Tuesday, 25 September 2007


Browns 24 Raiders 26!!!!!!!

Last week I hated Mike Shanahan even more than I hated him the week before that.This week I hate Mike Shanahan more than two weeks ago but not as much as last.And that's the first time I've hated Mike Shanahan less.
If the crispy faced one hadn't pulled that late time-out in Donksville, I doubt that Lane Kiffin would have done the same thing to Cleveland on Sunday night.So as Coach said thanks Mike, and let that be the last time that those words are uttered, ever.The fact that the Raiders used the same tactic to ice a kicker so successfully probably means the rules will be changed for next year.
We shouldn't have had to rely on the beautifully massive hand of Tommy Kelly connecting with a football.For the first time we got a lead, which could have been bigger but for miscues in the redzone, and once again we couldn't stop a team when we needed to.
But one thing the 2007 Raiders can do is RUN BABY.Hello NFL, we are going to run at you and around you, and we'll laugh as we conquer and run, sorry.The line, even Cornell 'False Start' Green, should be praised for what has occurred so far at the line of scrimmage, strangely the Raider D line raises more concern than the former Silver and Black turnstiles, and whatever LaMont Jordan has been putting in his tea I want a bag of.The running game should, in theory, become better with the imminent addition of Dominic Rhodes after the bye week.With the Fishy people of Miami allowing in the region of 166 yds per game on the ground, while possessing a stingy secondary, it would be safe to assume that Duante will be asked to keep giving Jordan the rock.If the Raiders secondary can tighten up a 2 - 2 record going into that bye is a distinct possibility.
When the divisional games next week are played out, we could also have a tie for the AFC West lead, with a chance to stick one up Norv next time out.
If you're a glass half empty type then we squeaked past a mediocre team at home, needing a blocked FG to win it and couldn't stop a late game drive again.If your Guinness is half full we have half as many wins as we had all last year and its only week three, no-one is laughing at us anymore while Raider football is capable of smacking you in the mouth again, and the division rivals all look weaker than a year ago.Hoorah!
And sod it we won.
On to Miami, with a win lingering in the minds of a team that just maybe needed to win that close one to change its fortunes at last.

Random thoughts from this weeks game :

Coach Kiffin, you still need to get some Black in you, sorry on you.

Mike Williams needs to be allowed to play with a ball specifically manufactured for giants, he is catching something with the relative size of a ping pong ball or Philip Buchanon's head.

We have the best Middle linebacker in the NFL.

Sometime soon, Lane Kiffin/Greg Knapp, and Rob Ryan are going to coach a good game at the same time for 60 minutes, and when they do someone is going to be on the end of a hammering, San Diego would be nice wouldn't it?

Can he kick it, yes he can.Seabass is hopefully back.

Ron Curry deserves to be a number one receiver, and is a true RAIDER.

The King is dead, long live the King.Daunte Culpepper looked good after he came into the game, and whatever is said about Josh McCown he has some heart, but it all felt that bit better with #8 around.

Whatever is said about the state of the Raiders D this year, and we all have seen something of a dropoff, the team we held to 24 points on Sunday put up 51 the week before.

Nothing to do with our game, but someone has to stop the Eagles ever again wearing that throwback uniform, I thought Disney had fielded a team for a minute.

If Derek Burgess continues to struggle with his injury, can we put JaMarcus Russell in at DE?We do need to rediscover a passrush to help out that belaegured defensive backfield.

The coaching staff are making players accountable for their performances from the week before, hence the playing time for Stanford Routt over Washington and B.J. Ward spelling Schweigert.

Thursday, 20 September 2007


ITALY 2006...

The grand old lady of Italian football, Juventus, are found guilty of match fixing.The punishment for which was the stripping of their last two League Championships, and relegation to a lower league where they had to start the following season on minus thirty points, the equivalent of an NFL 0 - 10 start.

ENGLAND 2007...

Leeds United who have already fallen on tough times following relegation from the Premier League to the second tier of English football, slip into financial adminstration, which effectively means they have done a bad job running the club purse strings, and the English Football Association effectively seals their relegation to the third tier of the English leagues when they impose a point deduction of 10 points as administration is against the rules.The following season when the club is seen to be still in contravention of administration guidelines they are given a 15 point deduction to start the year with, the equivalent of an 0 - 5 NFL start.

THE WORLD 2007...

After found to have been spying on their rivals Ferrari, ooh does anyone see the similarity there, the Formula 1 governing body impose a fine on McLaren of $100 million ( that's a one and two noughts and then a load of other noughts), and strips them of all the points that the team has earned through the current season.

The common thread here is that the ruling bodies of each sport has not messed around with sending out a message to the sport it governs, the fans, and the wider public.They are saying that rule breaking or downright cheating is going to be dealt with severely, and those who do it in the future know what to expect.Even when the infraction was away from the field, you are going to get f*@#$d - hard.

