are painful to see.

I have never seen it but it’s going to break my heart when a Raider fan shows up to a game with a bag on their head like Cardinal and Saint fans frequently do.

It hasn’t happened but it has never been this bad…

11:59 PM  
Blogger Doobie said...

An eight hour round trip to the Coliseum? Wow, that must mean you heard their fourth quarter drives on the way to AND from the stadium.

5:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NY Raider said....

I think it goes back to the question... is it a players or coaches problem?

While it's largely the QB's responsibility to manage urgency on the field, we can hardly blame a young QB in his second NFL start who is simply following the direction of his coaching staff.

On the other hand, there's no excuse for players lumbering up to the line of scrimmage when urgency is requisite.

Then, there's the issue of cumbersome and wordy playcalling, as suggested by Tim Brown.

In the end, the players are professionals who are merely following the direction of their leaders. Reminds me of the scene in "A Few Good Men" when Keifer Sutherland is on the witness stand and testifies that marines are not allowed to decide which orders to follow and which ones not to follow.

Art Shell has peached order and discipline and more than demonstrated his intent with the Porter disruption.

Therefore, it follows to reason that the players are acting under the direction of their coaches, who, unfortunately, are not ready for prime time.

Come on! It's common sense. We draw players from the same gene pool as every other team in the NFL. Why are we the only team that can't call and execute a simple 2-minute drill.

So when asked about the execution of your Raiders' offensive coaching staff, say "I'm in favor of it."

NY Raider Fan

6:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know, it is a tough time to be a Raider fan faithful. To see our beloved team struggle like this. It is like we are in a rut, that we cannot get out of. There is a lot of muffled complaints about Al being too involved in coaching decisions. Let's take a long look at this.
The reason Al is so involved with the coaching aspect is because that is what he did when he first came to the Raiders. He coached them, and was the GM. He took them from a being a dismal 1-13 franchise in the AFL, to a 10-4 record in one year! He designed and perfected his style of football with this team, that made it a well-oiled; and feared. The problem is he hasn't changed with time. Sometimes that is good, and sometimes it is not. It is good not to be "blown by every whim" of change.
For instance, Alvin Whitted has speed at receiver, but no hands. Hmmm, who in the Raiders' history does this sound like? James Jett? He loves speedy guys to stretch the field. In the 60's, 70's and early 80's, you could get away with a bluff, and scare people. The challenge other opposing defenses had was, big bruising o-line and running game; and then a punch in the mouth speed of the long ball with no chance of even catching them because they are out of breath, and sore from the big bruising running game.
Well, something happened in the late 70's that other teams started catching on to. THE STEEL CURTAIN DEFENSE! They were pretty much a defense designed to PUNCH back. They did it by a physical, zone, read-n-react defense (from what I've seen). Today, teams mimick that defensive style and have tweaked it a little. For instance, the famous one of them is Tampa Bay's DC Monte Kiffin, Tony Dungy, Andy Reid, Bill Cowher, Marv Lewis (both in B-more and Cincy), Lovie Smith, and even Bill Parcells (who uses the 3-4 like Kiffin and Cowher).
In fact, the 3-4 is a direct result of stopping the WC offense. It was created to stop the WC offense. They designed it by watching college football film in relation to the "Option" style of offense, because for awhile, teams started using the option in the NFL (see the Randall Cunningham, Rodney Peete era). Defenses changed from the Steel Curtain Defensive style, and when that happened, Al Davis' style of play became more difficult to execute. Was it still possible? Yes, until teams were able to tweak and adjust it. I said it in a prior post, they stacked the line to stop the run up the middle; knowing the Raiders will not take advantage of the middle of the field. Even if they did, you had the safeties move up; but more than likely, it was a long deep post, or a long up the seam by the TE.
Other teams caught on to this, and adjusted to it. This is why Tom Flores won 2 Super Bowls with the Raiders (1979-80 and 1983-84 seasons), he used the middle of the field more with Todd Christiansen. But other than Gruden, who used more of a WC offense; he has been the only one. I personally feel the only reason why we did not go to a Super Bowl with Gruden is because he would not throw deep enough. Defenses today are set up to stop the WC offense, and that involves the running game. You stop short passes and strong runs with strong blitzes from the LB's, and Big DT pushes. The defensive side of the ball is now bigger and stronger than offensive lines. Which is why if the defense does not have speedy linebackers, the defense is defeated by the WC (something the Raiders have seen in the past 4 years defensively). As well, Al is still afraid of other teams going "long" on him, so he drafts speedy DB's, and neglects his LB's.
The sad thing about all of this is Al wants the "Long Ball" to be his primary offense, and hires coaches who do not compliment that style. Gruden said it best of Al Davis. "Yes he has his style. He wants his style implemented. If you have a different idea, you have to convince him that your way is better." The media, and a few Raider fans think that Al let Gruden go because Al was trying to impose on Gruden to change his style. They forget that Gruden had one year left on his contract and openly admitted that he would not re-sign with the Raiders because, "I'm tired of trying to convince him why my way works. I think I've proven that over the past 3 years." He was tired of feeling like he had to constantly prove himself with Davis. So what does Davis do? He "gets" something for Gruden. But since then, Al has hired coaches with that have a "passive" personalities. He's got to, at some point, start hiring coaches that are aggressive. Someone who will make their point, like Gruden, and at some point trust them enough to know that their system is complimenting what Davis wants. Because Gruden did not use the Long Ball, is the main reason why I feel he had to constantly explain his way to Davis.
If I were coach, or OC, I'd tell Al that I would use the "Long Ball" to be our primary offense; but that I am going to set it up with a combination of strong running, and short passes. I would take him to the film room, and we'd watch the "Gruden ERA," and I'd show him specifically when and where I'd throw "deep." I don't think that would take long to convince him.
Blandrocked said it best, when talking of Bill Walsh. He designed the WC to strengthen his offensive line to block better. Because it was a weakness. That is one of our players biggest issues right now, because we have a bunch of young guys starting. So why not use it, to strengthen their weakness, and develop the overall goal of the offense?
By doing this, you are not only developing your players, and setting up your system; but you are managing your clock better. To even further prove this system works, is this is exactly what Jimmy Johnson did in his run with the Cowboys. He developed a strong running game with Emmitt Smith, along with short passes to Alvin Harper; which set up the big blasts to Michael Irvin.
I hate the Cowboys, and I hate talking about this; but Johnson used and tweaked a system to his advantage.
The Raiders need to do this. They have the talent to, and it fits perfectly to Al Davis' style. He knows it too, that is why he has persistently pursued Johnson to be his coach the past 4 years.

