Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Aaron Brooks: Exile Island

On the past few seasons of the reality show Survivor, they have implemented a new twist called Exile Island, in which a contestant is banished to a barren little island for a night. If the Oakland Raiders were playing Survivor (hey, wait, maybe they are!), then I think Exile Island might be populated by a guy named Aaron Brooks.

I don’t mean that the team has intentionally exiled Aaron Brooks, but rather that circumstances have conspired to isolate him, adding yet another layer of drama and uncertainty to our offense as we close out the season and look forward to next year.

Here’s what I wrote on December 4, after the Texans game: Aaron Brooks was really pissed off about something late in the second quarter. He gestured repeatedly toward the sideline after plays, raising his arms in apparent bewilderment or anger. What was up with that? Was he angry with the playcalling, or upset with his teammates? When the drive failed, he roamed the sideline alone. I am convinced that we have serious relationship issues on our offense. I see very little communication or togetherness on the sideline. I see a unit divided. It explains what we’re seeing on the field, which is an absence of timing and chemistry, along with inexcusable confusion and lack of execution unrelated to talent.

Now, here’s a report from the San Francisco Chronicle, filed this week: Signed in the off-season to a two-year contract, Brooks doesn't know whether the Raiders will pick up his $5 million option for next year. From the sounds of it, Brooks will be just fine walking away…"What's really going on?" Brooks said. "You see issues across the board, as far as offensively is concerned, that make you think like, 'What the f--- have I got into?' It's been tough, man. A lot of time I've been biting that fist of mine. F--- it, I gotta do it, good or bad."…He saved the nasty stuff for wide receivers Jerry Porter and Randy Moss, saying he's talked to them about their complaining ways to no use. He gave a brutally honest assessment of the offensive line's protection problems and the three-step pocket that collapses quicker than he can release the ball.

I guess I was right. When your quarterback has no respect for, or chemistry with, your top two receivers, then you’re in trouble. When, on top of that, your pocket frequently collapses around this quarterback faster than it takes John Madden to say, “Boom!” then you’re really in trouble. And, when the quarterback in question is prone to ill-timed mistakes, then you’ve got a perfect storm of trouble. Welcome to your 2006 Raiders offense.

It’s clear that Aaron Brooks never gelled, personally or professionally, with Randy Moss or Jerry Porter. A brutal opening game, followed by an injury, further disrupted Brooks’ integration into the offensive fabric. Upon his return, he brought an immediate spark to our offense, and continued to maintain an upbeat attitude, at least in the press (until Monday, of course), but the spark has since been snuffed.

Now it looks like Brooks' tenure as our starting quarterback might end just as it began: ugly. Is Brooks part of the offensive problem, or a victim of it? At this point, it’s really hard to say. I think he’s a good man. I think he has legitimate gripes about Moss, Porter and the offensive line. I think he can be effective under the right circumstances. But I doubt that he is going to find these circumstances in Oakland, even if Moss and Porter hit the road.

In other words, Aaron Brooks may have a future, but he isn’t our future. But if he isn’t our future at quarterback, who is? It's a question we'll have to ask very soon.

P.S. This take is dedicated to Tim Mo, who gave me a little hell about having a take.


Blogger Joaquin said...

I never thought that Brooks was the “answer” and felt that he was being brought in as a “wild card” especially with our history with “washed-up" QBs.
I felt that both he and Walter would battle it out in camp and that Walter would win. I was wrong. But where I was drop-dead-wrong was in thinking that our O was going to be decent. Not great…just, decent. I wasn’t sure about the OC. Hell, who was? I knew that at RB we were fine. At QB we were…ok. The receivers are damn good, but I had NO IDEA that our OLine would be this bad especially with Shell and Slater watching the gauges. Quite honestly, OLine problems were not on my horizon.
Is Brooks the problem? No. Hell no! We could have Montana or Marino back there and our record would be the same. Was Brooks a participant in this debacle?………..YUP!
I feel certain that Brooks will be back, but he’s not getting $5 mil from us or any other team for that matter.

12:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No offense to Aaron Brooks supporters, but if anyone thought Brooks was going to help this team, they have never seen Brooks play during his time at the Saints. He makes horrible decisions at the exact wrong times. If our offense was any better, people would realize his horrible decision makings. Does anyone know how many times Aaron Brooks has killed a drive? There is a reason no one wanted this guy, because he sucks, has always sucked, and will always suck.

2:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

panty raider, if the season ended today, Detroit would have the #1 pick and Oakland would have the #2 pick due to the fact that Detroit has played a weaker schedule than Oakland. This is where playing in the competitive AFC West, comes back to bite the Raiders in the ass, because those are all losses against quality teams with winning records. Detroit plays in the weak NFC North and still can't get the victories. If both teams lose out, Detroit will get the #1 pick. However the teams will swap picks in subsequent rounds. meaning the Raiders will have the top pick in rounds 2, 4, and 6.

6:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


My hand is extended. I did not intend to question you as a fan. It is not my way. I thought in an earlier blog, you said you did not consider me a citizen of the Raiders Nation simply because I questioned some of Al Davis' recent moves.
Perhaps I took it the wrong way, and misunderstood.
It's been a long, hard season for everyone.

If the Raiders really have no future plans for Brooks, why is he starting the last 2 games ??

6:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the Raiders really have no future plans for Brooks, why is he starting the last 2 games ......................................... because art doesn't want walter to start,he is "teaching him a lesson" about speaking out..meanwhile brooks has jumped ship along with moss and porter and the o-line..... oh the joy of it all...

7:15 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

RT - In regards to your main point or question in your post which was:

"In other words, Aaron Brooks may have a future, but he isn’t our future. But if he isn’t our future at quarterback, who is? It's a question we'll have to ask very soon."

The 2007 QB FA class is VERY light.
The only QB that would excite me is Matt Schaub. Here is the complete list;

Matt Schaub, RFA, Falcons
Chris Simms, UFA, Bucs
Damon Huard, UFA, Chiefs
Rohan Davey, RFA, Cards
Shaun King, UFA, Colts
John Navarre, RFA, Cards
Tim Rattay, UFA, Bucs
Anthony Wright, UFA, Bengals

This list is a whose who of scrubs, journeymen, and stiffs.

The other options are to trade for a QB (which rarely happens) and to draft a QB (which is not our MO).

Where does that leave us? Unless we aggressively go after Schaub or roll the dice on Quinn, our best route (in my opinion) would be to get the best possible game manager (ie. Huard) and build our offense around a RB (Peterson) and our D. I see no reason whatsoever to bring back Brooks and dish out $5M for his "services".

I have seen Carr & Culpeppers names bandied about on this blog but both are under contract.

Am I missing something or someone? It seems very bleak on the QB front to say the least.

9:08 PM  
Blogger sixptstar said...

I know i'll catch static for this, but i'm not giving up on Walter yet. Anyone would have struggled behind our week offensive line. Walter never had a chance back there because he was in constant fear for his life. Let's not forget he broke many of Elway's records at ASU, and Elway started with just about the same win loss ratio after his first 10 games.

I say we trade Porter and Moss for some O-line, then work with the draft picks. First round pick: Calin Johnson - Georgia Tech. An immediate WR replacement for what Porter and Moss should have been. We have a decent set of recievers to work with after that.

2nd round - best RB left on the board. I haven't given up on LJ. The running game starts with the O-line. LJ did not get any help up front, and we just don't have a real option to help him carry the load.

I haven't looked much past that for the 2007 draft. But if Walter doesn't have what it takes, look at Colt Brennan from Hawaiia state for the 2008 draft. That's a franchise quarterback I would love to see in Silver & Black.

Anyway, give Walter a sense of security in the pocket and he might do well. I'm not ready to call him a Kerry Collins re-run yet. Brooks as insurace at a lower price maybe? Some of Calico Jack's merry band of traveling quartbacks as insurance?

9:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, what washed up bum do we sign in the off season?

I can't wait to see what Turd we try and polish while we pass on Brady Quinn.

5:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We don't get a QB. Our problems extend beyond the o-line. sixptstar said, "I haven't given up on LJ. The running game starts with the O-line." 1 game where a RB of ours went over 100 yards makes me want to burn down the running game. The running game starts with the running back looking to create (i.e. Barry Sanders, who had no blocking either). That is why I like Pittman (OSU) and Hart (Michigan). Both backs create and have great vision of the field; whereas LJ and Fargas only see what is in front of them. Our running attack is nothing, and it does nothing for our passing game; regardless of who is our QB.
You have to have blocking and a running game to be successful. We have neither at this point. We haven't had a good running game since Charlie Garner left.
Do not waste a pick on a QB. We need a dominating RB like Pittman and Hart. We need dominating offensive lineman.

