Sunday, September 14, 2008

Arrowhead Goes Mute

Pride and aggression were the ingredients for victory today. I take back everything I said last week. Not. Monday night's shameful exercise deserved every possible ounce of fan repudiation and outrage. In fact, I believe that the Raider Nation's collective voice contributed to the wake-up call that fueled today's performance.

Do you recall all those Haters who said the Raiders blew it by drafting McFadden because of the team's supposed depth at running back, including the joker last week, highlighted by Calico Jack, who said that McFadden had the look of a bust? Funny how an injury-prone Justin Fargas coming off a solid (but by no means astonishing) career season and Michael Bush coming off no carries qualify as massive depth to the Haters, who apparently will only praise the Raiders' talent when it supports a larger Hater talking point.

Well, Darren McFadden shut more than a few pieholes today, and not just in Kansas City. And with Fargas injured once again, the logic of drafting of McFadden is now as obvious to the rest of the world as it always was to us.

Prior to the start of the season, I said I thought it was funny that so many folks were saying that the Raiders are the worst team in the AFC, and even the NFL, when the Raiders aren't even the worst team in their division. Today proved me right, and the Hater World View just got cloudier.

But if I wake up tomorrow to learn that Kiffin has been canned (in the wake of widespread speculation saying it will happen), my world view will be cloudier, too. I'm not going to stress about it tonight, because the media have told us a lot of fairy tales that haven't come true. But if they're right about this, I'll be singing a different tune. What species of bad judgment would we be dealing with to find ourselves in such a predicament in week three, following five straight years of bad judgment and equally bad football? Well, I'm not going to worry about that tonight. Tonight, we are 1-1, and anything is possible.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Had me worried for a sec but it all ended well. Back to back against KC on their own home turf !!!! Let's do it again in Buffalo !!!!

1:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vict'ry Haiku

Arrowhead Vict'ry
Feels good after woeful week
Don't think just enjoy!

2:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Megamonster Haiku

McFadden and Bush
Two headed megamonster
Running over foes

2:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice to have some explosiveness on the O. McFadden was definitely the right pick.

Funny how when the D blitzed we were able to get stops. SOB needs to keep pressuring all year, that is why we spent all that money on DB's.

In the long term, I am still frightened that Al, will fire Kif before the end of the season. Russel needs continuity so firing Kiff is the last thing we need.


2:18 PM  
Blogger x said...

Ryan obviously removed his head out of his arse this week and decided to use some nice blitz packages. Maybe he heard the fans?

Raider D was obviously helped by Kalimba coming back at RDE (rookie Trevor Scott looks weak) and Burgess playing much better at LDE. Mostly, though, the Raiders were fortunate to be playing against a very weak offense with a QB carousel.

Of course, if Ryan's game plan was like last Monday's, we would have lost to this team as well.

Most concerning are the rumors that Kiffin either has been fired or will be on Monday. Please say it ain't true.

(Note: A little disappointed that Gannon and his announcer mate don't know the rules on the touching of a free ball on a punt. They were critical of Tony Stewart when he was the guy that knew the rule...once the punting team touches the ball and doesn't secure it, it's free for the opposing team to pick up an run with it. It's like a free play. Even if they fumble, the ball comes back to the spot where the punting team touched it. C'mon Rich! I guess he didn't pay attention to Special Teams rules.)

2:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Definitely an improvement over last weeks' terrible and yet horrible showing of how to play pro football.

Kiffin's win today will not ease Al off his backside anytime soon nor the media. It only will happen if Kiffin is able to get the team into the bye week 3-1. I do think Kiffin will be replaced mid season if there is more of the same kind of play during the Denver game at home; and if Kiffin uses the media to tell them how much he hates Al Davis' control factor. Kiffins play calling was better as well as his clock managing skills.

D Mac had a solid game. Finally a RB with skills. I am concerned about his fumbling habits. But overall nice job. M. Bush looked good too. Like the change up. J. Russell's footwork needs to be improved. He threw off his back foot, while running too much. 'He never set into the game like he did last week. Though his clock management skills are improving. Kinda of over threw Curry a few times, but Curry needs to take notes from Z. Miller. That kid is great. I like him a lot and he catches everything. Offensive line played a helluva game. J. Defilippo needs to work on J. Russ footwork more this week and get him to set into his drop backs.

Defensive finally stepped up. Hall played ok. He still got burned again. The front four provided more pressure and everyone played their gaps well. Nickel coverage needs to improve though if not next weeks game against the Bills T. Edwards will have a field day with our secondary. I also liked the Blitzing.... we need more of it.

Watching Al on TV, he is old... but it was great watching him say F*** during a camera close up while he was pissed about the last play before half time.

Next week will be the next test. They Bills aren't that great. But the D has to pressure T.Edwards or we will be torched again like Culter did to us on opening day.

Mr. Duva

4:43 PM  
Blogger Toni said...

Completely off topic, but I'm watching the SD/Denver game and I have no love for Turner and the Chargers, but they've absolutely gotten screwed on two major calls this game.

It's not fair that San Diego lost this game. They won it, but the refs gave it to Denver. And I rarely think that.

There were some highly suspect calls. If I was San Diego I'd lodge a complaint against Hockaly [sic] and Denver. It's one thing to make a mistake (as he did at the end of the game) but to have technical difficulties so a play cannot be replayed is unacceptable. I mean, why can't they just use the television feed?


4:45 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

To the journalist from Sporting News who said before the season started that McFadden would be a bust ... CJ "How do you like dem F'n apples, you hack!"

This high paid scribe said in effect that McFadden lacked the lateral quickness, agility, explosiveness, and physicality to be successful in the NFL.

21 carries for 164 yards, 7.9 YPC
Run DMc should the big play capability that we were all looking forward to:

Runs of 21 yards, 50 yards, 19 yards, 24 yards, and 24 yards. That is 5 carries for 138 yards.

5:04 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

First impression when I saw Howard streaking through their O-line for a sack.... “are you F’n kidding me?” Where was that last week??? It just seems so obvious!

Having Edwards back made a difference in our base four getting pressure. And Warren actually showed up for this game. Hopefully, he’ll be there next week when I go to Buffalo (yes, the trip is still on).

Urgent - we need a new flanker. Curry should be benched.

Seabass sets career mark. Kudos!

RunDMc and Bush... what can you say that we didn’t suspect? These guys (and Russell) are the Raiders’ future.

Russell showed his inexperience today, but he didn’t hurt us. Two weeks, no interceptions (one lost fumble, though). He just needs some WRs.

Hall actually pressed on some plays, but still played soft on many others.

The national pre-game show tore the Raiders apart, stating they are “by far the worst team in the NFL.” I guess they were wrong.

The chargers got hosed by the officials on a fumble recovered by SD to win the game. They gave the ball to Denver, who scored a TD to come within one. With only a few seconds left, Shanarat went for 2 pts and the win, instead of 1 pt to tie (at home). Bizarre!

5:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

we'ver VERY lucky they didn't get a pick6 on the first play of the game, that would have sucked.

That was the same play JR flubbed in the denver game.

Gameball goes to the O-line 4-sure.
Was it just because KC's D-line is so young? I'm concerned what Gunther is going to turn those kids into in the next few years.

5:24 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Oh yeah, honorable mention to Tyvone Branch (interception, wearing a cast) and Mario Henderson (LT). Russell did not get sacked, and the TV coverage showed several plays that Henderson was a beast in run-blocking. It would be a huge boost if he could unseat Harris as starter.

5:29 PM  
Blogger RaiderRealist said...

Today was a good day. We won on the road after that Monday night nightmare. San Diego lost to Denver and is now in our rear-view mirror. They got screwed on some calls today but remember, we got screwed on that spiked ball last year in San Diego. Things even out in the end. Maybe the rest of the league will catch onto Hochuli's act now that has happened to their darling Chargers. No pity for San Diego!

5:42 PM  
Blogger RaiderRealist said...


You had a question about the fine over the socks? Its one of those NFL rules about the uniform. The black portion should be from the knees down to the calf, then white from the calf down. Sounds silly, but you know how the NFL is about its rules.

5:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Big test next week against a pretty good lookin Buffalo team. We shouldn't change much as far as game plan on either side of the ball.


6:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's hope nobody gets fired and nobody opens their stupid mouth all week. Back to business now.


6:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah big 'ups' to Henderson and McFadden, as well as the entire defense for stepping up.

This was a bitter/sweet win. Bitter because we all know we're in for a very long season given our coaching situation. Kiffin's post-game comments sounded like a man who, despite having just destroyed a rival on the road, obviously has much 'bigger' things going on in his head.

