Monday, 19 October 2009


All that I wanted was some pride, for my team t0 play as a team and some under achieving players to finally give a damn.I didn't really expect a win against the Eagles either, but it just goes to show what can happen when a group of players finally grow a pair and decide that enough is enough.It's only one game, but its a start.The difference from the team that played the Giants and Texans was night and day.

The biggest difference in the game was the DEFENSIVE PRESSURE!!!!

The RAIDERS were blitzing from the Eagles first series and kept it coming, and what a breath of fresh air it was.Maybe , just maybe Al has allowed John Marshall to do his thing, lets hope it continues for the rest of the year, we shall see.It was noticeable too, in a week when there were questions about the RAIDERS having any leaders out there, Ellis and Seymour were vocal and led by example, which sparked other players on the defensive unit.The loss of Nnamdi Asomugha in the early part of the game could have affected them, but the much maligned Stanford Routt came in and played well, and should have had an interception return TD to his name, chalk up another TD wiped off for the RAIDERS that would have stood for any other team in the NFL, Maclin tripped over his own feet and we get interference called?, and tag on a 15 yarder thrown on an irate Tom Cable and the NFL lackeys were doing their bosses proud.

The play of the defense also seemed to stop any panic spreading to either the offense or into the stands, and it helped that the inability of the RAIDERS offense to get anything going was for a change not on JaMarcus Russell, but more to do with those young receivers and missed blocks.The players heads didn't go down, and it was noticeable from the off that something was different around the team.Antonio Pierce could have done us the biggest favour in the world with his comments last week, and as a fellow RAIDER fan maybe that's what he intended.

That spark from the defense was seized upon on the Russell to Miller TD.The hustle shown by Louis Murphy on that play to throw two blocks made up for his earlier culpability in the Asanti Samuel interception, Murphy is football player, and that is what the RAIDERS need to start to change the mentality in Alameda.I think that there are players who deserve mention this week, who made a difference, who set an example to be followed.

Justin Fargas is not the best running back in football, he's not the best back on the roster, but he is a warrior, and he is a RAIDER.

JaMarcus Russell showed us something this week,it wasn't mind blowing by any stretch of the imagination but it was better.Whether that stems from the criticism he has had the last couple of weeks is hard to say, I even saw him pump fake for gods sake!He still likes to throw high or into coverage but he played with more focus than he has shown so far.

Richard Seymour is a beast.He and Greg Ellis seem to have decided that they are going to be the leaders of that defense and possibly the team.Someone had to step up and these two guys aren't used to being the butt of jokes around the NFL and it showed this week, long may it continue.

Zach Miller is basically the RAIDERS passing game, and it is to his credit that he still gets open so often.

Gary Russell may be a difference maker in the passing game, giving his namesake another option in getting the ball off quicker.

The keys to this win were simple really.The defense played with intensity, the O-line played well enough to give us a run game, and Russell was a serviceable QB this week.That basic formula took us past the Eagles, it may be enough to give us a chance in a few more games down the line.
Kudos to Tom Cable too, in a week when things were at an all time low, somehow he got his team together and turned all the negative energy around.
It's only one week, but in a season that was deteriorating into farce, it's something for the RAIDER NATION to savour.The challenge now for Cable is to maintain the momentum, and for the Marshall defense to play to the benchmark set this week.
No one is laughing at the OAKLAND RAIDERS this week, and it feels good.


Danna said...

I really like your comment about the defense not letting the panic spread. Haha It's nice to show pride in wearing my Raiders gear to work. Speaking of pride, seems like Seymour and Ellis found some, thank God. I loved the aggressive play of the D, and we do have enough weapons on O to make this a solid team. This is a great step. A banner day. I hope they can tear Sanchez up this week, and JR can hit some receivers..did you see his "run and juke"? Good stuff. I'm just breathing a little easier and I hope the players are too.

Leighraider said...

The aggressiveness on defense was fun to watch Danna, hopefully uncle Al will let John Marshall keep the pressure coming.Sanchez seems to have hit a rocky patch and hopefully we can take advantage of that.Nice to know you can wear the Silver and Black to work for a change too.

Calico Jack said...

An aggressive, blitzing D that mixes in zone coverage ... what a novel idea. The game of professional football is effort, execution, and strategy. Obvious goals of any D worth their salt is to (a) put pressure on the QB by any means necessary (b) to keep the opponent guessing, on their heels by not being predictable (c) above all, defense needs to be played with aggression and passion in order to dictate the terms of the game.

I sincerely hope that Marshall continues to push the buttons to an aggressive D and does not back off.

"Turn the DOGS of war loose!"

Danna said...

Hey Leigh, how do you feel about us passing on the trade deadline? As for sporting our colors, I actually work at the TV station that airs the 49er joke. So not having to defend them this week was like Christmas. Although, I did hear on ESPN, which had the Miller TD run as the number 2 NFL play of the week (woot woot!!), this quote: "The Raiders, who sometimes play as a semi-professional football team......." arrrggghhhh!! We need to put together a couple more wins here to combat that thinking. Shilens will be back though, apparently..cheers.

Leighraider said...

I don't think that the Raiders had anything to trade with.If you believe what is being said they contacted all the other teams and said excluding Asomugah and Russell who do you like?Obviously they didn't like much, plus we would need the right players to be available too.You never know with Al, but I wasn't expecting much so I'm not disappointed.Nothing went on elsewhere of note either, so we didn't miss out on anyone who would have made a difference.