6:48 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

A lot of us seem to have forgotten what we seemed to know instinctively when Brooks was brought in, and only signed to a two year contract. Brooks was here to allow Walter to develope, at which time Walter would become the steady Raider QB. Brooks was never intended to be anything but temporary.

Most of us hoped that Walter would shine in the preseason, and take over this year, leaving Brooks as a capable backup. However the preseason showed that our OL was going to be a weakness, and Shell chose (was forced really) to stick with Brooks because of his superior mobility.

When Brooks went down with an injury, Walter was pressed to start with a bad OL, and without any prior experience dealing with that sort of a problem. Walter didn't do well. Whether he could have done better with a better OL, we don't know.

Because of that cirumstance, our "plan" for the QB position has blown up. We have to A) find a new plan, or B) attempt to calm the waters caused by the turmoil of losing (replace Moss and Porter and shore up the OL), and run the same plan again.

I haven't seen anything from Walter or Brooks this season which causes me to say that either one should be our long term guy. But I'm also not confident enough to say that either one had the circumstance where they really had the opportunity to prove themselves.

But what Brooks is saying proves one thing. This offense has been completely disjointed. We have 11 different people on any given play, simply attempting to carry out 11 different assignments, at varying levels of effort. This unit needs some glue, and the best glue is QB glue. We need a field leader to take charge.

For me, alarm bells went off when the team elected Moss as team captain.

8:32 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...


I made a suggestion earlier, which I believe worthy of consideration. The Jets signed Patrick Ramsey last off season, intending that he would start, as they were losing faith in Pennington. Pennington stepped up to the challenge. If you look at his yearly stats you can see that he never really had the opportunity to settle in at the position, although he has played fairly well and pulled several games out in the fourth quarter.

I'm sure that he'd want to get out of NY so that he'd get another chance to start, and NY would likely let him go for one of our WRs.

I have no great commitment to him, but picking him up would seem very reasonable to me.

9:21 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

With a bevy of top QB's available last year in the draft and through free agency, we signed Aaron Brooks, for better or for worse. Well, it was clearly worse. Personally, I never saw Brooks as more than a stopgap to get to Walter or some other FA QB by 2007.

The fact is, despite the O-line problems (which are immense by any measure), Brooks had opportunities to win games. Instead, he is O-for-infinity in his life as a Raider.

I don't believe Brooks is a winner, with any offensive line. How many of us really think that our record would be 2-12 with Rich Gannon playing QB? Guys like Rich Gannon, Tom Brady, Doug Flutie (I can go on) find ways to win games, even and especially when other facets of the team struggle. That's largely what separates winners from losers and winning teams from losing teams.

For my money, Walter should be placed back at starting QB, particularly now that he's had time to reflect on his earlier performances. Let's move forward.

10:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


This team doesn't change until we get leaders on the sidelines and in the booths upstairs. Until then, it doesn't matter who we draft or sign in free agency.

It starts and ends with the HC and GM, and we've had one good combo there since Reagan's second term.

10:47 AM  
Blogger TheFreakingPope said...


I've given it extensive thought and I completely agree with you. I think Ramsey would be an excellent pick up. Also, because he isn't readily available through free agency, it would require a trade. We have trades to make.

Give me another month and I'll be sad if we don't pick him up.

11:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh baby! This in from Inside Bay Area Sports. Not only is Curry and Morant starting on Saturday, here is some more good news they give.....
"The Raiders placed receiver Alvis Whitted (wrist) on injured reserve and signed rookie receiver Will Buchanon from their practice squad..."

11:33 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

I'm biting my nails Saturday night. Curry is going to be drawing defenders like flies on sh*t. While this is an excellent opportunity to see what Curry can do in "Moss-like" conditions, the potential of losing our best hope for next season to injury is grave. However, if he shows he can hold up, his position as #1 next season is all but assured.

We should see a lot of single coverage on Morant, so this will give us a good idea of what he can do.