8:00 AM  
Blogger StickUm25 said...

I agree that the coaching has been suspect, but the one thing we don’t know is how well Walter has picked up the offensive system. With all the clamoring to play him, everyone noted that they’d rather struggle with him than play Brooks, who most felt was not the answer. It seems as though folks are not cutting him as much slack as they should.

The quarterback has to set the tempo. He has to be the guy waving guys into the huddle, barking out the call, and getting everyone to the line. We’ve had two extreme examples over the last few years. There were was never any doubt that Gannon displayed the passion and urgency to get things going at the end of the game. With Collins you might have thought he was taking a leisurely Sunday stroll through the park. I think Walter would be better prepared today if he had spent a season watching Gannon over Collins, but what are you gonna do?

Now as to the why, was it that the coaches again were not getting plays in on time? Were they limited in what they could call because he hasn’t grasped enough of the playbook yet? How confident is Walter right now – is he in sync with Walsh, thinking a couple of plays ahead, or is he just executing what he is given? I don’t think it’s so simple to say he’s been playing for 10 years, he should know how to do this by now, etc. In my opinion, the more egregious error was not getting the ball snapped when a donkey jumped offsides late in the game – now that’s football 101. You always snap the ball in that situation, and he didn’t. In any event, without knowing all the facts, I’m just hoping he keeps playing. I’m willing to bet we see a much different, better, quarterback by game 10.

Anyways, patience! At this point it’s obvious we’ll need to modify our goals for the year. The defense improvement is evident – by the end of the year this will no doubt be considered a strength for us. On offense, ignoring the stupid penalties for the moment, the line is improving. 1st down play selection aside, I am glad to see us committing to the run. We all saw how the yardage increased late in the game – that’s a function of us not abandoning the run. Remember, Shell was hired late in the offseason, so even if he hadn’t selected Walsh, who was the alternative? Assuming the team’s attitude stays positive (for the most part), improvement is noticeable, I think we’ll have a better shot at getting decent OC for next year. Or even better, maybe Walsh simplifies the language, if that is truly an issue, and we see improvement this year. I don’t think we’re at the point where we’re in “wait til next year mode” – don’t freak out yet!

