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Showing posts from September, 2009

Source: Russell Gets Drunk on Saturday Nights

Just received some info about JaMarcus. Has a habit of going to the club on Saturday night and getting drunk. Trying to get details.

Source: If there is a rapper playing in the city, JaMarcus is there. He goes to clubs, gets drunk and plays poorly the next day.

The source is a bay area club promoter. I hope this source is bad, but I have no reason to doubt them at this point.

I seriously hope I am wrong and the source is bad. I don't see myself as a rumor creator, but I had to post that kind of information.

Nicknames

Have we been wrong to worry about the product on the field? Maybe the Raiders haven't been great because the current Raiders lack creative and descriptive nicknames.

In the past the Raiders great nicknames include:

The Snake
The Assassin
Ghost
The Mad Stork
The Mad Bomber
The Molester
Three Mile Lyle
Tooz
Wiz
Do you know more? Please leave a comment.


Do we expect Janikowski to make it up on his own?

The Polish Powderkeg
The Polish Cannon
The Polish Hammer
Lightning Feet
Seabass - How come this is the only one I knew about? The Polish Powderkeg is great!


Now I will make an attempt to nickname some of the Raiders. Feel free to propose your own. Some of these we already know about. Others are new. Some I made up.

Nnamdi Asomugha: "Nam" or "Awesomugha" - Reference to Vietnam: The long, sneaky war and being awesome.
Chris Johnson: "Gametime" - In tribute to his mentor "Primetime"
Michael Huff: "Huff Daddy"
Mike Mitchell: "Yesterday"
Kirk Morrison: …

Justin Miller Returns

According to Thomas Howard, Justin Miller will be back to return kicks for the Raiders this week.

Rankin received two weeks. Holland received one week.

Looks like the Raiders think they lack some explosiveness on kickoff returns without Nick Miller or Justin Miller.

Welcome back. He is a solid kick returner that I am sure the Raiders can use at least until Nick Miller is healthy.

Russell Breakout, Garcia Out

Forgot about it. Jeff Garcia doesn't want to be a Raider. He asked for his release. He wasn't content behind Russell. He wasn't comfortable being a mentor. He wasn't any more talented than Charlie Frye or Bruce Gradkowski. He is not coming back to Oakland.

Garcia may be miles ahead of the three quarterbacks on the Raiders roster when it comes to his understanding of the game and his craftiness as an NFL quarterback. That doesn't mean he is any kind of savior for this franchise. At his age he isn't going to be a difference maker. The Raiders would still have to run the ball effectively and play solid defense to win. Garcia is a means to a six win season in Oakland and a four win season in 2010.

Right now, the only quarterback that can lead the Raiders is JaMarcus Russell. Certainly this makes many fans grind their teeth in anger. His performance this far has been nothing short of horrible. However, there simply is no option but to ride Russell and see what he can…

Game Analysis Week 3: Broncos 23, Raiders 3

I went and re-watched the game courtesy of NFL.com.

I decided to write tally marks for each play a player made, good and bad. Below are my totals. I realize there is some subjectivity, but it isn't that hard to see a guy hold a block, make an open field tackle or get a first down after 10+ yards. Penalties, turnover, etc are easy minus marks.

Defense:
57 Ricky Brown +7 (+8,-1)
52 Kirk Morrison -4 (+4,-8)
33 Tyvon Branch +3 (+6,-3)
92 Richard Seymour +2 (+5,-3)
93 Tommy Kelly -6 (+0,-6)
61 Gerrard Warren -3 (+2,-5)
91 Trevor Scott +3 (-0,+3)
90 Desmond Bryant +0 (+1,-1)
21 Nnamdi Asomugha +3 (+4,-1)
34 Mike Mitchell +4 (+4,-0)
53 Thomas Howard +2 (+3,-1)
26 Stanford Routt -1
24 Michael Huff +1
99 Greg Ellis -1
37 Chris Johnson -3
77 Matt Shaughnessy +1

Total: +15 - Keep in mind a positive number doesn't mean we played well. It means some individuals played well and 10% (as Tom Cable implied) brought down the group. My calculations above support about 20% of guys not stacking up.

