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Showing posts from March, 2009

Preseason Schedule Released

For the 1% of us that actually care about the preseason, I proudly post the 2009 Oakland Raiders Preseason Schedule.

Dallas @ Oakland - Jerry Jones gets a taste for one of the worst stadiums in the league before he returns to his shrine in Texas.
Oakland @ San Francisco - Those pansies never like coming to Oakland so we will knock them around in SF.
New Orleans @ Oakland - Ummm, okay, we get to play New Orleans in preseason. I know we are all jumping up and down excited. Last game for the starters.
Oakland @ Seattle - The old AFC West Rivals. Cable vs. Mora. This final Preseason game should be a snoozer.

The NFL Draft is getting closer! Sometimes I think I enjoy the draft more than an NFL game. Then I remember the taste of winning. I admit, over the past six years, that taste is fading from my memory.

Cause of Fatal Boating Accident Revealed

The accident which claimed the lives of three men off the coast of Florida has been revealed. Apparently, the boat's anchor got stuck and Bleakley suggested Cooper use the boats engine to pry it loose. When he did so, the boat went under and capsized.

It is sobering news to what was already a tragedy. If you have ever been boating before, the cable anchors aren't easy to cut loose. Not only because they are expensive, but because the cable is so strong, you'd have to have cable cutters on board.

It isn't easy to pry a stuck anchor. After all, anchors aren't supposed to come unstuck. Giving the cable some extra slack, then slowly moving to a position opposite your drift and trying again to hoist the anchor often does the trick, but we don't know how badly the anchor was stuck and in what manner they tried to unstick it prior to using the boat motor.

It is sad to hear that there was a good chance the accident could have been avoided.


Degrading the Game: NFL Changes Rules

The NFL has banned the use of a wedge on kickoffs. Long kickoff returns are going to die this season and because defenders will be able to get downfield virtually unblocked in many circumstances, the return man is going to be opened up for plenty of big hits, which means this rule will do nothing for safety.

Not to mention, refs will now have another reason to throw a flag, if three players are lined up next to each other within three yards. So basically, teams will put three guys close together running down the field and they can't be blocked because you can't line up three return team players that close together to block them!  How stupid can the NFL be?

The other rule changes just further protect receivers and defensive players from blindside hits to the helmet. I kind of understand the reasoning, but we should protect the sanctity of the game MORE than the safety of the players. The players are compensated for playing a violent game. The sanctity of the game goes unprotected…

Raiders in PRIMETIME

Rejoice Raider Nation! The Raiders received two primetime games. One is opening weekend hosting the Chargers, wearing throwback uniforms. The Raiders wearing throwbacks should be interesting, considering the uniform has hardly been altered. Silver numbers on white jerseys?

The other game is at the amazing new stadium the Cowboys are moving into. If you haven't taken a chance to look at this place, it is unbelievable. <url>http://stadium.dallascowboys.com/</url>

I wonder if Al Davis and Jerry Jones will sit in the same box together. Might be an interesting Thanksgiving gesture.

Considering how terrible the Raiders have been in primetime over the last few seasons, maybe you aren't rejoicing. I can't help but rejoice because finally I can care about a game on Thanksgiving.

I've heard a lot of people ask, "Why do the terrible Raiders get two primetime games?" They note the primetime games are also very high ratings games.

The reason, is because you are a R…

Cornell Green

Cornell Green was arrested for aggravated assault while trying to catch a plane to Oakland.

First let me say, I don't have a problem cutting Cornell Green for the incident. He is a backup now and should be treated like one.

However, we have to put a little faith in our justice system. We have penalties for what he did. If convicted, he will be punished accordingly. Felonies exclude people from employment at most places. So if he is convicted or pleads guilty to a felony, that to me is grounds to cut a player no matter who the guy is.

There is a good chance that he pleads to a lesser charge even if he is guilty. Misdemeanor battery for example.