8:17 AM  
Blogger Roy said...

We are all hurting inside. Please win this week, please!

8:59 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

There's far more which goes on here than meets any of our eyes. There is something major league politcal going on in the Raider organization. Perhaps it has to do with the health of Davis, and the long term plans for the team.

Of note is an article today (can't rember which one, but you can find it on Sapp talked about that 50+ yard catch by Walker at the end of the first half against Denver.

Sapp said that Shell had warned them repeatedly that Denver goes deep once per quarter. Since they hadn't thrown the long pass yet that quarter, everyone on the sideline was yelling "watch the shot, watch the shot!" Sanford missed the assignment. As the nickle, he was supposed to provide support for Nhamdi. Sapp said that he doesn't understand it. That they go over and over these things in practice, and yet fail to do what they've been instructed to do on the field. In this situation, they prepared for it and they knew it was coming, and when it was coming. Yet they missed the assignment!

This provides support to those of us who have been saying that Shell is doing his job, but the players aren't learning or mastering. Note that Sapp was talking about the defense, where they've been together and working under the same coach. The problems are considerably worse on offense.

Something is going on that is causing the players to resist everything they're being taught, or something is going on to distract them and keep their heads out of the game. I think that's the only answer. And we can only guess what might be causing it.

It's not Al Davis. From what I'm hearing, Davis has not made his presence felt at all this season.

1:46 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Read this and see if you can make heads or tails of the mystery.

I know that it is routine to work on the hurry up offense during camp. It is routine to teach "the hustle." Shell clearly understands his opponents, sometimes predicting exactly what they'll do. But as Sapp says, they come out on game day and it doesn't look like they've worked "on ANYTHING." [emphasis my own]

Obviously there are some players who are working their butts off, and giving it their best shot on game day. But there are just enough malcontents who won't keep their heads in the game. Are these Porter allies? That's all I can come up with, is that there is a corps of malcontented players which will have to be weeded out.

2:17 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Sorry, meant to provide the link.

2:19 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

The plot definitely thickens...

Regarding this specific issue (the inability to enact a hurry-up offense when common sense and competitive obligation dictate no alternative), I see two explanatory options:

#1: We are LITERALLY UNABLE to enact a hurry-up offense at this time (because our players can't handle it, or they refuse to implment it or or our coaches don't know how to do it, etc.). In which case, someone needs to lose their job...yesterday.

#2. We ARE capable of enacting a hurry-up offense, but we did not do so in Denver last week because...Why? As fans, we are owed an explanation for this epic lapse in competitive logic, are we not?

It would be nice if the media would help us press the issue. To me, this episode was the most objectionable and scandalous part of the entire game, yet the media completely ignore it.

2:28 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

RT and PR:

Here's the theory I'm working on. The thing about a suspension is that it not only prevents the suspended player from being paid, it bars them from the facilities. Is it just possible that word of Porter disrupting confidence in the system got back to Shell?

I'm thinking that this began in Super Bowl week in 2002. At that time it was already plainly evident that Callahan was not getting along with a large number of players. The following season, things got much worse. Many of the players were seeking out Al Davis to intervene between them and the coach. The media caught on to this and reported it at the time. Folks assumed that when Callahan was fired, the whole issue was left behind.

But Turner is what you'd call an inspirational leader. I think that in order to protect themselves against Callahan (with no intervention by the owner) they formed cliques in order to have others watch their backs. And I think those cliques (absent strong leadership elsewhere) remained through Turner's regime. By the time Shell came on board, that had become the player's typical MO. The inmates were running the asylum.

I think that whatever clique Porter was a member of is still watching Porter's back, and Porter has convinced them that he was right, and Shell should have never been hired. They don't care whether they win this year. It would be better if they lost every game. That way, Shell gets fired and they win.

PR may be right in that the suspension of Porter solves some of the problem. At least that clique may begin to understand that in a power struggle, Shell holds all of the cards. My take, though, is that this will continue for awhile, and not end before we hear some very bizarre stories coming out of Raider headquarters.