Kiffin has checked out of Oakland mentally. Al's fault or not, for this reason I think we just need to call it "dysfunctional" and end this relationship once and for all. If nothing else for the sake of salvaging what remains of our 2008 season.

If Al is simply waiting for Kiffin to walk rather than fire him then that just tells me the old man cares more about money than winning games.

How do you continue this way with a coach who is actually TRYING to get fired? I was as big a Kiffin fan as the next guy but if he were taking shots through the media towards me this way I would've fired him already if I knew what was good for me. Especially when the team shows up to games unprepared, as they did last week. Hell, there were some strange things this week too which should never happen on a football field.

So enjoy the win as I did. But my glass is no longer half full. We're in for more pain and disappointment. This was only the Chiefs, afterall.


6:47 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Can Al, Kiffin and Ryan all kiss and make up now?

It's amazing that a head coach could be chastised in the media (and by the organization through a press briefing with the DC) for characterizing his DC’s defensive game plan as passive in week one, only to be proven right in week two. Imagine the nerve of that head coach.

Some mediots suggest insubordination on Kiffin’s part. I’m sorry, I just don’t see that. His candor is his M.O. and probably responsible for lighting a fire under some passive game planners..., who shall remain unnamed.

7:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this was a great win, but with our head coach in limbo, how can we enjoy it.

mcfadden really stood out, as a new star was born for oakland.

no matter who the hc is, this is going to be a long, tough year because of the weak passing game.

jruss is clearly a very raw, work in progress.
we won't win many games with our qb connecting on only 6 passes every game.

it might be wise to bring jruss along a little slower, and to give andrew walter some snaps.

good to see rob "zombie" ryan emerge from his deep freeze.

repeat after me rob, qb pressure= winning.
good, now don't forget.

8:35 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

The Raiders executed on the key elements to a successful Sunday:

Stop the Run. KC 55 net yards
Run the ball. 300 yards
Create QB pressure. 5 sacks
Protect Russell. 0 sacks

This was a "pride" game. After getting massacred on MNF, the team played an aggressive, purposeful brand of football.

Kudos to Kiffin who called a great game and kept the team focused on the task at hand.

Kudos to Ryan who dialed up blitzes and put his players in the position to dictate the terms of the game.

Kudos to Mario Henderson. 1st start in the NFL, on the road, in one of the most hostile stadiums played very sound football.

Kudos to Run DMc. A star is born.

Kudos to the dynamic duo of Morrison and Howard who blitzed effectively, played the run stoutly, and made a key INT (Morrision).

Kudos to the DLine for stonewalling LJ and getting after the QB.

Did Kiffin stir the pot by stating the lack of QB pressure vs. Denver? IMO, no. Why all the sensitivity over a HC stating the obvious?

8:43 PM  
Blogger Raider Raza said...

Hey X,
I noticed that too. Shame on you Gannon you should know better; i sure did.

9:04 PM  
Blogger Raider Raza said...

My Take on the Kiffin situation:

I think Al values loyalty over any other quality which is reflected in the number of Raiders still in the organization.

More importantly, the Raiders operate different than other clubs. AL is uniquely qualified to be coach, owner and GM and has had much success, while Kiffin is an inexperienced, unproven coach who's biggest asset is being chosen by Al as a potential coach. He has won 25% of his games. He needs to shut his mouth and earn his stripes. He has done nothing. Al has forgotten more than Kiffin knows.

Al has always been paranoid and demands secrecy, and Kiffin doesn't know how to shut his mouth.

There's stuff you don't talk about in front of the media. Kiffin is talking too much and i don't know what club values talking more than action...

Raider Raza

9:07 PM  
Blogger Raider Raza said...

I ignore mediots but i heard Ryan for myself.

I think Al is pissed. The Raiders don't normally let their coaches talk to the media like Ryan did.

I see James Lofton as interim coach and maybe Tim Brown or Fred Biletnikof come onboard as WR coach.


9:15 PM  
Blogger Doobie said...

IMNSHO, McFadden should start from here on out. It's clear that starting Fargas is just going to result in perpetual mediocrity. After McFadden's first big run I started to get excited about his presence on the field since I began to understand that lightning could strike at any moment.

As for Kiffin, he doesn't seem to understand that he's in a win-win scenario. The entire NFL knows his situation, even before his comments last week. If he fails, it'll be because of Al Davis. If he wins, it'll be despite Al Davis. He's already toeing the line with borderline insubordination. Assuming that a decision to fire him hasn't already been made he needs to keep his mouth shut the rest of the season. Don't worry Lane, everyone understands what you're going through. Just suck it up and you'll be fine.

9:41 PM  
Blogger RaiderRealist said...

Here's a little something to take your mind off of the drama unfolding in Oakland. Courtesy of a Chiefs fan who goes by the screen name Len Dawson:

"Did anyone just hear that??? Lamar just rolled over in his grave. I can never recall being so embarassed as a Chief fan. What hurts the most is that hairy bastard Bob Ryan and the Raiders, of all teams, are the ones that made it look like we just climbed out of a cold swimming pool in front of a bunch of women."

At least we can sleep good tonight knowing that Chiefs' fans are feeling how we felt Monday night.

9:52 PM  
Blogger H said...

Lost in th shuffle is 90 yards rushing by Bush. Yes, it was late in the game against a tired Chefs DL, but that's exactly what was planned for him according to preseason talk.

Now, as much as I don't like saying this, the Dolts got screwed. The only thing that keeps that game from being ranked with the Snow Job is it wasn't a playoff game.

Someone tell me how that wasn't a fumble. Also, the Gelding's first TD came off a non-fumble fumble. Technical difficulties on a review???? There was no backup system????? That was not a fumble. Champ Bailey pulled the ball out after the receiver was down.

Now, you have all heard me rant on Ed Hochuli and his crew. Now, in a game where we hate both teams, you can see why. His entire crew should be suspended for three games.

And, what is the NFL Director of Officials going to say this time, "Well, the blown calls (note there were multiple) had nothing to do with the outcome of game. If San Diego had scored two more points they would have won."


4:59 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

When asked about the effects of Kiffin being fired, Nnamdi Asomugha had this to say:

"It would be crippling at this point in the season, yeah, since we've only played two games. I think it would hurt us a lot. We're just starting to gel and starting to do things well, so I think that would kind of mess things up. I hope that's not the talk. Is it?"

To fired Kiffin now would be
self-destruction, even from the players perspective. Al, what if he promises to keep his mouth shut about "the ownership?"

5:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

x said, "Raider D was obviously helped by Kalimba coming back at RDE (rookie Trevor Scott looks weak) and Burgess playing much better at LDE. Mostly, though, the Raiders were fortunate to be playing against a very weak offense with a QB carousel."

That is what happens when you blitz linebackers x. It frees up Burgess and Kalimba/Scott from being double teamed by the O-Line.

Jason Jones, and J-Mac have reported that Kiffin was to have a meeting with Al Davis in KC last night. Jason Jones took it further by stating that Kiffin probably won't show up saying that if Al wants to fire him, then fire him, he doesn't want to meet about it. We could know as early as today what transpires. Yesterday's game looked like more posturing for Head Coach by Rob Ryan.

This next week against Buffalo is going to test our running game. But I believe if we come into this game like we did against KC, we could walk out with a victory.
We have to stop Lynch, and pressure Edwards. They have a lot of passes out of the backfield like we do, so we need our Outside Linebackers to play well on the screens, and blitzing pressure from the Morrison/Gibril/and the corners.

Offensively, we need a few more play-action passes to Miller on the seam, and we need Curry and Walker to actually catch a pass this season. We know our running game is there, we need to compliment it with an average passing game. Right now, we have a below-average passing game.
Just Balance, Baby!

6:18 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Point of clarification to Raider Raza:

Kiffin has won 36% of his games not 25%.

8:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ummm.... what was that i said about fargas being a "porcelain doll"?

well here we go again folks. we're gonna change coaches, and the circus continues (cue in the benny hill music here).

kiffin's as good as gone and he knows it. lofton will step in and completely destroy this team - OH WAIT - AL HAS ALREADY DONE THAT HASN'T HE?



8:44 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Kiffin is reportedly meeting with Davis this morning. I'll tell you what that conversation will be about.

Andy Walter can hand the ball off for considerably cheaper than JaMarcus Russell. We brought Russell here to throw the football. A little more than 50 yards passing is not acceptable. You can't run a one dimensional offense in the NFL if you want to win on any consistent basis.