We probably won't see much of Crocket, if he plays at all, so Lee will be the only real option at FB. We'll very likely see a lot of sets with a single running back. Expect a lot of passing.

I saw an article where Brooks was saying that he felt that "most" of the offensive players would show up for the game (nice of them) but several have already cashed it in. Frankly, I've felt that at least a few cashed it in before the season began.

12:12 PM  
Blogger Joaquin said...

Hey man, it's all GOOD!
We all love the Raiders but we have different opinions. IMAGINE THAT!
If I say something that doesn't square with ya, sound off. I'll do the same and somehow we'll figure it out.

1:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone needs to come with a take on why Namdi Asomugha is not going to Honolulu...

1) #2 in the league in picks with 7.

2) 17 passes defensed.

3) Plays on the #1 ranked pass defense

It's a shame that players in Oakland don't get the credit they deserve.

I can understand the fans not voting for Asomugha because that's just a popularity contest, but not being voted in by peers and coaches??? That's a slap in the face.

2:04 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...


It's always seemed to me that players are selected the year after they've had a great season, not the current one.

You'll have to remind me, but I don't think Burgess made it last year when he had a much better year.

There is, however, no explanation as to why Lechler has not been in.

2:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Burgess did make it last year.

I think you make a good point regarding Asomugha. I guess Asomugha has to become more of an ESPN....ummm, I mean household name before he get's in. It's more of a popularity contest, even though I believe the players vote and coaches vote combine for more voting power (maybe 2/3s) than the fan vote.

As for Burgess, since he led the league in sacks last year there was no way he could have been left out now matter how many Al Davis haters there are behind the scenes, pulling strings.

Regarding Lechler, in my opinion he's great and horrible. Great at distance and getting you out of bad field position when you're playing deep in your half of the field.

HORRIBLE on pooch kicks / placing inside the 20.

I can't rembember more than one or two punts all year (out of the many) that were downed inside the 10 yard line, but I can remember many, many times he drove it into the endzone for a touchback.

I think he doesn't make it this year because he wasn't an all around good punter.

Anyway, I'm still a little mystified how the #1 pass defense, and #4 overall in the entire league (in terms of yards) only sends one guy to the pro bowl.

3:02 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...


Glad to hear you're on board. Here's some encouraging news.

The Jets are willing to let Ramsey go. They may just release him. If so, don't expect a quick pick up. The Raiders will wait it out for him to be released, and pick him up without a trade. The Jets only gave up a sixth round pick for him.

3:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to say, while it's true the Raiders do not have a history of drafting Qb's in the first round, we must remember that the Raiders, for a long, long time, were always drafting near the bottom of that round.

Now that the Raiders are getting used to drafting in the top 5 of the 1st round, it may be time to reconsider our past thinking.

Having said that, I will admit, I do not like Brady Quinn from what I've seen.
But, if our choices are Ramsey, Plummer, or some other vet failure, I may take a chance on Quinn.

Also, I wouldn't be oppossed to letting Walter have at it again, behind a new 0-line, with a running game to help him, and some WR's who will make an effort to catch the ball.

4:29 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Raider00: Brady Quinn isn’t going to be the only QB available in the draft. What about Heisman Trophy winner, Troy Smith? I think I’d rather see us pick a RB like Adrian Peterson. From what I’ve seen and read about him, he’s a freak. An earlier poster made the point that he might be injury-prone. Yeah, maybe, but isn’t that what the Eagles said about Burgess? We'll get a chance to see Peterson close up before draft time.

Anon 2:04: It’s a real shame that Asomugha didn’t make it to the pro bowl, but it’s a CRIME that Sapp didn’t either. Sapp had more votes (and better pure stats) than any DT in football, yet he’s not going. From what I understand, there’s the “popular vote” by the fans, then there’s the coaches and players votes. It was the latter that pushed Sapp out of contention. It’s mind boggling to think Sapp doesn’t have the respect of his peers. The guy had another monster year.

6:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Peterson would make alot of sense to me as well.

A backfield of Walter, Peterson, & a blocking fullback, sure does sound nice.

But that doesn't solve the horrible 0-line problem.

Maybe LT Joe Thomas should be the pick. I don't know. There are plenty of holes to fill.