RT, is it just possible that the Raiders were working on the hurry up in the practice Porter disrupted - and then Shell decided they didn't perform it well enough to run it? It's worth a thought.

3:29 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...


It was Callahan. There was reportedly some GREAT ANIMOSITY between most of the team and Callahan before he was fired. And why did they say they objected to Callahan? Because he came in his second year and wanted to revamp the entire offense! Callahan was resentful because he felt that Davis should have intervened for him, and made it clear that the inmates were not running the asylum. All of this was very counter intuitive at the time, because of the notion that Davis sticks his nose in at every opportunity. Apparently Davis' attitude was, "you're the coach, you work it out!" With Shell, he's apparently done the same thing, but I don't think Shell ever asked him to intervene (nor would he).

If I'm right about Porter, here's a prediction. Once it became clear that there was no trade interest in Porter, Shell suspended him in an attempt to recover some of the money they're contracted to give him (a little over a million dollars). They're hoping that the league upholds the suspension. Regardless whether the suspension is one week or four, Shell will cut Porter at the end of it. He won't allow Porter back in the facilities.

Those team members who are friends of Porter's will bear watching. Are they tanking it? The only friend I know Porter has for sure is Cooper, who plays Madden Football with him in the locker room. He's also defended Porter several times. Who else?

4:12 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Fuel for my pyre - regarding Cooper. This from the inside the bay blog:

"– Jarrod Cooper, the outrageous safety who never lets a thought go unspoken, was asked if the Jerry Porter suspension had caused a division in the locker room and had his most incredible response yet.

“I’m going to have to say no comment on that one,'’ Cooper said.

Cooper was told it was the first time anyone had ever heard him utter those words.

“I think it’s the first time I’ve ever said those words,'’ Cooper said.

Which tells you all you need to know about how Cooper feels about Porter getting suspended for four weeks without pay."

4:43 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

In a way, I am heartened that, with all of the great minds that visit Raider Take, including those who have commented here, no one has has come up with a reasonable explanation for why we abdicated a basic function of football competition last Sunday. It means I'm not crazy. It means I'm freaking out on solid ground.

No offense intended, BlandaRocked. You did your best to pose a scenario in which we might find the roots of an excuse. I'm not saying it's out of the realm of possibility. But it's a considerable stretch to think that we could have learned to run a hurry-up offense if our Friday practice six weeks into the season hadn't been disrupted by Jerry Porter.

Therefore, I think it still boils down to one of the two possible explanations that I cited above, and for which there are no excuses.

4:57 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

This could indeed by why some coaches don't want to come here, and why others have not been offered the job. I have a feeling that Davis advised coaches he inteviewed that he felt there were problems with player attitudes, and questioned them about how they would address it. The interviewed coaches then go to their contacts inside the Raider organization for a full run down on the "problems." The next thing you hear from the potential HC is, I don't want to be considered.

The idea that coaches just don't want to battle with Davis has always been rediculous. It certainly didn't do Gruden's career any harm.

Davis was looking for a very dominating individual to get this team right, so he chose Shell. Dr. Art is being asked to operate and to remove the cancer.

5:01 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Raider Take:

You missed the point. The hurry up uses a different set of plays against every oponent. Plays designed to meet a particular defense. They have to run those plays, usually in a team walk through, during the week. If Shell didn't feel they had a handle on it, he wouldn't run it.

The hurry up was not an issue in any of the previous four games. They couldn't get that far because of the mistakes.

5:09 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Panty Raider:

I don't know for sure that I'm right. Not enough information. No clue how to fix it. But, if my theory is correct, it's going to get weirder before it gets better. It's just the only thing that makes sense to me.

I can't believe that Shell isn't coaching. He's at least coaching as well as he did the first go-round, this team is better than some he coached before. The idea that Shell simply overlooks installing a no-huddle offense is absurd. That's like saying Tiger Woods neglected to practice his putting.

5:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


The real reason there is a divide on this team is because the way Shell has handled the Porter situation, has not worked.

How would you feel if you were on this team, and you watched Porter left inactive, while Gabriel was traded, and the guy ended up taking the position, Whitted cannot do the job ?