The idea that Russell will get killed with this o-line doesn't wash. In two games, even one where the opposition knew Russell had to throw, Russell has only been sacked twice. The O-line is doing it's job.

For those who bothered to read Ryan's rant, regarding the blitzing, he says that you don't blitz when the offense goes into max coverage and brings the WRs in close. And this is for obvious reasons. The WR can break past the blitzing man very quickly, and if the QB hits him, it's off to the races. Denver continually used that formation in passing situations which is how Shanahan stifled the blitz.

Now, I don't let Ryan off the hook for running a press on one side of the field, and a zone on the other. That is what put Hall constantly out of position to make a play. I think Ryan, also, was the first DC (and likely the last after this weekend) to underestimate Royal. In spite of the defense looking better this week, it is, after all, KC.

If Kiffin doesn't refuses to balance the offense, he'll be gone no later than the bye. If Ryan's defense looks like the Denver game against either Buffalo or SD, Ryan will be gone by the end of the season. If Kiffin is fired, he'll be replaced by Lofton, and Knapp will call the plays as the OC.

I doubt Davis will fire two coaches during the middle of the season. But Lofton is an excellent leader and could likely minimize the damage regarding a departure by Kiffin.

But regarding anybody getting fired - aren't we hearing this from PFT, which usually gets its information from Mike Lombardi?

9:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yesterday we had a glipmse of the runner that did many of the same things in the SEC that Emmitt Smith, Bo Jackson and Hershel Walker did. I belive McFadden even pased those greats in yardage during his career... and that was during a period when the sec was fairly tough. People will regret passing on him in the draft. A legitimate homerun threat for us, finally.
Kiffin's treason after the bronco debacle paid off in spades on D. That was not Al's style on display Sunday. That was the coaching staff. Now what will Al do? Let's hope he'll be rational, but can we really expect that? He'll probably fire Kiff and then KC will grab him up just like the broncos did shanny.

9:32 AM  
Blogger H said...

Since this is the only day I'm going to be able to participate this week, I'm going to throw a big bomb.

The team that played on Monday night was a very poorly prepared team. Offense included, and who is in charge of the offense? Kiffin.

Kiffin has said over and over that he knew what he was getting into when he took the job. If that is so, why all the public whining and complaining that is attributed to him. Did he think by the sheer power of his personality he was going to go in and change things to his liking?

Right now this team could use a major infusion of leadership. Kiffin needs to have the testosterone to roll his sleeves up, go in and have it out behind closed doors, or quit.

Saying Al Davis doesn't keep people very long is totally counter productive to getting the team ready to play. If you win he will keep you around. If you don't, he won't.

Some of this head butting would be a lot more palatable if Kiffin was winning. So, lets start winning first.

Now, on another subject. Rich Gannon said one of the problems is Russell gets the ball to the receiver too quickly and they are not ready to catch it. What???

At LSU he had a 60% completion rate. It's the receivers that need to step up and catch the ball when he hits them in the hands. Miller doesn't seem to have any problem. Did anyone ever hear someone saying that about Marino?

Catch the damn ball if it hits you in the hands.


10:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just got back from KC, had a great time (with the exception of a knuckle dragging, obnoxious fat-fuck asshole KC fan sitting next to us us, that almost got into a fight with ANOTHER KC fan because the good Samaritan told him to either go home or stop bothering us.. kinda funny!)

A few takes from the endzone view:

1. JRuss needs to run the ball occasionally to keep the defense honest... there were two obvious plays where it was wide open for long yardage (one for a TD) and he instead stood there waiting for a WR to get open... some of the Chiefs fans behind us even noted this. He could have walked in for a score and instead we settled for a FG.

2. If Asum. doesn't make the pro-bowl this season, there is something wrong with the selection process... the guy makes a ton of plays that don't show up in the stats sheets.

3. As soon as we got in our seats my buddy said we might see Jani set a record... it was blowing like 40 mph straight behind us. I was hoping for the NFL record, but a Raider record is very cool.

4. I don't know if you could see it on teevee or not, but JRuss kept waving for his receivers to break down field as the play broke down and they all just stood there with their thumbs up their ass... a lot of those incompletions were on the WR's, IMO. Plus it appeared that JRuss was drilled into simply pitching the ball away after 3 seconds no matter what... so that isn't on him either. I don't think we will see much from him this year until we get some pass blocking linemen.

11:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Raza and Calico:
To clarify your mistakes KIFFEN IS 5-13 for 28%. Why don't you get your numbers right.

12:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When has 'keeping things in the locker room' helped out the bumbling Raiders organization? Maybe back in the old days, but not since the '90s and certainly not in this decade. Therefore, Kiffin did the right thing by making the Raiders mess public and say it big and often.

Keeping things quiet only contributes to maintaining Davis' decrepit dignity. It does absolutely nothing to make changes for the better.

I think the current FO/coaching mess has, at best, made yesterday's victory rather bittersweet. Had our FO/coaching have been stable, we would easily have looked forward to the next Sunday. But instead, the most we can mumble ... 'Doh! When'll da axe finally do its thing? What then? More pukin' coaching mess? Very excited -- yay!'

If Kiffin gets sacked, then I hope to see him getting a job offer from a rival organization and humiliate Davis for years, not unlike Shanahan.

12:27 PM  
Blogger Toni said...

Thank you to everybody who gave me info regarding the sock scandal.


I was watching the game with my sister and we both noticed, and truth be told we both thought it looked really cool. So much for that.

1:02 PM  
Blogger Toni said...

Bittersweet indeed.

I guess we'll find out in the next few days what is going to happen with Kiffin. I really hope Mr. Davis does the right thing and not fire him. Lofton may be a wonderful coach, but it will just add to the chaos surrounding the team. Nobody wins in that situation. I don't care how good Lofton may or may not be he's still untested, he's still never been a HC and it puts us back at square one. The Raiders desperately need some stability and firing Kiffin at this point, would serve no useful purpose and be counter productive - if Mr. Davis honestly values winning over ego.

It's a shame, because I think Mr. Davis' legacy is going to be remembered more for what the Raiders have become than anything else. The coaching carousel, the losing, the rumors. There is no denying his impact on the NFL. The NFL is what it is today, in no small part because of him. But unless the Raiders can stop this downward spiral, that legacy is being, fairly or unfairly, irrevocably damaged. A hollow echo of former glory.

As for Kiffin knowing what he got into and is now whining about it, I think that's a bit unfair. I doubt he fully understood what he was in for, until he actually started working for the Raiders. I mean we can all speculate what it would be like to work for the Raiders, but until we do, it is all specualtion. I have no doubt Kiffin has the lineage to be a very good HC. I still believe he has the ability to turn things around for the Raiders, if properly motivated. But if he's just biding his time until he gets his pink slip, then unfortunately we're screwed. And I have no problem with forcing Mr. Davis to fire him - and pay him.

One last thing, I saw the conservative calling during the Chiefs game as a function of two things: 1. the running game was working and 2. it was Russell's first game on the road. I'm sure the offense will be more balanced as the season progresses.

1:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bottom line is this. Until the day Al drops dead, and I will hate to see that day, there is only one type of coach who can win here.

The coach must have no interest in determining who he works with and who he coaches. All he does is come to work and coach, working with what he's given.

Does anyone know what John Madden is doing these days?

Hell, Al tried to get Howie to play in the 2002 Super Bowl, might as well try!


1:08 PM  
Blogger RaiderRealist said...

Just checked out for some news on the Kiffin front. It doesn't sound good.

Silver & Black Report is saying Rob Ryan will be named HC by Wednesday. We shall see.

1:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ryan as our next coach? this is a guy who's had the worst defense in the league the last couple of years?

way to pick another winner al! great!

1:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lets just hope Kiffin doesn't end up on the Chiefs and terrorizes us for the next 15 years. It's going to be tough to come up with nicknames and learn to hate him. We better get started!


1:58 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

I have to say that as much as I've hated a lot of what Ryan has done on defense over the last four years, I think it's possible he would make the perfect Raiders HC.

Ryan's best quality, and this is backed up by every player on defense, is his leadership. And as H says, that's what we've been lacking more than just about anything. And if you consider the history, the best Raider coaches have always been the best leaders. The reason Shell failed in his second stint, more than any other, is that he'd lost the ability to communicate effectively with the modern players.

Mike White was so quiet you almost didn't know he was there. Bugel lost the respect of the players for being too big of a yes man. Gruden was a good leader and very effective. Calahan was a back stabber. Turner was never there. Kiffin has no maturity (much like Shanahan).