U.S.A. 2007...

New England Patriots found to be cheating to gain an advantage on the field, caught red handed, no attempt to deny it, well that would have only made it worse since it was so obvious once the confiscated video tape showed exactly what they were up to.NFL commish Roger Goodell shows that he is prepared to come down hard on any rule breakers or cheats, well unless you are the apple franchise of the NFL's eye that is, and lets face it the sport really needs to concentrate on the scourge that is spiking footballs and celebrating touchdowns using the ball as a prop, now that's important.Well done Rog, you show 'em, the games image is safe in your hands.

Monday, 17 September 2007



There are shitty ways to lose a game and then there was last night at the stable, sorry Invesco field.Sebastian Janikowski had made up for last weeks crap by nailing a 52 yd winner, the RAIDER players were running around the field, I was running around my living room, Kiffin's headset was off and the beaten men in orange CFL uniforms were finally put in their place and everything was right with the world, well for 20 seconds or so.
I have seen many time-outs called to ice kickers before, but I can honestly say I have never seen the officials hold up their arms to signal a good FG, after a play has been fully run by both teams, to then be told sorry it doesn't count.I saw the footage of some Bronco calling the T.O. but it didn't show exactly when it had been made.Old wonky eye reckons he got it called 2 seconds before the snap, and if that's the case then that's savvy coaching from an experienced NFL head coach I suppose, its definitely another reason to add to the list of reasons to hate Mike Shanahan, but I'm still convinced that A) If Seabass' first attempt had missed the time-out wouldn't have been charged to give us another shot and B) If the T.O. call was 2 seconds before the snap surely the play wouldn't have got that far ?All that said if Seabass had hit the second one we would have the victory we deserved.

There are stats that stand out after the game :

Lamont Jordan : 25 carries 159 yds 6.4 ypc.
Josh McCown : 8/16 73 yds 1 TD 3 Int.

This says to me that we should be happy with what Tom Cable is doing with that OL this year.We should be happy with Lamont Jordans effort so far this season, and I have never been a fan but fair play to the guy.And it is getting hard not to wonder what Daunte Culpepper would offer with that extra arm strength and experience, not to dismiss McCowns obvious determination.It's just that with the erratic first halves from weeks one and two from McCown coupled with horrible looking stats starting to mount, its easy to speculate how things might have been when we have been in both games late on regardless of this.

At least we are now looking like an NFL team as opposed to last years debacle, but it would be nice just to win one again, especially having tasted the feeling momentarily last night. And lets hope that the Cleveland Browns' greatest show on turf is a one week wonder, please let it be a one week wonder.

Final thoughts on last nights T.O. Job then.
Kirk Morrison is God.
Thomas Howard is as well, hey we are all Polytheistic around these here parts.
I hate Mike Shanahan.
Lane Kiffin still needs to wear Black.
Shannon Sharpes face is as big as a wok, nothing to do with last night but true.
On-side kicks make people look really bad when you throw one in there with 5:28 left in the third quarter.
There is a win coming, don't know when or where, but its coming.

Thursday, 13 September 2007


Can you imagine the world of the NFL rookie relating to the world that the average fan inhabits.

You do well at University, you are at a good level with your studies and it looks like you will be able to make a good living at your chosen profession.Then, out of the blue you pull off some brilliant finals results, beating people that were viewed as better students all along.All of a sudden your worth in the marketplace is sky high.

One of the top 32 companies in the world in your chosen profession then gives you a salary that surpasses anything that the top people within that company is earning, or for that matter, has ever earned.This, despite the fact that you rang in on your first day to explain that you were going on holiday for a few weeks, and not to worry because the induction course had given you some idea of what to expect.

You sit with your feet up while the rest of the employees go off on a series of team building weekends and then call to say you will be in on Monday, or maybe Wednesday.When you arrive at work, you get asked to do a tele-conference with the industry media, all the employees tell you how pleased they are to see you, regardless of how much work they've put in to the company for years for a fraction of your wage, and you get employee of the week award.Then you get a few weeks to ease yourself in to your new job, you might have to get some people a coffee in the morning and be the butt of a few workmates jokes for a while, but you can laugh about it on your way to your new home in your new car, while you plan your next shopping trip to the designer mall.Oh and if it turns out that you are shit at your job, its ok because the company has to pay you what your owed.Brilliant!

Just kidding JaMarcus, welcome to the Raiders at long last.If you are as advertised then this last few weeks will be a long and distant memory when you are leading future Raider teams to glory.As I said a few weeks ago the Nation will not forget this quickly, you will have to prove yourself, but even the most sceptical fan will be hoping that you do just that.