Ricky Brown was al…

Postgame Posture: Head Between Knees

Denver Domination. They beat the Raiders in just about every way possible. Interesting observations abound from the Black Hole.

1) The defense never did adjust to the Denver offense. The Broncos spread the field and lined Marshall up in the slot. The outside receivers cleared the corners and got the safeties to move back. They then would pick the linebackers with the tight end and run the slot receiver through the middle of the formation one-on-one with the linebacker. The linebackers either couldn't hang with the receivers or would be sinking too deep into coverage. It happened all day. At one point Nnamdi Asomugha was shadowing Marshall, but he never shadowed him in the slot, which is where he hurt the Raiders.

2) No pressure. The defense didn't get any. The offensive line also was easily handled by the Broncos defensive line. Both lines were out played and out hustled. When that happens it is very hard to win.

3) Vanilla offense. It almost looked like the Raiders ran the same …

Matchup: Mario, Michael, & McFadden

Any Russell talk would just be beating a dead horse. The horses the Raiders face this weekend are alive and well, sitting at 2-0 and one win away from an early division lead.

What else ails the Raiders? There are certainly other problems. The loss of Gallery will be a huge challenge over the next few weeks. One thing to watch is how Mario Henderson responds. He will no longer have Robert on his right taking on double teams and will counted on to be the best player on the left side of the line. Erik Pears filling in could also be an adventure. Seems like lately the line has performed well together.

Communication along the line will be key, which is probably why Tom Cable decided to keep Morris at center. Two changes are worse than one and Satelle hasn't instilled confidence in anyone.

From the line comes the ability to run the ball. The Raiders haven't had significant success on the ground yet this season and the biggest factor may be the lack of production from Darren McFadden.

Director of Dominance: Mike Nolan?

How good is the Bronco defense? They have played extremely well the first two games. The resurrection has been accomplished with generally inferior talent and aging super stars such as Champ Bailey.

So what is new? Defensive Coordinator Mike Nolan, fresh off a failed head coaching opportunity with the Raiders cross-bay rival.

Is this resurrection a small sample size or is Mike Nolan is defensive genius? How hard is it going to be to move the ball on the Broncos this Sunday? The only way to find out, is to look at his body of work.

Many of you liked my Russell research, so I figured I would continue that theme and bring to you some stats on the opposition's biggest defensive star, the coach.

Mike Nolan became the defensive coordinator of the New York Giants in 1993 and stayed through 1996, 1997 through 1999 with the Redskins, 2000 with the Jets, 2001-2004 with the Ravens. I'll provide defensive points allowed and yardage during his coaching tenures and for the year before and after…

Postgame Pontification: Russell Realization

Remember all the preseason predictions? We all had a couple. How many yards for JaMarcus Russell I asked. How many wins is a question we usually can't resist before a single regular season game has been played.

One other prediction was a common theme this summer. First three games: Chargers, Chiefs, Broncos. Win two of those and maybe just maybe the Raiders might make some noise and be towards the higher side of all those preseason record predictions.

So the Raiders are two weeks into the season; have we forgotten? The Raiders record is 1-1 with that pivotal third game with the Broncos coming up this Sunday in Oakland.

The Raiders must go into this game and win, because losing two at home and winning the single game on the road in KC will do little to dispel the opinion of the Raiders league wide.

To top it all off, the Broncos are coming in 2-0 and could potentially take a commanding division lead if they were to defeat the Raiders on the road. The defense seems to be much improved, …

Gallery: Broken Fibula

Gallery has told reporters he has a broken fibula.

If there is no tissue damage, the heal time is approx 6-8 weeks followed by some physical therapy.

If there is tissue damagem he will need surgery and is likely done for the season.