Any player who wants to win would be mad.


Why can't we run a hurry up offense ?
I don't know, probably the same reason players jump offsides over, & over.
The same reason Jordan doesn't know the lateral rule.
The same reason assignments are missed in key spots.

This team is crazy man.

Call in Frazier Crane.

They need a brain doctor fast !!!!

5:29 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Well, perhaps you could say that we somehow (Jerry Porter! Nuclear bomb threats!) missed the opportunity to finalize plans for a two-minute drill, but that's not the same as taking 45 seconds to snap a ball after a two-yard run. That's not a no-huddle issue. It's not a two-minute drill issue. It's a mental illness issue.

There are various times in a game when you might be called upon to mobilize and accelerate your play (and playcalling), such as at the end of the first half. Or in the case of the Bears on Monday, with seven minutes to go, because you are down two scores and time is getting short.

Don't tell me that the Bears fully programmed a seven-minute drill on Friday before the game!

You don't necessarily have to implment a programmed no-huddle at that point, but you do have to get moving and accelerate your game. And there's simply no excuse for not being able to do so.

5:30 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

RT -

In direct response to the question you posed (Why the Raiders were inable to enact the hurry-up offense), I would say it is ...

"#1: We are LITERALLY UNABLE to enact a hurry-up offense at this time (because our players can't handle it, or they refuse to implment it or or our coaches don't know how to do it, etc.). In which case, someone needs to lose their job...yesterday"

It makes me sick to say it but do you remember a few weeks ago when an entire week's worth of practice was devoted to simply getting in and out of the huddle?

After temporarily correcting this problem, we still are having trouble consistenly getting in and out of the huddle in enough time for Walter to be able to comfortable survey the D and change the protection and play if necessary.

If the team is unable to simply accelerate the tempo during the normal course of a game, the hurry up offense is like calculus to students still stuck on basic arithmetic.

What is the solution to this sad shortcoming? Can Walsh. It has been well documented about how his verbiage is convoluted and too long for play calls. 20 frickin words to name a play?

First off, we are running a very stripped, down basic offense. Shouldn't the play calling verbiage also be stripped down?

In addition to canning Brokeback, the Raiders would seem to need to run longer practices. A training camp, back to basics mentality needs to be the focus of practices. Master the fundaments and basic components of an offense which would include the hurry up offense.

7:23 PM  
Blogger Doobie said...

Whoa, we're being overtaken by consipracy theorists! :)

I think you guys make decent points, but it may not be as complicated as that. I think the division of the team after the benching of Porter is to be expected.

We live in a world of selfish personalities in sports, who expect to be catered to as long as they have the talent to back up their pouty personnas. It's not a stretch to think that no matter how big of an asshole the team thinks Porter is, they'll want him to play if it improves the team.

But as for downright sabotage, such as intentionally blowing assignments? I'm not so sure. As I mentioned in the last post, it's important in any business for new management to be able to sell their plans for success to the staff if they want to succeed. If they can't do that, it's going to affect perfomance as people will have difficulty mentally committing themselves to the new system. And with the media pundits against them, the Raiders coaching staff has been on a treacherous road since the preseason. Sapp's comments about how the team sometimes look like they never prepared during the week makes sense...if you have doubts about the system, as soon as bad things start to happen in-game, you might get tempted to ditch what you've learned and try to get by on instinct.

But still, while disgruntled employees are always a concern, you rarely have people who are willing to put their jobs on the line just to try to make managment look bad. Even for the scrubs of the team, a several hundred thousand dollar a year job isn't something most people want to risk.

7:46 PM  
Blogger x said...


Yes, you should freak out if they do that again.

I'll be right there freakin' out with you, like I did along with you last week while watching the play clock tick down nearly to zero on every damn play. You've got me mad again thinking about it.

Look, we're not even talking about necessarily running a full-blown no-huddle, which evidently can't be done with an inexperienced QB (false)....just want to see them getting in and out of the huddle and up to the line of scrimmage faster.

That pissed me off more than Jordan ignoring the fumble/lateral the week before.

8:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

RT, you have me thinking.

I have to admit something, I've only realized tonight.

Yes I love the Raiders, and, while I can be blunt at times, of course I'm still hoping Al Davis can find some of that old Raider magic.