Ryan would become the team leader, Mardindale the DC, and Knapp would remain (at least this season) as the OC. And making comparisons between Kiffin and Shanahan are apt. Shanahan was as big an ass as Kiffin is being even though he's obviously a talented coach. But on the positive side, I think it would have a similar effect to when Shell took over from Shanahan. He immediately put life in the team, and the players worked hard for him.

I keep seeing indications that Kiffin is beginning to lose the players. If he loses the players, it's over anyway.

2:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ryan's best quality is that he'll do a good job shining al's helmet. just like trask, otto, white, bugel and so on down the line.....

waiting for the axe to fall....

2:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


rob ryan would make the perfect raiders head coach, because no one else would hire him.

that is his best quality.

2:22 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Grades for the game are coming out. An A for everything but the passing game, which got a D. I guess the D must be for Davis. Since it was poor, it must have been Davis running it. Since the defense got an A all the way around, I guess Kiffin must have taken over the defense this week.

But about that D in the passing game, I guess you can only control what you can control. I here Ryan and Davis meet regarding the passing game every week.

3:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ryan's team would basically run through a brick wall for him. Now if we can just get them to be in the right position when they do it, we've got a chance.

If Ryan is the guy, we need to have top-notch coordinators on both sides of the ball. I assume Martindale would cover one side. And hopefully Knapp's phillosophies mesh well. I hope we don't get away from zone blocking later on.


3:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hard to say from the outside what the right way to fix the current situation is. I certainly do see holes in Kiffin's leadership ability, and question his decisions in speaking to the media about things he apparently doesn't have the balls to speak to "the owner" about. I wouldn't be surprised to see him fired, and I'm not sure that I would entirely disagree at this point. You sleep in the bed you made. Fix it now, and you might sleep better tomorrow. Wash the sheets and you might even wake up feeling refreshed -- ok, not sure what that means, but anyway....

Regardless of whether I agree that firing Kiffin is or is not the right thing to do, I will say that if it comes to that, promoting Ryan to HC just might be the best way to make a difficult situation better. Ryan does have the players behind him. He is a leader of men. He seems to know how to walk a line between Davis and the players -- I don't believe he would be Al's errand boy, as some seem to indicate. Although his defenses have been questionable at best, that is not necessarily an indication to his ability to run the team. Might even be better off because someone else likely takes control of the defense in the mean time.

3:41 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

I stand corrected "Mr. Anonymous". I will get my math straight as soon as you get some steel for your spine.

For the Record:
I have officially reached my final straw with all of the anonymous posters. To post anonymously means 1 of 3 things; you are either lazy, stupid, or spineless.

3:46 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Calico, when you and I disagree, I appreciate the challenge of your perspective. You deal in respect.

But with all of our disagreements over the last couple of years, I couldn't agree more with your last comment.

3:50 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

It might me interesting to note that the two reporters insisting that Kiffin will be fired today are Timmy Kawakami and Nancy Gay.

3:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I apologize for posting as anonymous. I do it because I forgot my password and am too LAZY to get another one. But I do post my initials at the end so you know who I am.

After yesterdays win I have an empty feeling... nothing else to say.

Well... I guess I do have something else to say. I knew at the end of last season that Kiffin would not be in Oakland in 2009. He might be a great coach, but we will never know. My feelings about Ryan or Lofton getting the job-- they will be good soldiers and nothing will change. What really disturbs me about all of this is that no self-respecting legitimate HC would set foot in Alameda. It's a hard pill to swallow, but the truth.


4:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I say hell yeah to promoting Ryan to HC. Atleast this way we get a new DC.


5:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the word from kiffin..... by jerry mac

5:02 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

My comment was not intended for you, Pyscho, Mr. Duva or anyone else who puts their intials, handle, name etc. at the end of their post.

I enjoy our respectful disagreements! Cheers, ":) CJ

5:02 PM  
Blogger Stuporburg said...

I guess I should have taken time to get a Google ID. Anyway ... howdy, everyone. I previously made a post as an Anonymous user, started my paragraph with -- 'When has 'keeping things in the locker room' helped out the bumbling Raiders organization?'

Hopefully the Raiders grab another win vs. Buffalo, in spite of the fine mess known as the Alameda HQ.

5:39 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

I find Kiffin's comments very interesting. Has he been told anything about losing his job - only from the media. Has he been told that management wants him out - only by the media. Does he want to remain the HC of the Raiders - yeah, a lot. Do you get along with Rob Ryan - very well. Were you pissed at what he said to the media - no, after that horendous loss he was asked to go out and say something, and he talked to Kiffin about it before he did.

All Kiffin keeps saying is "I can't control what I can't control." Well, that's true for all of us. I probably use the phrase several times a week in my own job.

But the media translates that into, "Davis is too controlling so I can't succeed, but if he wants me out of here, he's going to have to fire me. Rob Ryan is moron and I'm stuck with him." Amazing how much you can get out of "I can only control the things I can control."

If Kiffin isn't fired by the bi-week, I'm sorry, folks, but the media's been playing both the organization and the Raider Nation like a bunch of saps. It took an opening day blow out to rile the Nation, and the press thus far has milked it for all its worth to turn the organization against itself and the fans against each other.

6:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


when john madden was coach, al davis provided him with the best of everything.
there was nothing madden had to complain about.

has al given kiffin the best players, and asst. coaches ?
not by a long shot.

madden had the advantage of coaching many hall of fame type players.

kiffin gets to lead a bunch of over priced players who have never been to even one pro bowl.

the times have changed.

6:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I agree on the Madden thing. I was only saying as far as coaching personalities go we're pretty much stuck with trying to find the next Madden. It seems nobody is willing anymore to work as a coach the way we need our coach to work.

The times have changed indeed.


7:22 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Picking up from my previous comment, I want to add this. I read Nancy Gay's article. After taking a shower and scrubbing myself with a Brillo Pad, I note one of her comments.

"His fate was sealed Wednesday, when Kiffin told the media that the 41-14 Monday night meltdown against the Broncos happened in large part because defensive coordinator Rob Ryan and the team's owner conspire to exclude him from defensive decisions."

While I apologize for the stench, Kiffin said no such thing. Kiffin said 1) he doesn't control the defense, he leaves that to Rob Ryan and 2) Ryan consults with Davis. Not quite the same thing.

Why is that significant? Because on game day Kiffin calls ALL of the offensive plays. While working for USC, Kiffin only called the passing plays. When Gruden was HC, he called the Raider passing plays, and left the running plays to Callahan. Most HCs have the OC call the offense and the DC call the defense. That leaves the HC to consult with both during the game.

Since Kiffin essentially acts as OC on game day, he needs to be able to consult with the offense while the defense is on the field. Therefore it makes perfect sense for him to leave the defense to Rob Ryan.

Kiffin also reiterated again today that he works well with Rob Ryan. He also said he enjoys being the Raiders HC. To read the press, he can't wait to get out.

Several in the media also reported that the players had no idea that Kiffin's job was on the line, so their effort Sunday was not to support Kiffin's job. You can't convince me that not one player on the Raiders reads a newspaper every morning. Every paper in the Bay Area has been talking about Kiffin's imminent departure all week. And the players didn't have clue? Really?

And yet the meeting was called for last night that was going to have Kiffin out of a job. No meeting last night... Ooops, the meeting was for the first thing this morning. Turns out Davis usually doesn't even show up at HQ until late in the afternoon, sometimes not until evening.

Asked if the meeting occured at today's press conference, Kiffin says he was not asked to attend any meeting. All he heard about any such meeting was reported in the press.

The more I think about, the more I think we're getting played.

9:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


The more I think about, the more I think we're getting played.

And nothing would please Al more than giving them all the finger and keeping Kiffin for a few more years. How could he make them look any more ridiculous?

Granted it's a convoluted way to run a business, but I'd fall over dead right now if Kiffin got fired this year. Sounds like the players want him around, and Al is a players owner. Kiffin sure seemed at ease with the players pre-game on the sidelines.

I dunno. There's always something with being a Raider fan, isn't there?

Can't say any of it is boring.

9:36 PM  
Blogger H said...

Blanda and Calico,

There's nothing wrong with disrespectful disagreements as long as they are respectful.


5:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

VOTE for Kirk Morrison!


6:09 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

You're right, Blanda, it's all coming clear to me.

