Sunday, December 28, 2008


Seeing Jon Gruden's and Monte Kiffin's faces at the end of this game was priceless. Bravo to the Raiders offense, and even to Caveman Ryan and crew for a largely stout performance on defense. 

Perhaps Michael Bush will finally get some carries in 2009? Bush now has three touchdowns on 95 career carries, very few of which have come near the goal line. Meanwhile, Fargas has just seven touchdowns on 700 career carries. 

With a smart draft, solid executive and coaching hires, and an avoidance of boneheaded free agent signings (in the vein of DeAngelo Hall and Javon Walker), we just might be able to do something with this end-of-season momentum. 

Monday, December 22, 2008

Nice But Not Enough

Nice victory over the Texans. Suddenly it's rainbows over Oakland. 

But I'm sorry, I'm not expecting to find a pot of gold anytime soon. Don't be lulled into the warm cocoon of lowered expectations. A sixth-straight season of 11 or more losses is not a major sign of progress under any circumstances. 

Tom Cable needs to go, at least back down to the role of line coach (nothing personal here, I'm just not convinced he's head coach material and I'm no longer in a gambling mood at the head coach position). Rob Ryan has earned a one-way ticket. Clear the decks. Hire a capable GM and coach who have an existing relationship, give them the power to hire a staff and run the draft, get out of their way, and give them three years—no exceptions—to turn it around.

Tangible, forceful change is no longer an option, it's a requirement.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

First Few Minutes Take

Not only do we mob the receiver for pass interference, he still catches it. Then Russell fumbles, and then L.T. shuffles untouched for a touchdown. It's already getting embarassing, and we've got 55 minutes to go. Time to man up, Raiders. 

Postgame Take: Clearly, Bill Callahan was right after all.

Monday, December 01, 2008

The End of The Beginning

Well, that was a killjoy of a game. So much for momentum. So much for getting geeked up against an AFC West rival at home after crushing one on the road. So much for beating a team that had lost 19 of its last 20 games. So much for pride and poise. I was there, and it was much more pathetic than the score suggests. This team is literally sucking the blood out of the Coliseum. Failure is now the expectation in the stands and the culture on the field. No urgency. No energy. No nothing.

I'm all for changing things up, but what, exactly, was Janikowski going to do once he got that pigskin with 10 yards between him and a first down? Janikowsi got as many touches in the first half as McFadden got in the second half. Think about that for a second and try not to smash something. There's changing things up, and then there's insanity. This was the latter.

I keep hearing that Russell is young. Yes, well so are a lot of quarterbacks (Ryan, Thigpen, Flacco, blah, blah, blah) who don't overthrow every receiver, and who don't wear fur coats and sunglasses to press conferences. Please play (and train) like a star, then dress like one, not vice versa.

The defense doesn't get a pass, either. Exhibit A: Gibrill Wilson dropping a pass. Blitzing? Why blitz when you can get carved up like Thanksgiving leftovers? The toughest thing about Rob Ryan right now is his hair.