But, for some reason, I think I really hate most of the Raiders players.

I don't know what it is. I can't really put my finger on it. All I know is most of these guys turn my stomach.

Maybe it's the lazy attitude, or the same little, and big mistakes over, and over again.

Maybe it's the way they act as if they run the team.
Maybe it's because they're just not as good as they think they are.

Maybe it's how they've taken the greatest team in all sports, and turned them into a pile of stinkin crap.

Like I said, I really don't know why I feel this way.
I just do.

I wish we could just waive most all of'em, and start all over.

8:50 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

X, you are a true brother in outrage!

Calico Jack, I love your choice of door #1. You make a persuasive case. Everyone, check out Calico Jack's Silver and Black Forever for more on the subject.

Raider00, that's brutal, but understandable under the circumstances. Personally, I think players with upside like Walter, Carr, Cooper, Huff, McQuistan, Boothe, Lechler, Fargas, Howard, Curry, Madsen and others offer a measure of redemption for a team that has lost its way, and perhaps a large part of its heart.

It pains me to be on such a negative track right now. I can't wait for the clouds to part.

Really, it's amazing that we're even talking about some of this stuff, that we are faced with so many failures to execute rudimentary facets of the game, things such as not accelerating your play when two scores down in the fourth quarter, or not throwing a red flag when every camera angle screams reversal, or running the ball on 16 straight first downs, or not jumping on the ball after a lateral, or false starting over and over and over again, etc.

If it wasn't happening, I would say it was impossible.

10:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I said I hate most, not all.

I am holding out much hope for the young players.
I just wish they would play more.

Especially the forgotten...



I like your idea's.
At the firesale, you can be in charge of refreshments.

10:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

On a more serious note, regarding the endless stupid penalties, big, and small the Raiders commit.
As, RT said, these mistakes run through most every Raider administration since after Flores.

I remember something Al Davis said years ago. He said he wanted his Raiders players to "Be Free", during games.

Is this an idea that has been taken to far ?
Is this the reason players are seemingly doing whatever the hell they want during games ?

Also remember Phil Villapiano stating when he played for the Raiders, "Just get rid of the rules, and you can be a great player with the Raiders".

Again, perhaps a philosophy gone astray.
I don't know what else could explain this madness, from coach, to coach, to coach, and on, and on, and on, with no end in sight.

10:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

welcome back. I'll think we'll see the hurry up in week nine or ten, judging by the current rate of progress. We're dealing with a team of guys with high expectations after Norv had to walk the plank, being coached by two guys who have been off the sidelines for many years. Look at week one vs. now. We weren't even competitve. They had bigger fish to fry than the no-huddle. Now the blocking is better, turnovers are down, we go for it on fourth down when behind, etc.. It's like the coaches are re-learning the game. I imagine they'll get far enough along to get to the hurry-up O in a couple weeks....Compare to the D where an experienced coach is doing a good job and starting basically rooks and second year guys.

6:56 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

LK, I fear that you may be right, as disgraceful and embarrassing as it might be...At this level of competition, there's just no excuse. It's the equivelent of going to the Metropolitan Opera and hearing the tenor sing off key, or watching a golfer whiff shots at the Masters. I mean, this is the NFL!

How can it take an NFL team nine weeks to figure out how to hustle to the line when two scores down with less than five minutes in a game?

Well, you've just outlined how...And it speaks to some collossal shortcomings.

7:14 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

On a different subject...

This is the third sellout in a row. Every regular season game has been sold out this season for an 0-5 team, even though two of those games were against perenial bottom feeders, Browns and Cards.

If this doesn't accentuate the incompetence of the OFMA, I don't know what does. Al Davis' biggest win this season (even if the team were winning) is taking control of the ticket sales.

I don't know how much you folks recognize the importance of this, or just how bad the Raiders have been doing financially. But this will be huge for Raider teams in coming years. It means Al will once again have the money to attract the leagues great players.

Now if they can just start winning, they can fill those luxury boxes for years to come, and even Mt. Davis will be filled with season ticket holders.

9:12 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...


It's true about the A's, but their new stadium may not be completed for a year or two. They've signed a short term lease with Oakland in the meantime.