What a great way to run a team. Allow the head coach to twist in the wind, facing a barrage of unchecked media speculation about his future. Let the media into the locker room to bug the players about it, to potentially unsettle their focus and/or loyalties. Let the fans get upset and confused.

Meanwhile, don't issue a statement, or personally assure the coach that it's all bogus, or walk into the locker room to state the same. No, we wouldn't want to do that, because the game we're playing now isn't Commitment to Excellence, it's Commitment to Playing the Media (and, by extension, the fans). Hooray! What a brilliant plan.

It's just what this team needs to get it back on track, a full-blown media circus, now that's a game we can play and win. Yay!

7:10 AM  
Blogger H said...

The media is part of the problem. BSPN (Brian Bennett) is now speculating about Kiffin being the new head coach at Syracuse.

Sound familiar. This is how it got started last year. The media doesn't have real news, nor do they care about their accuracy. They just make crap up.

But, then again, free speech means the right to lie. At least in the press it does.


8:26 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Haven't we had this exact same conversation before about how lame it is to have your HC twisting in the wind? How detrimental it is to the players' focus, fans welfare, etc?

8:39 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Take, again you're ignoring history. Whenever Davis sends out word that press rumors are bogus, that's used as proof that they are true. Or is your memory span that short that you don't remember.

Tell you the truth, I think Kiffin knows he's not about to be fired. Both Kiffin and Ryan have essentially said at press conferences to the press, "you guys are great professionals, so I figure if you're reporting on it you've got the inside story that I haven't heard."

The two "reporters" absolutely certain about Kiffin's fate are Kawakami and Gay.

Take, I'd suggest you go back through the transcripts of the press conferences by both Kiffin and Ryan. Tell me that Kiffin really said the things that are being reported he said. Tell me that Ryan had no explanation for not blitzing against Denver. Tell me there's no way the players would have known, going into the game on Sunday, that the press was reporting Kiffin was about to be fired.

There is one rule about sports reporting other than analysis. Don't believe ANYTHING you hear unless it happens. Most of the rest is pretty much grist for the Vegas betting line.

8:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if Al responds to this "fresh bs" now, will you call for him to put out the next precieved "fire" the next time some "fresh bs" is served? we went thru this the same thing back in march wasn't it? (starting to loose track with all of these episodes) same thing, media said kiff was getting canned, it went on and on, everyone wanted Al to come out and say it wasn't so. he never did. kiffin still here. now it comes again. the mediots are simply takin every concievable chance to stir the pot and try to get us to unravel. it seems to be workin on some of you.

i believe if people would just read the words in a quote instead of trying to crawl into a guys mind and reading "between" the lines. which is the same as saying, "what i think he meant", but those words are never prefaced, we'd be a hellova lot better off.


9:02 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Blanda, your explanation for all of this is about as flimsy as Ryan's "explanation" of why he didn't blitz or adjust or adapt.

So the Raiders won't respond to all of this because their response MIGHT be misrepresented. They'd rather be actually misrepresented and allow confusion to nibble at the edges of morale and focus.

Some quotes not from Gay or Kawakami, but from Raiders players themselves, per Jerry McDonald:

"Curry used the same phrase Kiffin has used repeatedly when the coach talks about his issues with Al Davis. 'We’ve been dealing with that since March, or whatever, they’ve been going back and forth with it,” Curry said."

“'I’m a new guy coming in,' said Javon Walker. 'I don’t know all the circumstances of what’s been going on. Obviously this is something that’s been brewing even before I got here."

Yes, he used the word OBVIOUSLY. Earth to Blanda. You refuse to use the word dysfunctional, despite the fact that Warren Sapp himself said the place was dysfunctional (don't tell me he didn't, because I heard it myself). What does Sapp know that you don't? What do Curry and Walker know that you don't?

You are playing the role of enabler. You see everything as normal and reasonable and explainable and appropriate. It sounds like a comfortable world to live in.

9:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

let me ask you this, when was the last time you ever heard of a coach gettin canned the day after a win? would the press love this to happen or what? can you imagine the headlines? Kiffin goes against raider way, wins...fired shortly after


9:18 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Calico, I'm sorry, but Kiffin doesn't impress me as a man that is "twisting." At press conferences he seems relaxed, casual, confident, and he seems to be keeping his team focused. At the same time it's being reported that the whole organization is about to unravel.

Do I think Davis is fully satisfied by Kiffin? Not by a long shot. Knowing Davis' tendencies, I'd say that Davis is likely pissed that he's spent all of this money on a rifle armed QB whose talent isn't being utilized.

I don't think that Davis is about to fire Kiffin this week. If losing continues, and Russell remains unused, it is possible that Kiffin will be fired during the season. More likely is that if Kiffin is issued another job by a college, Davis will encourage Kiffin to accept it and release him from his contract. And perhaps that's what Kiffin wants. I don't know. I can't read Kiffin's mind like folks here and the media.

But what I do know is that, going through the transcripts of Kiffin's press conferences, he hasn't dropped any of the "bombs" that the press is reporting. Everyone of those is "reading between the lines" as to what Kiffin "really means." But the press never bothers to ask what he actually means by something he says.

If Kiffin had just said that he didn't talk to Davis on the flight home, the press would say that Davis was avoiding Kiffin on the flight. Fortunately Kiffin added that it wasn't at all unusual, because they rarely do. He has also said that it's not unusual for the DC maintain control of the defense, and that the HC and the DC don't always have the same philosophies. Those comments were absolutely and completely ignored.

9:18 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

From Kiffin:

"He has a decision to make," Kiffin said Monday at team headquarters in Alameda. "It's not my call. You gotta go somewhere else to find that answer."

If there's no trouble brewing, why would there be a "decision" to make? If Kiffin isn't uncertain about his status, why doesn't he have the answer himself?

9:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if davis wants to unleash his expensive and rifle-armed QB, then why doesn't he come down to the field and coach this team himself? he turns on his coaches after they grow a pair - like kiffin. after all, bringing russell along slowly is why we drafted mcfadden - to take the load off his shoulders. he proved that last sunday. besides, who does russell have to throw the ball to anyway?

its just ego baby. this is what this is all about!

9:52 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Take, Kiffin has been told by the media that he's about to be canned, and other than that he hasn't heard anything about it. That's according to Kiffin himself.

Scorpio, you really think that an owner should have no say on how the money he spends is used? You think you can continually win with a one dimensional offense. I guarantee you that there are not too many owners that would be satisfied with 50 yards passing on a regular basis.

10:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can any of you think of another professional sports team that the media intentionally goes out of its way to cause such controversy? And if such controversy does arise, what owner would not immediately come to the defense of his/her coach if the statements made were untrue (esp something as inflammatory as a firing)? I can not, which makes me think that this is not media-induce, but infact coming from Oakland. It just does not make any sense to let this madness go on.


11:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

JF it reminds me of the Yankees in the late 70's and early 80's (I live in NY). The difference is that team seemed to thrive on it's dysfuntional state. My only hope is after seeing what the Raiders did Sun, we will follow suit. After all Al did create the Raiders in the Yankees image. I'm not sure if he had this crap in mind.


11:23 AM  
Blogger Stuporburg said...

We are not that well stacked in the receiver department. Couple that with inexperienced QB. (I would not make him to do too much too soon. He better learn how to adjust to NFL-speed, read opposing D, and and manage games. He can worry about making big plays with his cannon-arm later.) Finally, it will take several more games before the offense learn how to play as a unit. Even then, until we have at least above-average #1 and adequate #2 receivers in the depth chart, I would not expect too much in terms of gaining loads of passing yards on a consistent basis.

It will not take long before Russell has to step up and make something happen with his arm. Just about everyone else out there know that the Raiders offense is heavily biased in favor of running and will defend accordingly.

12:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've made my decision. I'm going to take a 3rd mortgage out on my house and buy that dancing bear.


All I can do at this point is just play along and watch the sad, yet almost comedic season unfold. This is the reason 'Sad Clowns' were invented!


12:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Raiders were NOT created in the 'image of the yankees'.

The Raiders were created as a COMBINATION of the images of the yankees and the Dodgers.
Yankess = Size&Power
Dodgers = Speed&Quickness

Al said this, not me.

12:59 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

This last is true. Al grew up in Brooklyn and loved the Yankees and the Dodger growing up, and appreciated the two approaches. His goal was to combine them in football. That is why he may indeed appreciate the speed of McFadden, but he also wants the "home run" power of Russell.

1:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree, the only other sports team that has this much drama in the media is the New York Yankees.
It would be tight race to see who actually has more, the Raiders or the Yankees. The only thing I think is different is the Steinbrenner's know nothing really of baseball the way Al Davis knows football.
I do think that Mark Cuban takes after Al Davis in that he is a marketing genius, and does things his own way (which is why MLB is not allowing him to buy the Cubs). I would love to see him as the owner of the Raiders when Al goes.....

1:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

kiffin, as of today, is still the head coach.
he watches russell everyday in practice.

he see's how he is progressing with the passing game.
he see's the good, the bad, and the ugly.

kiff also observes the pass blocking and the receivers route running and ability the catch passes.

kiff seems to have determined russell is not ready to drop back and fire off 30 passes a game.

it is not kiffins fault that russell and his agent stalled his career by one full season by holding out and being greedy.

let's let kiffin decide when russell is ready to win games with his arm.

russell will probably get better as the year goes on.
and will be much better next year when hopefully he will have better receivers to throw to.

4:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hate to say it but here I go. This game agaist the Bills is huge for this organization. If we go on the road and beat this team (which I definitely feel is not out of the realm of reality) then alot of the shit we have been dealing with is gonna pretty much disappear. Can you imagine what 2 road wins in a row would do for this team right now?
OK there I said it.


5:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hate to say it but here I go. This game agaist the Bills is huge for this organization. If we go on the road and beat this team (which I definitely feel is not out of the realm of reality) then alot of the shit we have been dealing with is gonna pretty much disappear. Can you imagine what 2 road wins in a row would do for this team right now?
OK there I said it.


5:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ofcourse just as i get all rah-rah I read that Tommy Kelly just got arrested. UnF@#$%N BELIEVABLE!


5:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kiffin calling out Al is very, very taboo. Al hates disloyalty just as much as he hates losing and to this day would take his walker and whip some butt if he needed to.... has Kiffin forgotten that Al is from streets of NY?

Kiffin is daring Al to do what he must. I really, really liked Kiffin but I have lost a lot of respect for him since last week's loss to the donkeys and then his very public displeasure with Al to the media. Look I don't agree with Al on a lot of things as do most of us. But if you want to challenge the owner? Then damn it walk upstairs and tell Al you want an hour of his time and tell him how you feel, make a case in point. You obviously have the balls to say what you feel when your in a press conference. Then it should be no different in front of Al.

If there is one thing I have learned in this world of business is that you must learn to play chess very, very well; if you ever want to succeed and win. Gruden was so good at playing the game of chess with Al. Remember Gruden saying he picked and chose his battles with Al. And Al at times would see Grudens' side of the equation. They never agreed on everything. But boy Al sure respected Gruden for it. It was too bad towards Gurdens last year as HC things fell apart. We should won SB's back to back during that time.

Now that being said, Al is to blame for the Raiders demise. But I thought he would molded Kiffin and allow him to carry the Raiders into the future. Lofton, Ryan, Fassel, Green and any other retread or OC, or even a College coach will not have what it takes to turn us around. It was Kiffin and Davis' plan to turn things around and now were back at stage one again.

When will the drama stop in Oakland?

Mr. Duva

10:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

mr. duva - it won't as long as al lives.

larry ellison should just offer al and fam a couple billion so they'll go away. and take his helmet polisher trask with him!

12:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent post Mr. Duva. Nobody should applaud Kiffin for using the media to take on management. Scorpio, if you think there is any amount of money in this world that would get Al to give up the Raiders you are pipe dreaming. That marriage is "till death do them part".


4:29 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Great take, Mr. Duva.

An interesting excerpt from a Yahoo Sports story, quoting an NFL executive:

"I understand what he's going through, it's a bad situation," an NFL team executive said. "But that doesn't excuse the way he has acted or conducted himself professionally. At a certain point, it's almost childish. When you go to the Raiders, you know it's a bad situation to begin with. We all know that. Now make the best of it.

"You have to have a certain work ethic and belief that no matter how bad things get, you're going to do your best to help the situation. That's crucial in this job because if you expect players to do the same for you and put the team ahead of themselves, you have to do it first."

6:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nope, RT.. kiff had to act like a baby and go public. Otherwise we'd all be sitting here contimnuing the heretofore endless debate on whether Al is meddling and forcing his antiquated ideas on his coaching staff. Kiff is the only coach to stand up and say what needed to be said. It had to happen. With any other NFL franchise, RT, I'd buy your "play the good soldier" thoughts, but not after sitting through this nightmare for the last 15 years... from Shell, to White to Bugel to Gruden to Callahan to Turner to Shell again (writer just vomited)... we sat through this same crap and questioned Al, only to be told by the Al apologist say "How do you doubters know that Al interferes or doesn't let his coaches call their own thing and run their own show?"
Enough is enough.

7:54 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Bama, I don't totally disagree with you. I just thought that the excerpt was interesting, as it shows how others around the league might be perceiving Kiffin. I do agree with the executive's remark that Kiffin's behavior at times seems a bit childish (immature was the line I used). Yes, it may be healthy to have someone like Kiffin finally air out the laundry, but if he's going to do it, then just do it, don't give me the "me and Ryan are still tight" business and the other doublespeak.

8:16 AM  
Blogger Penny Distribution said...

Raiders Vs Bills Haiku

If Raiders prevail
Playoffs call. If not, Kiff's gone
and back to the cellar.

8:24 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Good post, Mr. Duva. However, the more I look at the transcripts, it seems to me that you have to make a leap in order to say that Kiffin is calling out Davis.

Simply saying that Davis controls what he controls, Kiffin controls what he controls, and Ryan controls what he controls is not at all inflammatory unless Kiffin also tells you that that's a problem for him - and he hasn't said that! At ANY time.

He has said nothing in anger, and seems to be almost amused by the rumors of his demise. At the same time, he says he very much wants to stay here because he's excited to see these players develop.

You have to have the ability to read Kiffin's mind in order say that he says what he says because he's dissatisfied with the ownership and the organizational structure.

Kiffin saying that Ryan controls the defense is completely logical, since Kiffin acts as OC on game day. Kiffin needs to consult with the offense while the defense is on the field. While Kiffin is calling the offensive plays, somebody needs to consult with the defense, and that's Ryan. Therefore the game day structure demands that Ryan control the defense.

That Davis controls which players are brought to the team is not inflammatory because Davis is the defacto GM. If Davis didn't do that work, somebody else beside Kiffin still would. Very few coaches are given a dual role in that regard, and Kiffin doesn't have the experience to be offered that big of a work load.

More and more I view it this way. After the Denver Debacle, the press saw it's opportunity to strike and blow up the next big Raider scandal. And thus far, they've been very successful at it. But the spin on what Kiffin has been saying has come from the media and not Kiffin's mouth.

9:13 AM  
Blogger H said...

Ok, if you're saying it's alright for the coach to whine and complain to the media, then it's alright for players to do it also.

And, how many players over the years have we raked over the coals for doing just that.

Gruden did it behind closed doors. That's the way real men do it. The don't go out and try to get themselves fired so they can get the remainder of the contract handed to them. If that is true, and I'm not saying it is, it's petty and selfish and not team oriented.

I refer to the Parcell's model. He worked within the system to change things. Then he got more authority, as did Gruden.

Believe me, I want to be wrong about this, but right now Kiffin looks like a whinner.


9:17 AM  
Blogger H said...


Kiffin looks like a whinner with the way he is being portrayed in the press. (what I meant, not what I wrote)


9:21 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Wow! Not sure if anyone else has posted or referenced this article, but it makes an awful lot of sense to me.

If I had more time, I'd post some of my favorite excerpts. Basically, our primary problem is organizational, not coaching.

9:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great article find NYRaider.....makes alot of sense to me. and very professionally writen without bashing MR. Al Davis and just telling it how it is

1:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


didn't bill parcell's openly fued with robert kraft back in his new england days ?

remember the famous line, "if you want me to cook the dinner, you should let me shop for some of the groceries".

that was not a quiet, behind closed door rumble.

it was two heavyweights, in public, slugging it out.

and i don't remember media darling parcell's being called childish, at the time.

1:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You cannot compare our situation to Parcells or any other NFL situation, past or present. We have an owner that runs the franchise like a dictator, who micro-manages everything. I'll never forget reading once that Al would come down on the field and go over blocking techniques with linemen. Amazing. Kiffin going off on the defense publicly after the Bronco disaster comes across as whining to some on this board but to me it was simply his frustration with trying hard to change a defensive scheme that has been outdated since the early ninties (not being listened to as to how what might work better... and then (Kiff) having to watch his team get drummed with that dreadful defense like it was USC rolling over some division 2 school. It was so painful to watch it screamed for someone to bitch and moan publicly about it. Hopefully Kiff's candid comments served the function of putting a dagger in a defensive scheme that was almost akin to simply throwing the game. I'm sorry but watching that CRAP on Monday football and knowing where it came from (AL) needed action of some sort. And for every one league member that says privately they wouldn't hire him after that there is surely another five that were clapping and would welcome him with open arms.