7:56 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

BlandaRocked -
Patrick Ramsey is a QB definitely worth our consideration. Getting Ramsey for a late round pick would be a steal. I wouldn't be opposed to a Moss for Ramsey + draft pick trade. Ramsey, Walter, and a mid round QB draftee would at least be a step in the right direction.

Although I'm torn between Adrian Peterson (RB) vs. Joe Thomas (LT) as potential 1st round picks, I'm leaning towards Thomas. I think it would be much easier getting a RB in the 2nd or 3rd round or through free agency than finding a premium LT through the same means. Also, until we assemble a good O-line, it will be very difficult for our skill players to shine.

9:01 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Understandably, we're all wavering a little on what position is more important for our top draft pick. Obviously, almost any pick is likely to help us out.

Question is, would it be better to have a top flight QB or RB with an average O-line, or is it better to have a top flight O-line with average QB and/or RB?

Maybe I'm still gun shy from the Gallery bust, but I lean toward the skill positions (QB or RB), because you can build a franchise around a top flight QB (or even RB). We should be able to stack our roster with O-linemen in the late rounds and through FA.

Also, I believe a large part of our O-line problem has been coaching, however, one of two things will likely happen to improve that by next year. 1). our inexperienced O-line coaching tandem will simply improve by virtue of the experience they gained this year, or 2). we will hire a more experienced O-line coach. No matter, I believe our O-line will improve despite any additions or subtractions.

6:23 AM  
Blogger TheFreakingPope said...


That is a wonderful Christmas message of good hope and cheer!

I'll keep my fingers crossed.

7:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fellas, lets aim higher than Patrick Ramsey. If he could play, he would have played in Washington or NY. Pennington is a small, weak-armed QB and he has kept Ramsey, a small, strong-armed QB on the bench. Why? Ramsey isn't smart enough to play at the NFL level. We've seen that movie, in fact, it's on right now...

7:08 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

LK - I think we all want to aim high for our next QB but what is actually available is an entirely different picture. Who do you suggest we target? Schaub, Simms, Ramsey, Quinn ... it is not like there is a "no-brainer" selection out there.

7:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think there's one no-brainer out there and three players a notch below 'no-brainer'. I think these are the Raiders best options. My criteria for selecting a QB are: has he won at a high level of competition and has he brought his team from behind to win against good competition. Here goes:

No brainer: Troy Smith--has won vs. the best in college and has brought his team back to win [just like VY and Leinart did]
near no brainers [in order]--Matt Schaub--has won at the NFL level and has brought team back; Brady Quinn--has won at the highest level in collge but not as much as Smith/Leinart/Young; brought ND from behind but has not been huge in big games. On the plus side, knows and plays well in an offense that has been successful at NFL; Matt Cassell [backup, NE]--hasn't won anywhere but I like his head/arm and fact that Pats have confidence in him.

I think we have to go after these guys hard to make sure we get one only because I think it takes a well above avg QB to make it to the SB. I think pursuing the Simms, Leftwich, Ramsey caliber guys is the wrong move. I do like Huard but he's like 35.

8:00 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

LK -

Although I agree with the basic premise of your criteria, I have to question how you could ever consider Troy Smith "a no brainer".

Troy Smith would be a VERY RISKY pick. He is 6'0" and would seem to be the beneficiary of playing for a talented team in a big time program. In a lot of ways he reminds me of Andre Ware or Akili Smith...great in college but failed miserably in the pros.

Matt Casell...are you kidding me? This guy never even sniffed the playing field in college let alone the pros. Not exactly "aiming high".

The rumor in the Atlanta Journal Constitution today is the Falcons trading Schaub + their own 1st rd, 2nd rd picks to the Raiders for the Raiders 1st round pick to ensure that they can draft GTech WR Calvin Johnson.

9:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just my opinion, but the Raiders passing on Adrian Peterson would be like San Diego not drafting LT with their first pick even though their o-line was also horrible at the same time.

There are some players, if you believe they will be the elite / best at their position, that you just can't pass up.

Lamont Jordan, a decent back when healthy, is not a game breaker. Good o-line, or bad o-line.

If he was, he'd still be in NY, since the Jets knew Curtis Martin was at the end of his career.

There is a lot of speculation that Troy Smith, due to size, will be a mid-to-late first rounder, maybe even top of the second.