This won't do the Raiders any good, because the Raiders don't control the HOT, they just lease it for the course of the NFL schedule. But sellouts don't mean just more ticket money from the seats, they also mean local television, which means greater TV revenues.

I suspect that the Raiders would have handled the Porter situation much differently if Porter's bonus money didn't represent such a loss. I think then, the Raiders would have just gotten rid of him for a second day draft pick before the season started.

12:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Something else to think about this weekend--Andrew Walter vs. the guy we passed on because of him. Yikes!
A-Dub, you better bring the A-game at home because Leinart's not looking too bad

1:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

as I watched Leinart bring the Cards downfield in the last two minutes vs. the Bears D [after it woke up no less] for the winning FG attempt, I started thinking 'did we draft the right guy". I'm dying to be convinced on Sunday....

1:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To all who love the Raiders.

This is my plan to save the team.

First, I would let Walsh finish the season. If he turns it around, great. If not, we still end up with a top 3 draft pick.
A win, win, situation.

Assuming things keep going down, I would then Fire Walsh after the season, but keep Shell as HC.

I would then hire Steve Mariuchi as OC.
I realize this would signal an end to the old Gilman/Davis vertical attack, but let's face it, it aint looking to good right now.

I would give Shell one more year to get it going, and if he cannot, I would boot the big man upstairs(to save face), and promote Mariuchi to HC, and allow him to bring in his own staff.

That's right, his whole, ENTIRE, staff.

Mariuchi is very close to Gruden in style, and philosophy.
We could do alot worse,(Jim Fassel).

So that is my plan. What do you think ???????????

2:00 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...


I like your plan except for the Mariuchi part. While I liked Gruden, I didn't much like his offense, even though it was effective. I love the deep pass. Gruden said when you throw deep only three things can happen and two of them are bad. The Gilman doesn't mind some interceptions on the deep pass, viewing it as as good as a punt.

But one of the things that I could never quite understand is why the Raiders didn't like Terry Robiskie as an OC. I liked his style. He would spend the week talking about, "I think we can throw against this team." Then on the opening drive would run 8 running plays in a row. Or, conversely, he'd spend the week saying, "I think we can run on this team." Then call 10 passing plays in a row on the opening drive.

But the reality is, as long as Shell is HC, it's going to be the Gilman. If he's successful at installing it, you won't be disappointed. If he's not successful, he will be fired or moved upstairs, and then the new coach coming in will be able to instill his own offense. I think that's likely the way it will work.

2:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


You blogged a while back that there are elements of the Gilman offense alive, & well with most teams today.

I agree.

But I think this is true for the Mariuchi/Gruden offense as well.

If you watch Gruden coached teams since he left the Raiders, you will notice that he does have his Qb's throwing some deep passes.

I believe the only reason he didn't do this while HC of Oakland, was because Rich Gannon just did not have the arm strength to do it.

No knock on Gannon, but he was simply a great dart thrower.
The long ball just wasn't his thing.

The only real recent success the Raiders have had, has been with more of a WC style offense.

I agree it would work even better with some deeper throws mixed in.
I think a combo of Mariuchi, + Walter, would allow the Raiders to have a more balanced attack, of short throws, and long.

Remember, even in the WC offense, the TE, & FB are important player's in it's success.
So, indeed, there are many aspects of the Gilman/Davis philosophy in both approaches.

2:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember when you first talked about the "Hurry up" offense. I was at that game and unlike the Gannon years our lumbering to the line antics has cost us.

You are not alone RT, in the observation and I think in the great number of issues our offense has. This might show the lack of passion most.

What I have seen would make any High School coach hand out laps like CRAZY! Our team is not ready to play this Sid Gillman offense.

Tom "Mayor of Brokeback" I-DA-HO is still changing the offense from week to week trying to make a system is like trying to winn the lotto .

I hope Al sees and will "handle" Walsh right out the door. Once our team has faith in the offense things will change.

Great Job Sean............Hope to see you at the game this Sunday against the House of "Cards"

2:53 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

If it happens this season, it will happen like this. First the Raiders will defeat a weak opponent by the slightest of margins. Then they'll lose a couple of games to perceived powerhouses by similar narrow margins. The things that lead to the downfall in these games will be readily identifiable - a mistake on crucial drive, a missed coverage assignment late in the game. "We'd have won those games if..."