Update: Cable said 5-6 weeks on the Radio postgame, but my guess is that is the best case scenario.

Higgins Questionable, Bush to Backup McFadden

Johnnie Lee Higgins is a game time decision on Sunday. If he plays he will only return punts. If I had to guess, he wont play. He hasn't practiced and getting crushed on a punt return could cause ball security issues. The shoulder is very important to how you hold the football.

This means Hiram Eugene will return punts for the first time in his NFL career. Cross your fingers.

Michael Bush will backup Darren McFadden this weekend with Justin Fargas healthy. Most people expected Fargas to be phased out as the season went on, but it looks like it may happen earlier than expected. With Louis Rankin as the kick return man, wouldn't be surprised if Fargas is inactive for the game.

It will be interesting to see what kind of game the Raiders put together on the road after a tough loss. They also are working on a short week after having a lot of time to prepare for San Diego for the opener. If the defense comes out as strong as it did against the Chargers, the Raiders should have a very g…

Ochocinco Giveaway

As if you needed another reason to open a Twitter account and follow me @Raidersblog. Chad Ochocinco is giving away an all expenses paid trip to Bengals home games for the entire season.

Now I realize this is a Raiders Blog. No one wants to go to a Bengals game unless it is the one at the Coliseum on November 11. However, the guy is just too entertaining to resist the chance to hang out with him for a weekend.

You may not like him, if that is the case you probably didn't get this far. Did you?

I thought I'd spread the word for Chad, after all, he wanted Al Davis to call him a couple seasons ago when he wanted out of Cincy.

McAllister & Mistake

Yesterday, the Baltimore Sun first reported that people around Chris McAllister said he would be joined the Raiders in the next couple weeks. He needs to get into shape.

This is probably the end of the line for John Bowie. Michael Huff played a lot on passing downs and had an excellent football game on Monday night and the Raiders are obviously in need of cornerback help. There is simply no one to push Routt for that third spot. The coaches tried to create a competition for the starting job to get the best out of Routt and Chris Johnson.

Routt's problem is really football instincts. He has every kind of talent he could need to be successful and is always late. Although I will say the Vincent Jackson touchdown is most likely on Asomugha.

McAllister may not be the corner he used to be, but he has excellent instincts. Many people think he is better suited at safety, but considering our apparent spike in depth at safety and the lack of it at corner, I think he will join the team as a cor…

Return Game Hurting

Monday night the coverage teams were less than spectacular, but at least they remained relatively healthy. The return game came in a man down when Nick Miller came down with shin splints, that mysteriously developed into a broken right ankle. He will be out 4-6 weeks and it will be interesting to see if what the Raiders decide to do with him in regards to putting him on IR.

Also, Johnny Lee Higgins was rocked by Eric Weddle in the second half and didn't return. He has a sprained AC joint in his shoulder. This is the same as a separated shoulder. There are varying degrees this injury, so the severity of the injury remains unknown. Typically, these heal on their own with rest and ice. I wouldn't expect him to miss a lot of time unless the injury was severe, but he may miss at least one week.

Still, the Raiders may be in need of punt and or kick returner this week. With a healthy Fargas, Louis Rankin will be the 4th runningback and kick returner. Not exactly a great way to provide …

Raiders Go Down Fighting 24-20

Your 2009 Oakland Raiders.

It was a great game, that is certain. It was a heart breaker. A sea-saw of emotion.

Lets go back to my keys to the game as posted earlier.

Heyward-Bey vs. Cromartie - DHB was a non-factor. That is certainly a concern.

Murphy vs. Jammer - Murphy actually had a good game. A bit inconsistent, but he got open and caught two TDs. One that was taken away.

Henderson vs. Merriman - Merriman's name wasn't called. Henderson played great.

Morrison vs Tomlinson - LT was benched for Sproles. However, Morrison made a few key mistakes late in the game that let Sproles get yards. Tough, because he played good otherwise.