Remember, San Diego took LT first, and got Brees at the top of the second.

It seems the Raiders have lots of options (players to trade, draft picks to trade) to maybe get an additionl mid-to-late first rounder.

Maybe it's a pipe dream, but the combination of Adrian Peterson and Troy Smith seems attainable.

Also, we can't forget that Adrian Peterson is only a junior and would have to make himself eligible. He has nothing left to prove at the college level.

Another point that nobody has brought up. Bringing in better skill players could potentially improve the play of the line from a mental / emotional / desire perspective. Confidence breeds success.

The Raiders have invested heavily in previous drafts on defense (especially the secondary) and o-line. The first investment has begun to pay dividends, we should give the second area more time before it's completely torn down and rebuilt.

When was the last time we've drafted an offensive skill position player with the first pick?

9:35 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Anon 9:35 - You make some good points. Why be anonymous?

In answer to your question, the last offensive skill player taken with a 1st round pick was in 1996 ... none other than TE Ricky Dudley. In 1995 we took RB Napoleon Kaufman with our 1st round pick.

Would JaMarcus Russell (LSU) or Drew Stanton (MSU) be QBs to consider in the 2nd or 3rd round?

10:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alright, Cassell shouldn't be in the near no brainer category...I just like the guy and see some potential.

Disagree on Troy Smith, tho. The difference between a good QB and a stiff are the intangibles--decisionmaking, leadership, etc. Troy Smith can make all the throws and to the right guy, he's tough and he wins and has all the intangibles. Ware played in a gimmick offense that has failed miserably in the NFL and played scared when he got there. Akili Smith had zero heart and leadership ability. If you listen to Troy Smith talk you hear the same confident, humble words that came from Leinart and Young. Smith will get knocked for his size but he can play. In two weeks he'll have something else AKili and Andre never got-- a national title. By the way watch and see just how many plays Smith makes--with his head and arm. After Ginn, Jr., OSU's skill people are not that far above average.

If that's a legit trade, the Raiders should make it tomorrow. I doubt Atlanta will be trading anyone until they decide who's coaching down there after they fire Mora.

10:22 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

LK - Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against Troy Smith. However there are 3 points to consider:

1) By most accounts, he is not a top 5 pick in the 1st round but more like a mid to late 1st round pick. (even as late as early 2nd round)

2) There is an inherent risk in drafting just about any college QB let alone a QB who stands 6'0".

3) Doug Flutie would be the best comparison to Troy Smith. Doug Flutie demonstrated heart, won the Heisman, had great leadership skills, was a winner, had all the intangibles etc. but that didn't make him a "no brainer" for the NFL.

If the Raiders are able to trade down and/or aquire an additional 1st round pick to go after Troy Smith, that would make sense. To take him with our 1st pick is not a good value. Granted I know how Al loves to go after Heisman Trophy winners ...

10:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm reading the same stuff you are about Smith's draft status. Doesn't matter if he's picked top 5, late first or early second--my only argument is he's a no brainer at QB; many who turned out great have been taken even later. [I also think his draft stock will rise after the BCS, Senior Bowl and combine].

Flutie is like 5'7" in real life which is a hugh difference to 6' even. I agree he had the intangibles but that's too much height disadvantage to overcome. Size wise, here's four QBs roughly Smith's size--Brees, Brunell, Romo, Favre

11:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Calico Jack -

Thanks for the kind words, and good question on being anonymous.

Maybe I've taken on the personality of our offense and I'm just too lazy to create a blogger name.

JaMarcus Russell is a stud. If he declared I could see him moving ahead of Troy Smith on a lot of people's draft boards.

Could he be a better version of a young Daunte Culpepper?

Whether or not he's a better football player than Troy Smith would be up for debate.

I just think some intangibles need to weigh in a littler more on the equation: winner, big gamer, leader.

In that sense, I think Troy Smith brings a lot to the table. He has a good arm, accuracy, and can make plays when everything is breaking down (which, happens all the time in Oakland). His only knock, from what I've seen, is height. That doesn't stop Drew Brees.

Russell's size, arm, and agility (for a guy that size) probably makes him a better fit for the Raiders style of offense.

I would be happy with either, as long as Adrian Peterson is the first pick. I guess you can tell by now that I think he's a can't miss / must have.