Then, inexplicably, the Raiders will beat somebody destined for the playoffs. In fact, the Raiders will kick their ass. "The [losing team] just had a let down, the press will tell us. Then, surprisingly, it will happen again.

The Raiders' season will end on December 31st. Players will be signed and released in the off-season. The Raiders will do okay in the following pre-season, perhaps splitting their four games. The press will remind us how well the Raiders did in pre-season of 2006, and warn us that the disaster of the regular season of 2006 will be repeated. Perhaps it will even be worse - unless Al Davis sells the team and Art Shell is fired.

The first game of the season will arrive, and the Raiders will take it 24-14, behind a stout defense and a confident offense.

It's almost the end of the day on Friday, and it seems to me that the Cards are a good place for this to start.

Here's to you Raider fans! Have a good weekend, and come back to work with a victory.

3:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The autumn wind is a pirate" ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha, man that cracks me up! You go wit yo bad selves faidas, ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha, "faida national" out. Just stop making me laugh baby. 0-6, the streak is alive and well!

10:01 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Dude, the moment you realize how pathetic you are is the moment we'll no longer hear from you. Chew on that for a second.

2:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow panty faida sure is eloquent, I hope that one day I might be as proficient in the english language so that I will be able to communicate with all you highly edumacated faida fanatics. Let me take a swig off my 40 oz. and I'll try real hard to be like you! "the autumn wind is pirate" yuk yuk yuk yuk ha ha ha ha ha ... Haven't seen that commercial lately... I wonder why. You guys are LOSERS, just come to grips with it, look in the mirror. Take off that stupid gorilla rilla suit first genius, and then blow some more smoke up each of your fellow faida fanatics asses. "faida national" out. Just cringe baby. 0-6, 0-7, 0-8, 0-9, 0-10.......

12:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The autumn wind is (A) pirate" Sorry faida intellectuals. "faida national" out. Don't you guys see how STUPID that sounds? "faida nation", "faida broadcasting network", "commitment to excrement", "pride and poise". Say them over and over to yourself..... Get it yet? Well if you don't you're a MORON.

12:08 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Yeah I get it Anon ... you are a spineless, pathetic child trapped in a man's body.

Your unoriginal, pointless, and ignorant rants demonstrates 2 things:

(1) Your life is sad, empty and meaningless

(2) You are easily amused by your own "clever" remarks. Congratulations!

Now put down the crayons and run along sport.

12:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon, unlike you, the Raiders will eventually get better.

NY Raider

6:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You guys are pitiful excuses for human beings, but then what would we do if the world didn't have an abundance of brutish, moronic people like you to collect garbage, clean porta-potties, dig ditches etc., LIVE WITH IT, THE FAIDAS SUCK, YOU SUCK, YOU CAN EAT MY SHORTS, 0-6 is a given, 0-7, 0-8, 0-9, 0-10, 0-11, 0-12, 0-13, 0-14, 0-15, 0-16. That's all, "faida national" out, just put your lips together and blow, baby. You wish you had my mind, I'm like Aristotle to you.

1:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Raider00 said, "I believe the only reason he didn't do this while HC of Oakland, was because Rich Gannon just did not have the arm strength to do it.

No knock on Gannon, but he was simply a great dart thrower.
The long ball just wasn't his thing."
I disagree, he was doing quite well with the "long ball" under Norv Turner's first year. When he went out in Week 3 of the '04 Season, the Raiders were 2-1 going into Week 4, and Gannon had already thrown 524 yards in 2 weeks and 1 Quarter. Gannon threw for 305 yards, and had a 38 yard TD pass and a 58 Yard TD pass in the first week in the Pitts loss; had thrown for 209 yards, and had a 41 yard pass and a 43 yard TD pass in Week 2 win against Buffalo. He had thrown 10 more yards before being blasted by Brooks in Week 3 vs. Tampa.
I really believe if Gannon would have stayed healthy, the '04 season would've had a different outcome for us, but as history tells us, he was injured and replaced by KFC.
Gannon was a dart thrower, yes, but he was a great long ball thrower as well, who had accuracy, able to read defensive coverage, and didn't make stupid mistakes when he did throw long, unlike KFC and "Smiley" Brooks.

11:30 AM  

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