Monthly Archives: December 2011

Final Battle Against the Chargers

Oakland Raiders #20 Darren McFadden

How fitting that the Raiders last playoff hopes come down to Week 17 and our hated nemesis the Chargers.

Raiders have blocked the Chargers from the playoffs on multiple times over the decades, and both teams take pride in playing the spoiler for the other.

I predicted a 8-8 season for the Raiders and a playoff berth riding on the final game of the regular season. I thought that this season’s tough schedule would end up keeping any AFC West team from reaching a double digit winning record, and in that way I was correct.

However, it was the Denver Broncos who ended up challenging Oakland for the top spot, which was a surprise to many of the pundits who were high on the Chargers.

The fact that Raiders are still in contention was to be expected, but ultimately we all know that they should have had this thing sewn up weeks ago. But I am still in shock how Denver was able to go on an unprecedented winning streak with former college star Tim Tebow.

But there is plenty of off-season to talk about these things.  For now our evil Mirror Image the San Diego Chargers are the perfect opponent for our Raiders to end the season on. Both of these teams have great talent at running back that is playing under par. Both have great QB’s who are throwing uncharacteristic bad passes.  Both have defense that suddenly gives up big plays. And both have the ability to win many games that they end up losing.

In some ways SD is our opposite, the epitome of air-heads, shorts & flip flops, beach living. Oakland is blue collar, hard workers, down and dirty in general. Golden boy versus scrappy underdog…

Raiders knocked Chiefs off in Week 17 last year. They said we were playing for nothing, but instead Raiders came in motivated and vicious, paving the way for the Raven easy victory in Round One.  It would be easy to see Chargers coming in and playing strong as well. Raiders MUST give this game their absolute best shot, any sign of weakness and SD will go for the throat.

What we need to see on Sunday:

Raider D must knock the HELL out of Rivers, if he has time to throw he will shred our secondary.

Bush & Jones break through the front lines and run the football.

STOP THE RUN!!

STOP THE PENALTIES!!

STOP THE TURNOVERS!!

All the same things we’ve been struggling with all year. Now is the time to break free from these illnesses and get healthy for the postseason, if we’re lucky, and for the seasons to come.

Everything is on the line and as Raider fans we’ve seen many of these go bad in the last few years. A new age may be dawning and it begins on Sunday.

GO RAIDERS!


Break the Chargers Curse

When Jason Campbell led the Raiders to victory over San Diego last year at the Coliseum, the seeds were planted for a new beginning.

Years of getting abused by the Chargers had taken all the life out of our team, and that win was the spark we needed to show that YES, Raiders CAN compete and can WIN against good teams.

But the Dark Ages of 2003-2009 still linger. We still can’t stop the run. We still give up games in the 4th quarter. We still can’t seem to regularly get 1st downs and touch downs in the red zone. And don’t even mention the penalties

Things that good teams do on a regular basis, Oakland continues to struggle with.

In Week 17, the final showdown with the Chargers is the Raiders last chance to make the jump, and BURY the old days.

If they can take the field and stop the run, stop the drops, and STOP THE PENALTIES, they have the potential to become a team that is a threat to ANYONE in the NFL.

But if we give them all the chances we gave to KC last week, Philip Rivers will make that last minute score to win the game and bring our season to a disappointing conclusion.

We’ve run out of chances, this is the last and final moment for Raiders to fulfill their promise, their potential and regain the pride of a team that DESERVES to win. Once and for all, BURY THE CHARGERS and take back the title that belongs to the Raiders!!!!

Because if we don’t win, Oakland doesn’t deserve to go to the playoffs, and it’s back to the drawing board for the Silver and Black…


Raiders 2011 Week Sixteen: Sweet Revenge on the Chiefs!

AFC Dallas Texans Banner Hall of Fame

After seeing the loss to KC at the Coliseum in person this year, Week Sixteen’s match up had a personal stake for me.

After a season of struggle, I wanted to see Raiders clean up their penalty problem, improve on third down, get the running game going, stop the run on defense and quit giving up big plays. These issues have plagued the team all year, and Coach Jackson promised they would get fixed.
They didn’t…

An ugly rematch of last years overtime game, so many penalties refs were exhausted.

The missed passes, the blocked kicks, the fake kick called back, all the insanity of your average Chiefs/Raiders game.

But Oakland got the win and at the end of the day, that’s all that matters.

This game had Raider fans screaming their lungs out and when KC lined up for the game winning field goal, I knew it was over. But it wasn’t.

Somehow Richard Seymour blocked two kicks and saved this game.

DHB made the catch in overtime to set us up for the field goal, much as Jacoby Ford did last year. And of course Seabass with the clutch kick, sent the Raiders home victorious from Arrowhead.

Seems like every win this year has been down to the wire.
We began this year an average team. We’ve been trying to BECOME a good team.

It hasn’t happened yet. The same problems still plague us. There is still one game left in the regular season to change that and become a GOOD team.  Here’s hoping the Raiders make it happen!!!!


2011 The Season of Testing Final Round

Oakland Raiders Kenny Stabler #12

Split the NFC North 2-2. I predicted that would be enough to win the division.  At this point it’s not looking that likely.

Now coming into the home stretch of 2011, Week One seems like centuries ago.

We’ve gone from surely winning the division, to almost surely not.

We’ve traded first place with every team in the AFC West at least once so far.

We’ve been in first nearly the entire season until the end.

The inconsistency is staggering, not least because of the heights of our excellence when the Raiders play well (awesome game against the Chargers) to the rock bottom (shutout by the Chiefs at home).