1:38 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

"I'll never forget reading once that Al would come down on the field and go over blocking techniques with linemen."

Bama7, it's even actually worse than that. I remember reading somewhere (hell, I might even have witnessed it) that Al Davis, sometime in the early to mid sixties, actually came to the practice field and acted like a Head Coach.

4:13 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

According to David White - TWO SOURCES confirm that Davis and Kiffin haven't had a meeting.

Stop the presses!

4:17 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

From McDonald -

“How about when you go for a jog yesterday and you fell like it’s paparazzi because the TV cameras are following you and they’re asking you if you’re still the coach of the Raiders,” Kiffin said. “I felt like Brad Pitt. Anyways, I don’t let it affect me because I can’t do anything about it. I don’t have the power to make the decision whether I’ll be here, so why worry about it.”

When asked about his last contact with Davis, Kiffin said, “No I have not had communication with him over the last two weeks. All I know is what people tell me or what’s in the paper that front office people have informed them that he’s making a decision whenever it’s coming, all the different things that come across each day. As crazy as it sounds, I know as much as you guys know.”

I'd think this pretty much confirms that the only source from which Kiffin has heard that he's on the hot seat is the media. Seems to me that if I were on the hot seat at my job I'd know something about it before it happened, even if I wasn't informed by the guy with the power to pull the trigger.

But the press absolutely confirms Kiffin is almost out the door, even though Kiffin hasn't even heard the suggestion with his daily hours at HQ.

McDonald makes something of the PR department distributing an ESPN article critical of Kiffin. Um, knowing something about these things, that's what PR departments do. They distribute ALL articles from NATIONAL PUBLICATIONS to the local beat writers. The article might just as well have been critical of Davis. It still would have been distributed.

4:30 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Blanda, I'm continually amazed at your ability to retrofit obvious dysfunction and explain it away as normal.

According to you everything's great in Alameda, despite the players' own comments to the contrary, and despite Kiffin's obvious, if discrete, allusions to problems.

You're giving the media way too much credit here. You believe that a credible Raiders beat writer like Jerry McDonald is completely wrong about where things stand between Davis and Kiffin, and you believe that the hacks like Kawakami and Ratto are some almighty unstoppable force, and that the Raiders are powerless to combat this obvious distraction at this crucial time, despite the fact that Mr. Davis could easily clear things up with a few words and a trip to the locker room.

You say: "I'd think this pretty much confirms that the only source from which Kiffin has heard that he's on the hot seat is the media. Seems to me that if I were on the hot seat at my job I'd know something about it before it happened, even if I wasn't informed by the guy with the power to pull the trigger."

Trust me, if you know no more about your job security as some outsider camped a few hundred yards away with a microphone, you ARE on the hot seat.

5:28 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

It's a crying shame that Kiffin is being left out in the cold like this. Conversely, when a rumor surfaces that Ryan might have a hangnail, Raiders HQ sends out an all-points bulletin to the media refuting any such notion.

IMO, the double-standard epitomizes the Raiders’ dysfunctional.

Apparently, Al Davis thinks he’s been harmed in some way by the candor of his young coach – to the point of borderline insubordination – so he is teaching him a lesson, or something...??

It will be very difficult for the Raiders to find success as long as the HC and GM don’t speak to each other. Again, IMO, Davis should either fire his HC or his GM. Personally, I’d go with the latter.

5:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Al's backed into a corner, sort of like he was after the shell/walsh II fiasco. What happens when a crazy dog is trapped in a corner? Probably bites. I hope Kiff survives. Maybe Al will back down and let it die down... slipping off into the background as the season plays out. I hope. I think Rob Ryan could do a good job if he were left alone to work with Kiffin and the rest of the staff. Ryan has two athletic CB's. Put 'em up in the WR's grill and then turn the other athletes we have loose... Huff, Wilson, Howard, Morrison. I'd rather get beat for TD in one play than watch a 10 play 80 yard TD score. Roll the dice and get agressive, don't get back on your heels and wait to react.
As for the O, Russell desperately needs a WR to step up besides TE Miller. Someone that WANTS the ball. No one is hanging in there, trying to get open or coming back to the ball. Curry has to step up. If not I say Ocho Stinko for our Rd 1 pick.

5:40 PM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Take, it's not that I think the Raiders are powerless to stop it, I just think they aren't going to bother because every week it will be something else. Just like last January, and just like March. Kiffin was within days of being fired both times and the hammer never dropped. And both times we were assured, even by McDonald and Jones that it was absolutely real. Pretty soon I'd say somebody has to either take a crap or get off the toilet.

Where you and I fundamentally disagree (and mind you, you've said I'm unwilling to recognize dysfunction and I'm an enabler) is that this team belongs to Al Davis, it doesn't belong to the press, to the NFL, nor to the fans. Professional sports teams do not operate in socialism nor in democracy. They ARE dictatorships, every one.

And in that light, dysfunction is in the eye of the beholder. Folks have been calling the Raiders dysfunctional, even before this last five years. Even in the 1970s and 1980s.

I know you believe that you can read between all the lines, and read every body's minds, and that you can see through walls and fully understand what is going on in Raiders HQ, but I don't believe that I have that ability. All I can is try to put some logic together, and we've gotten nothing resembling logic from the press from the press.

6:01 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

No, where we disagree isn't that the team belongs to Al Davis and that as the owner he has the power of a dictator.

Where we disagree is that while while we both acknowledge that Mr. Davis is the powerful dictator who controls the organization's decisions and direction, he is the last person you hold responsible for the six-year organizational plight of the Raiders.

While I don't hold Mr. Davis entirely responsible for everything, I hold him most responsible, which naturally comes with the territory of dictatorial ownership. This is where we fundamentally disagree, as is evident in our respective comments for many months.

The NFL is designed for teams to go 8-8. If you chronically underperform that median for five consecutive seasons, the problem is upstairs, not with long-fired coaches who shouldn't have been hired in the first place.

6:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

one moment you criticize kiffin; you're practically firing him yourself and are standing at the door at raider hq holding it open for him. the next moment you're analyzing kiffin's words sounding like you're defending him.

you flip flop worse than barry obama bin laden.

now re: this earlier comment of yours in response to my comment: "I guarantee you that there are not too many owners that would be satisfied with 50 yards passing on a regular basis."

you have to remember, this is essentially russell's continued rookie year after not reporting to camp last year. it was absolutely the right move to get mcfadden and kiffin is doing the right thing in holding russell back. i said this before the draft - mcfadden will take the heat off russell so he could learn how to be an nfl qb. do you want this guy to turn out like alex smith/9r's across the bay? besides - even if you unleash him, who's he gonna throw to that can actually get open and catch a ball???????

and when coach al does fire kiffin, just think of how screwed up in the head russell will be when he works with a different HC/OC every year.

6:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blanda trying to put some logic into it, HA, that's funny. See that's where your problem is Blanda, you can't find the logic if it slapped you upside your head. Your vision is so clouded with your dreamy, Walt Disney type view of things that you CANNOT make a logical conclusion. This is where you differ.

NFL teams that are SUCCESSFUL are not run by dictatorship where everyone has to bowdown when the dictator comes into the room. Where the owner DOES NOT MAKES ALL DECISIONS, it is defered to staff that is each hired to do the job.

In successful teams,the HC gets to make MOST of the decisions as far as what players stay, what coaches he works well with and so on.... A GM CONFER'S with his coach on personel, scouts are also involved, they make their input with EACH ONE AS IMPORTANT AS THE OTHER'S. Then you have the GM working with staff knowledgable on the contracts and cap.

Now, as you see, when it is the OWNER who signs the players and "recruits" them, decides who the assistant coaches will be, TELLS THE FREAKIN HC WHO TO PLAY and how to play them. Tells the DC what defence will be run, uses his authority to intimidate his staff into submission.

Are you getting a picture yet? This is reality, you swim in non-reality, this is why you are being taken to task on your views. Session over Blanda, send me a check OK. JONES

7:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blandarocked would probably blame the poor guy in the mail room for the troubles at lehman bros.

look, they'll be plenty of credit to go around if the raiders can ever regroup.

al davis has no problem winning battles against the people he employs with the raiders.
step out of line, and al will swat you like a fly.

that's why yes men/women,(see amy trask), are so entrenched in the raiders organization.

al vs will win.

al vs the other teams in the that's the problem.