This certainly puts him on my short list of Raiders players I'd like to kick in the groin, but there is also a chance he didn't do anything and an upset girlfriend wanted to hurt him.

So, I'll let it play out, but you certainly have to be upset for the negative attention, when the Raiders have been pretty good about eliminating negati…

Kahlif Barnes Signs

Not long after I touted the old gimpy guy Orlando Pace, the Raiders quickly moved to strike a deal with young healthy guy Khalif Barnes. He has signed a one year deal.

Khalif brings a level of unknown. He was a huge underachiever in Jacksonville. My Jags fan friend called him a turnstile. He certainly isn't the man I'd trust with the LT spot so it will be interesting to see if he wins the job. It appears that Cable and Davis are going to give him that chance. I have severe reservations about Barnes at LT. I would be comfortable with Barnes on the right ride. Barnes also brings off the field baggage and hopefully he can clean up, but that is far from a guarantee.

A one year deal is ideal. Barnes is playing for much more money next offseason when he will be just 27. He needs to prove his worth to the team and in the NFL both on and off the field.

Here is the quote from John Clayton's article.

"I think this is a great opportunity and place for me to start fresh," Barne…

Orlando Pace Released

The Rams just released Orlando Pace.

Although Pace isn't the same player he was five years ago, he is still a really good OT, who was healthy most of last season. I can't see the Raiders not making a run at him considering we wanted Barnes and had Harris.

Pace is also a very nice locker room presence and could be a good influence on Mario Henderson and any other young lineman we might bring in. I know we are trying to get younger, but the character and skill Pace brings to the table is huge.

This is the time to strike, when an undervalued player with very good skill and a winning attitude becomes available. The right moves need to be made in Free Agency and so far this year that is the case. Orlando Pace just feels like the correct move. I have no doubt this would be a very successful signing.




Report: Cooper Removed Life Jacket

I thought it might be prudent to chime in about the recent report that Marquis Cooper, Corey Smith and William Bleakley removed their life jackets. The news takes your breathe away.

Apparently Cooper and Smith did so and willing let themselves be taken by the sea. Bleakley thought he saw a light to swim to.

It is sad, because had the men stayed with the boat, or even worn their life jackets, they probably would have survived. However, the conditions these men were put in probably took them to the very edge. If the men got to that edge and didn't fear death (and/or didn't think death was the end), you can understand making the decision to let go of the boat and to take off the life jacket. It is comforting to me knowing they willingly gave their life to the sea, instead of it being taken by the sea. In a small way, they went on their own terms. They died while doing something they love to do. The age old pastime of fishing.

I realize saying they willingly chose to go can seem un…

Update: Marquis Cooper

Bruce Cooper, Marquis' father, said that the coast guard may be losing hope that they can find the men alive. Certainly, this long in the water can cause problems, such as hypothermia, etc.

The coast guard said that the fact that the men are larger and more physically fit may aid in the likelihood of a rescue. Common sense tells us as every hour ticks by the likelihood of a rescue narrows and time may be running out for the men.

My prayers go out to the families and the men still drifting at sea. Praying for a miracle.

Needs Index Week 2: Flippers Give Grove $29 Million,

Jake Grove has officially signed with the Fins. He will get $14.5 million guaranteed. $29 Million total over the five-year contract.

This was probably a bit more than the Raiders were willing to pay for Grove, who has missed the better part of his career with injuries so far. It is a bit surprising, because the Cable had spoken so highly of Grove at the combine and considering Gallery is one of his best friends. Remember the wise words of Tim Brown. A team never losses a free agent they want to keep. If we were willing to go this high on Grove, I think parts of Raider nation would have been upset, but if we wanted to keep him, I have no doubt we would have.

I think Grove finally elevated his play last season, but I don't blame the Raiders for not putting that kind of money into a severe injury concern. Who knows if Grove will be able to keep up this level of play next season. This is a risk the Dolphins could take. He is obviously talented, but with only two healthy seasons and one …