If I had to lean one way, I'd go Smith if he's taken at the right spot in the draft.

Either way, I think everyone agrees that taking QBs high in the draft has proven to be a risky business.

Personally, in general I'm tired of all of the gifted athletes who aren't good football players that the Raiders seem to lean towards.

Just like Rickey Dudley.

Yamo (I'll see if I can set up that name)

12:38 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Guys, how can you knock Doug Flutie after a brilliant professional career in the USFL, Canadian League and NFL. I defer to Calico Jack for exact stats, but if you add up all Flutie's numbers from his entire career, the guy is on another planet. Even now you suggest he's too small to play QB in the NFL. Yeah, but his heart is like the Grinch after it grows 3 sizes. He has nothing left to prove. If he played his entire football career with the Raiders, we'd have a couple more SB championships. The guy is a winner, pure and simple.

We'll have several opportunities to study Troy Smith (starting with the BCS) and see if he's the next coming of Doug Flutie. If he is, then it shouldn't matter that he's overvalued as an early 1st round pick, we should pick how our needs dictate, not the “best available” player. However, if trading our high pick for middle 1st round and other picks would yield Troy Smith, than that's like gold.... Texas tea.

All said, I still lean to picking Peterson if he declares. Should Smith's stock fall and he ends up in the second round, we could have a monster draft... sorry, I got carried away... monster draft is an oxymoron in Raiderland.

1:04 PM  
Blogger x said...

Man, what have we come to when we pine after Patrick Ramsey to be our starting QB? That's pretty pathetic.

As lk said, if he hasn't made it in Washington and New York, why would he be a hit here. Oh yeah, maybe because we're worse than both those teams.

Seriously though, I'd like us to aim a lot higher than a journeyman like Ramsey. And don't make comparisons to Rich Gannon....not even close. Rich showed he could play and lead before he came to Oakland.

Please, not Ramsey.

4:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Raiders deny report that Shell will be fired!

By Bill Soliday

The Raiders responded angrily to an NFL Network report Thursday that owner Al Davis will fire Art Shell as coach at the end of the year.

The report, by NFL Network's Adam Schefter, cited a club source as saying Davis was displeased with several aspects of the job Shell has done.

It cited his handling of receivers Randy Moss and Jerry Porter, the team's offense and quarterback situation and that Shell and his staff "have lacked inspired leadership" during the club's 2-12 season.

The Raiders promptly denied the firing allegations.

"Adam Schefter has always been a false rumor mongerer with respect to the Raiders and (is) anti-Raider based upon his relationship with Denver and with Mike Shanahan," they said in a statement.

Before joining NFL Network, Schefter covered the Broncos for the MediaNews-owned Denver Post.

The Raiders' response went on to say that "no decisions have been made relative to the 2007 Oakland Raiders nor will they be made for some time. Schefter could not have gotten his information from a 'reliable source' because there's only one reliable source, and he doesn't trust Adam."

The reference to the "one reliable source" is to Davis. In his report, Schefter used the words "high-ranking official," rather than "reliable source."

At the conclusion of his report during the pregame show before the Vikings-Packers game Thursday, Schefter said, "Now Al Davis has been known to change his mind and could again. But as it stands now, Shell is expected to be let go."

8:18 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...


It's a combination of things. Holidays, and my parents have not been healthy. Just have time for these short posts.

However, PantyRaider, that report from NFL Network. That should be grist for your mill. Didn't you suggest awhile back that a blockbuster rumor ought to be given to the "mole" so he'd be identified by leaking. Seems possible by the Raiders' response. "There is only one realiable source, and that source does not trust Schefter." Let's see if someone gets fired by the end of next week.

Re Ramsey. Ramsey was given the the starting job by Gibbs in Washington, then pulled in the first half of the first game of the season. Gibbs replaced him with Brunell without explanation, and Ramsey never got another shot.

However, he played most of the prior season and played very well. When he has been allowed to do more than come off the bench (which is one of the hardest things to do) he's played very well.

8:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


You know I read a lot of your nonsense posts. I am a raider fan thru and thru, but some of the crap you come up with I really sracth my head in amazement. Are you a raider fan or not.