Monday, 10 September 2007


The expectation inside the Coliseum could almost be felt on this side of the pond last night, the Nation was ready, unfortunately so were the Detroit Lions.The end result in the win loss column was the same as opening day last year but the Silver and Black of 2007 offer some light in what has been a very long tunnel of late.
The shut out of the first half was painful to watch, in as much as the Offense were alternating between the good, the bad, and Seabass.This is surely the last year we can put up with the lottery that is a Raiders FG attempt.McCown looked tense and alot of passes seemed to be underthrown, Jordan was , well, Jordan.One good run followed by a run straight into a linemans backside, and Ron Curry was class again.The reaction from the stands was unfortunate for the team in one respect, but understandable considering the frustration.I too was calling for Daunte at halftime, but to be honest the half time numbers showed that as well as the Lions had played on Offense, we were neck and neck and a little more composure on third down here or there could make a big difference.
The second half saw McCown play with more confidence and the drives were well called by Kiffin and to be honest at 21-20 I thought we had the game, we had the momentum and the team was pumped, one stop by the D and that was it in my mind.But Mike Martz was not reading the same script, and the Raiders D never looked like stopping them from scoring, but I was confident that we could mount one last drive to sneak it, because their D had looked tired and the OL had been giving McCown time to throw.
It wasn't to be, but I'll tell you something I never want to see Lamont Jordan turn his back on a block ever again, which is what he did on the play that resulted in the turnover which effectively ended the game.Jordan is not a favourite of mine, but I had seen some good things during the game from him so was prepared to turn over a new leaf with him, but that play summed up why I didn't like him to start with - HALF ARSED ATTITUDE, simple as that.We may not have gone down the field and scored but that non-block was terrible, and I have seen it three times now and it gets worse.
I am still fully IN, and we got beat by a team that were better than most of us expected, but I think that realistically we should be looking for progress this year, and lets face it 7-9 or so would be that, the Kiffin era has just begun and he will be learning with each week and we should remember that.The Chiefs are bad, the Donkeys didn't look particularly great either so divisional respectability is a good possibility.Its onwards and upwards to Donksville, and you never know what any given Sunday will bring.

Tuesday, 4 September 2007


A mention must go to St. Michael of Hayward this week.Our good freind Mike has been helping us with our ticket buying this year to avoid the usual Ticketmaster lottery.The Texans tickets safely in the bag, Bears tickets to come and the itinary is complete.
Nice one Mike, you know we appreciate everything, and we look forward to the hours of drunken rubbish to be spoken in Ricky's.


The round of cuts this week threw up a couple of surprises.Quentin Moses and Kevin Boothe being those couple of surprises.
Moses of course was a third round pick, and although his stock had fallen due to a lack of production in his senior year, he was widely considered a nice pick in the third.Indeed, during camp Captain Caveman Ryan had referred to Moses as a "superstar".This all pointed to what most would think a roster spot and a practise squad place at the very least, in fact we all thought a roster spot was a certainty right?wrong.
Since the Moses cut, the reaction of some of the RAIDER NATION has been nothing short of hysterical.Looking at some message boards you would think that we had cut Burgess or Sapp.The play of Tommy Kelly and Jay Richardson this pre-season, and presumably the ability of both Chris Clemons and Tyler Brayton being able to offer added value on special teams, sealed Moses' fate.The criticism that cutting such a high draft pick shows that someone was at fault in the drafting process, is one that can be tempered with the fact that a No.5 pick in Richardson has looked the real steal.
Boothe was probably, and I say probably as its the best reason that I can come up with, a victim of the new blocking system, and the entirely plausible scenario that has McQuistan, Carlisle, and the newly moved and hopefully invigorated Gallery being a better fit in that system.
The two cuts that had tinges of disappointment here were the ones involving Donivin Darius and Peter, sorry Eric Frampton.Both were hitters but due to injury coupled with age on Darius' part, and maybe a lack of NFL speed and smarts as a DB in the case of Frampton made them expendable.The play of B.J. Ward probably didn't help them either, having a great pre-season and showing a liking for the hit himself.
Zack Crockett wasn't too much of a surprise, when you consider Justin Griffith's abilty and familiarity with the system, not to mention his age, and Oren O'Neal looks like a powerful blocker and is younger still.But good luck to ZC and hopefully he can get picked up somewhere, as he was a popular RAIDER with fans and teamates.
The full list of waived and released players is as follows :
FB Zack Crockett, SS Donovin Darius, TE O.J. Santiago, DT Josh Shaw, OT Chad Slaughter, WR Alvis Whitted
TE James Adkisson, C Jesse Boone, OG Kevin Boothe, LB Kurt Campbell, DB Marquice Cole, S Eric Frampton, WR Carlos Francis, P/K Tyler Fredrickson, DT Anttaj Hawthorne, WR Chris McFoy, DE Quentin Moses, LB Kyle Shotwell, DE Dave Tollefson, OT Mark Wilson.
Practise Squad List :

LB Jon Alston and WR Jonathan Orr,WR Chris McFoy, C Jesse Boone, DT Josh Shaw, DE Dave Tollefson, and OT Mark Wilson.