7:27 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Blanda takes a lot of hits, but he doesn't go down, to his credit.

7:33 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

I find it ironic that when Davis hired Kifin, some of the key attributes associated with the hire were (in no particular order)

* Kiffin's football knoweldge (as evident with the 7 hour interview, film breakdown, chalkboard exercises during the interview)

* Kiffin's self confidence, moxie, and combativeness ... a 21st century of a young Al Davis at 33.

At times over the past 9 months, Kiffin has "pushed back" on the status quo, pushed a few buttons, and worked extremely hard to rid the players of a "loser's mentality".

It is clear that he wants more input/authority over the players he coaches and the coaches he leads. Some will say that he hasn't earned the right for more authority. Fair enough but is there anything wrong with a HC wanted every possible opportunity to sink or swim with his own decisions?

Lastly, there has been much written about "Kiffin being insubordinate, childish, throwing the D under the bus" yada, yada in reference to his comments after the Denver game.

Here is what he actually said:
Point 1:

In reference to Kiffin's comments following the Denver game, this the question he was posed and his answer:

Asked why the Raiders don’t blitz more, Kiffin replied:

“Well, we talk about it early in the week. Rob (Ryan, the defensive coordinator) and the owner are always in communication. For the most part, I let Rob do his thing over there. He has a belief in certain things and he has a conversation with the owner about that. So, that wasn't the way the game plan ended up the other night.”

A reporter then asked Kiffin whether it wouldn’t be natural to blitz more, considering the confidence the Raiders have in their cornerbacks.

“Yeah, I’m not going to really get into if I was the defensive coordinator, what I would do, because that doesn’t really matter. I’m the head coach. I oversee everything and I control what I can control. Do I have the exact belief we do on defense? No, but it’s hard to have the exact belief that we do.”

Kiffin just witnessed a game where there was zero sacks, zero QB hurries, and zero knockdowns. His quote above is hardly childish, inflammatory, or insubordinate.

One one point, I agree with BR. I have read the transcripts and countless articles with Kiffin quotes, and I have yet to find anything vindictive, detrimental, insubordinate, or careless.

Could he have been more tactful with his answers? Yes but the vast majority of the time he has come across as a professional with the Raiders team's best interest at heart.

8:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Blandarocked reminds me of lee j. cobb, in "twelve angry men".

the last one to see the light, the last one to be convinced.

10:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blanda, I do respect your insight and valued input here on RT. But I agree with Take, Raider Mike, Scorpio and H.

Here's Jerry Mac's scoop.

"Former Dallas Cowboys Jimmy Johnson, who in the past has been a Davis supporter and confidant, was less than complimentary when talking about the Raiders when talking with Fox sports.

“I don’t know that there are a lot of people who would want to work there. It’s a mess and it’s been a mess for quite some time,” Johnson said. “I just don’t know how anybody functions in that type of atmosphere. They do have some good young players and they showed that this past Sunday. I think eventually this team will be one to be dealt with but as far as being a coach there, being an assistant coach, being someone in administration, it really is a mess. I don’t know that there’s going to be a whole lot of people who would want to work there to be honest with you.”

Both Al and Kiffin are to blame for their less than desirable relationship. That's the bottom line.

And most of us want to see this media infested, out of control soap opera end so we can focus on one thing: Winning football games with some intelligent, solid football. To entertain those of us who have paid with hard earned money to enjoy some great Raider Football. The NFL is better when the Raiders are better that much is true.

But now at what cost will Davis appease the fans? Cause isn't that's what it’s about? Because winning and the Raider Nation going hand and hand.

Mr. Duva

10:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmmm, it's weds and Kifin is not fired. Weird.

So how many times does the media have to get the "Kiffin is about to be fired" story wrong before they discount all information about Kiffin being fired?

Myself, I'd be a bit embarrassed about it after like the 3rd time... or at least disclose the source of my shitty information.

10:42 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Maybe Al sees himself in Kiffin and that's why Kiffin is still here.

Unfortunately, it seems Davis could care less about the distraction this is causing his team.

Kiffin should have started out as a waterboy on the Raiders. Then, perhaps he'd get some respect from the owner.

5:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the team played like it did on Monday night both games, I'd agree that the Kiffin/firing debacle might be considered a distraction.. but they seemed as focused on Sunday as unfocused the Monday before.

Perhaps this is rallying the players around Kiffin?

Whatever it takes, I guess.

6:35 AM  
Blogger H said...

As for Russell's continued rookie year, Matt Ryan had more yards passing in his first completion than Russell did against the Chefs.

Russell and Kiffin have had all last season, all off season and all of camp plus the mini camps prior to the pre-season camp of last year. At some point Kiffin has to take the training wheels off.

Right now all we are seeing is a continuation of last years play calling. Playing not to lose even when you are gettin your ass whipped. Kiffin even admitted as much last year, weeks after I complained about it on this site.

Kiffin may be great in the film room and practice, but it's not translating to game day yet. He's still calling the plays. He's still putting together the offensive game plan.

There are pass plays that can slow down the blitz. Quick hits with yards after the catch. Why isn't he calling any of those or at least giving Russell the option to audible to them?

Kiffin is right. He can control only what he can control. I, for one, need to see evidence that he can do something with what he can control. Very inconsistant thus far and it isn't just because of a rookie quarterback. They've been together for over a year now.

Same thing goes for Ryan. He needs to figure out how to best use his personnel on a week to week basis. He said he couldn't blitz because of the Gelding's scheme. Well, not blitzing worked out real well didn't it.

Note to Kiffin, shut up and coach. Playing games with the media was cute at first, but it's wearing thin.

Note to Al, sit down and work things out.

Note to Ryan, see how being agressive can work to your advantage. Don't run the same defense every play and make in game adjustments. It worked against the Chefs.


6:46 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Bottom line, my point is this:

This is the third time in less than a year that the press has assured us that Kiffin is within hours of being fired. Why?

When ESPN reported that Davis was about to fire Shell, the Raiders responded, and the press said they were lying. Shell was subsequently fired - but in that situation, who wouldn't have fired him? I don't believe that the decision had actually been made when ESPN filed its report.

The press said that Rob Ryan would be handed his walking papers before the team returned from their last 2007 game. The Raiders again issued a statement, and that was translated into - it's Kiffin who is going to be fired. At that point, the Raiders gave up responding.

Al Davis allows no access which is the currency news paper reporting. The local press had gotten used to Eddie D. and Carmen Policy, who would regularly meet reporters in Palo Alto bars, buy them drinks, and help them pick up Stanford coeds. THAT is why, according to the press, Eddie D. and Carmen P. could do no wrong - until they both got hoisted by their own petards.

The press has learned that if they can raise a big enough scandal, Davis will be forced to respond. And that is their game - making Al dance. I have over heard sports reporters talking to each other about Al Davis, and this is exactly their mindset. Rile up the Raider Nation - make Al respond!

I'm tired of it. I refuse to play that game anymore. Yes, Kiffin is about to be fired! Just like he was in January, just like he was in March. The press has lost all credibility to me. I'll watch what happens, understand that Al Davis actually has reasons for the things he does, and allow him to run his business. If I get tired of watching them, or the team fails to entertain me for a sufficient amount if time, I'll stop watching.

9:13 AM  
Blogger BlandaRocked said...

Just to add, because I know the argument that's coming - Eddie D. and Carmen P. were not so popular because the 49ers were winning, they were popular because of their ready access. During the 70s, when the 9ers were pathetic and the Raiders were competing for the Super Bowl every year, the 9ers were still more popular with the press, and the controversies with the press were just as prevalent. They just didn't take hold then, because the Raiders were winning.

Simply, if Al Davis does not tell the press specifically what he's thinking, they'll make up what he's thinking. And since this all has developed into an operating meme, most reporters are feeding off each other and not inside information.

9:28 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Blanda, this is a daily fan site, the whole point is to follow the ups and downs of the Raiders, and this is the biggest story out there right now. Kiffin may not be fired, but there is a clear problem brewing, and so it will be discussed and analyzed and followed. If this were 2005, it might be a different story. But the Raider Nation is on pins and needles with the persistent annual dysfunction after five dismal seasons, so it's going to be topic number one until the Raiders take the simplest steps to clear the air.

9:33 AM  

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