"Why publish that "crap" here...we can all go and read it in the paper if we want, we don't need your help....try to find some way to express yourself without copping what someone else wrote....NO imagination...."

Really, how much do you read. Cause your posts sometimes lacks the very depth of knowledge.

9:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bless you, son.

5:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh panty,when will you ever learn??? throw out your stats,throw out your what ifs, how ANYONE in their right mind can sit here and write how art has us pointed in the right direction...dude,you are just as lost as this team.... you say to follow into oblivion,thats what real fans can any fan support this???? it is just all so PATHETIC,there is no explaining it,there is no saying there are pluses,the whole freakin thing reaks of go ahead and support pathetic,you are not helping... you are supporting a losing way... any real fan that has the teams best interest at heart will say,THIS SUCKS,LETS GO IN ANOTHER DIRECTION BECAUSE THIS IS JUST ONE LOSER OF AN OPERATION...there is no "everything will be ok".. it is just a sad time in Raider history and it is sinking further down with every week.. can you not see that not ONE person wants to be here??? can you not see the players hate being here,that their careers are wasting away in a wasteland??? it is all just to pathetic and i will wait for the day of a light in the tunnel and it is far away because this organization will be going nowhere for awhile yet..until then,i will continue to spread the word of CHANGE because this garbage is not acceptable to any real fan who really cares about the Oakland Raiders.

10:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No wins in the division again this year. Next week is our last chance to get a road win.

This is really the pitts.

Still trying to detect some sort of plan in Oakland, but I can't find one. Only the defense under Ryan, seems to have any structure, but even they can't stop the run now.

Thank God this season is almost over.

11:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you can't blame the bad attitude of the WHOLE team on moss and porter,they are just a symptom of a much BIGGER problem and it starts at the top..until that is fixed,it won't matter who we get rid of or we try and get... it's a lost cause and it is not about jumping on or off the wagon,it's just stating a FACT and the sooner our leadership starts dealing with this FACT the sooner it will turn around...but i don't see this leadership facing this fact anytime soon.

9:18 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Listening to Bryant Gumble last night, who talked to many of the Raider players the day before the game, he had a couple of intersting things to say.

The reason Brooks has been so unhappy lately? The players around him aren't trying, and when he tells them to try he gets a blank stare in return.

Shell's fault? I can't remember who the former player interview was, but he said that many players no longer respond to "old school" coaching (i.e., coaches who expect players to work hard at their craft). Their attitude is that they get paid whether the team wins or loses, and whether or not they play well. When they get pushed by the coaches they push back. The was presented to me in a way that suggested that I should just accept that. I don't.

Anybody who is getting paid $350,000 to a couple a million a year has absolutely no business saying they don't want to have to work for a living.

Last night the team was moving the ball well. The defense was playing relatively well. But FIVE TURNOVERS!!! Walter responded to perhaps his last chance this season to impress with TWO FUMBLES and TWO INTERCEPTIONS!

I'm tired of these guys. I refuse to wait for them until they find a coach they like. IT IS TIME FOR A HOUSE CLEANING!

Curry should stay; Fargas should stay; Crockett should stay; Lee should stay; McQ should stay; Boothe should stay; maybe a few others on the O-unit. As far as I'm concerned, they can clean out the rest.

11:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

br.. is it just all the players or does it go deeper????why is it they are so unmotivated??? did they go through college like that??? is it just what they "are"... there has to be a reason that these guys under achieve and appear totally disinterested... what is the cause or why is it we can't get the most out of these players??? why is it that a player comes out of college and joins our team and end up becoming a "problem"....think about that,it is part of the answer to what is going on within the organization.. it is happeneing and there is no denying it.... seems to me that you are on a slow curve in learning what is actually happening to this franchise... it will continue to the point where you WILL have to admit that something is terribly wrong within this organization.

11:42 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Something has to give! 15 weeks into the season and our offense is actually worse. 9 points per game. WOW! We can’t win a game in our division. We can’t win a game on the road. We can’t win a game! The problem is bigger than just players or attitudes. BR: if the O players have become so complacent, then wouldn’t the D players resent them. There’s no visible contempt, just frustration on both the whole team. Fact is, we need to clean house on offense, players and coaches. We need a field general in the huddle and on the sideline to correct this mess.

1:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Raiders suck anyway

4:40 PM  

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