If this team was generally bad or good it would be ok, but the spectacular swings of the year have been disorienting.

I predicted a 8-8 season this year in earlier posts. What I didn’t predict is how many times we’ve surged up and down in the rankings this year.

The end of the season has nearly come, and the answers to my original questions about this team remain unknown!

Raiders show every sign of collapsing just as well as they show signs of reaching a new level of play. Palmer last game was excellent, imagine if he spends a few years on this team, instead of only a few weeks. There’s a huge potential there.

Look at our defense last game, standing up on 3rd down, stuffing the run, pressuring the QB and getting the strip sack. Then the collapse. But perhaps with better leadership, this defense could develop by leaps and bounds! The talent is there.

Play like we did against the Lions this weekend and we’ll demolish Kansas City.

But if we play like we we did against Green Bay we will be the next victims of the Chiefs!

All or nothing, this season remains in limbo with all four teams still in contention.

Beat The Chiefs!!!


Raiders 2011 Week Fifteen: And It All Came Crashing Down

Oakland Raiders #79

F the Lions!
We had that game goddam it!!!!
So many great plays made by both offense and defense.
A heartbreaking loss that destroyed what was left of our season.
I’ve lost the ability to keep taking logically about this team or this game.
The emotional roller coaster has been a absolute nightmare to ride.
Watching amazing passes, catches and runs by our team. Not allowing sacks, but 1 out of 9 on third down.
Great defensive stops on 3rd down, QB strip sack and TD, HORRIBLE penalties, giving up 2 TDs in 5 minutes, this team is ripping my heart out!
This blog was meant to be a place for me to discuss this team and the games they play.
I’m so traumatized by the ups and downs I can’t even compose a post anymore.
This is my second full year as a Raider fan and it feels like an eternity.
My brain is melting down WE SHOULD HAVE WON THIS GODDAM GAME!
ONe of the best games we played this season how the hell did we lose!!!!!!
Bottom line, this team is still underpreforming. We should have 10 wins now, even with screw ups.
We hoped Hue Jackson could turn it around in one year.
That was too much to hope for.
I promised playoffs, and every logical analysis showed I was right.
NFL has no logic! Only madness and chaos and hopes and dreams destroyed.
The final pass over McClain’s head to a wide open Calvin Johnson was the final kick in the teeth for us, I couldn’t watch the rest.
It’s going to be one hell of a long off season….


Raiders 2011 Week Fourteen: Packer Debacle

A sure loss for the Raiders, but it turned out to be worse than expected. A brutal defeat at the hands of the best team in the NFL, perhaps the best team in football history.

Oakland Raiders

This game exposed the Raiders worst faults: Inability to stop the run. Horrible penalties. Terrible WR’s with DHB dropping the first three passes that were right in his hands DESTROYING our first quarter. Interceptions thrown by Carson Palmer. Run game weak without McFadden.  Lost McClain on defense wandering in circles.  Patriots burning our corners with impossible passes. Our guys dropping easy passes.

The most classic moment was the Tuck Rule.  Raiders CRUSH Brady to the ground, strip sack leads to a fumble return for a touchdown. Then the tuck rule calls it back, cancelling the play. Except that there is a penalty on the play so the Packers end up with a NET GAIN in yardage after getting clobbered. Only the Raiders!! This after Packers clearly run out of bounds on the kick return but the replay machine was broken.  It was fixed in time for the tuck rule tho!

I will be the first blogger on the planet to call out some good points from the game:

Four sacks on golden boy Rodgers, who was a d-bag and refused the offer of a hand to stand up.

Safety SACK in the endzone by McClain, dam that looked good.

Another touchdown for Kevin Boss.

Another running TD for Mike Bush.

Palmer threw some beautiful passes that bounced right off of DHB and Murphy over and over and over and over.

O line blocked well and we only gave up one sack.

Finally, this was the best team in the NFL. Next week we will bring these lessons with us and play a much better game at home against the Lions.


Patience, Pride and Poise: Raiders Won’t Break!

Oakland and Los Angeles Raiders Jim Plunkett #16

As season of testing in the AFC West. A brutal schedule filled with lots of difficult, physical, challenging games against teams who had become accustomed to beating us.

But Hue Jackson’s Raiders have performed under pressure, and has broken a list of streaks that were holding us back. Revenge on the Jets, Texans, Chargers, and a split with the Broncos.

Now comes the final stretch of the season, with more injuries and more tough games on the horizon.  We knew the season would be one of frustration and hardship, not the easy road for a rookie Head Coach and his newly assembled team.

The NFC North are some of the toughest teams in football. Raiders took on the challenge with the knowledge that to become the best you must fight against the best. And here comes the World Champions.

Raiders got to 7-5 against all odds, overcoming more deaths, penalties, injuries, and general misfortune than any other team. And it has made us stronger.

Raiders have been first in the division or tied there for nearly the entire season.

This is happening for a reason! These are the growing pains of a team being tested, beaten, battered and pushed with their back to the wall. Every great Raider team of the past was forged this way!  Through pain and suffering, pushing the limit of their skill and stamina.

Unlike some demoralized teams of years in the past, 2011 Raiders are going straight at the best teams, ready to face the consequences of injury and losses, frustration and self-doubt.

From testing comes growth. From frustration comes fortitude, mental toughness and self-confidence.

This team has been pushed to the breaking point.

The final 4 games of the season will determine once and for all if the Oakland Raiders collapse under the strain, or stagger in to the finish line broken but not beaten.

I do not claim to know who will conquer the AFC West. But the team that does will have the greatest heart, strength, courage and spiritual will to win…

OAKLAND RAIDERS!!!!!!!!