Ellis vs. Clary/Vasquez - Ellis and the entire D-line was great, even late in the game.

Morris vs. Williams - Besides on key sack where Morris and Gallery didn't communicate, Morris played well.

Russell vs Russell - Oh boy. There is a lot here to go over. Saving this for a blog post tomorrow. Raider Nation is certainly getting annoyed with him. He did mak…

2009 Game 1 Preview

What we know:

This very first game will tell Raider Nation how much hope to have for this season. 4 or 8 wins? Respect or disrespect?

There has been some improvement, but the Raiders still have a lot to work on.

Last season, the Raiders went 0-2 versus the Chargers.

The first game was at home and the Raiders were leading at half-time 15-0, only to be outscored 28-3 in the second half. This game showcased Kiffin and Ryan's inability to adjust at half-time.

The second game was in San Diego. The Raiders' offense was terrible, being held to zero points. The Raiders 7 points came on a Justin Miller kick return.

What's changed?

In comes two rookie receivers with 4.3 speed, Mario Henderson, Greg Ellis, Tyvon Branch and Oren O'Neal.

Shawn Merriman is the only notable addition to the Chargers lineup.

What to watch:

Heyward-Bey vs. Cromartie - We all know the eyes are on the receiver, but are the eyes also on Cromartie? There is talk the Chargers may let Cromartie walk when his contract…

Seymour's Family Situation Caused Delay

So now we can all feel a bit badly about harassing Seymour. Tom Cable was telling the truth when he said Seymour wanted to be in Oakland and he did have issues with the Patriots.

The issue? Bill Belichick is heartless. You give him eight years of service, in which you make the pro bowl a few times. You also are a team captain and you help the guy win three Super Bowls.

So how does that coach tell you that you have been traded? He calls you up and tells you, point blank, dry and without emotion.

Call the guy and tell him you want to see him in person. Have the common decency to realize what that player has done for you, including netting you a 2011 first-round pick.

Second, by now you may have read the Boston Herald article, but I'll re-hash it anyway.

He has four kids and a 15-year-old cousin he is guardian of. That cousin lost his mother, just changed schools to attend school where Seymour lives.

His options were limited, have his family move to Oakland abruptly changing his cousin…

Snow Job Revenge?

Richard Seymour has been sent the five-day letter & if he doesn't report by Tuesday the Raiders can put him on left club list and he is done for 2009. His final contract year will be pushed to 2010.Provided the Raiders put Seymour on this list, his rights remain with the Raiders next season.However, the trade with the Patriots still hinges on him reporting AND passing his physical.So theoretically the Raiders could invalidate the trade one year from now if Seymour fails said physical.Seymour would lose his year for not reporting and Pats would be forced to take a 31-year-old Seymour back along with the final year of hisdeal. This is not likely, but an interesting gray area that is within the CBA rules.Because of this unlikey but possible scenerio the NFL really needs to step in and clarify the issue, even if the CBA affords no clarity.Leave it to the Raiders to prompt a future rule/CBA change.Seymour isn't making friends in the locker room and I've talked to ple…

Impressive vs Questionable

I've recently read several articles touting Joe Flacco as an "impressive young QB." Got me to thinking just what was the difference between Flacco's "impressive" and JaMarcus Russell's "questionable?"

So here are the raw stats Russell (+) vs. Flacco(-) from 2008.

QB Rating:
-3.2 points

Completion Percentage:
 -6.2 %

Passing YPG:
-24.2 ypg

Yards Per Pass Attempt:
-.03 ypa

Yards per completion:
+.68 ypc

TD per game:
-.008

Int per Game:
-.22

Sacks:
-.07 sacks per game

Fumbles:
-.1125 per game.


The .1125 fumbles per game is virtually insignificant as well as .07 sacks and .008 TDs. Russell did throw approximately 1 more INT for every five games played, which is barely on the map.

Basically speaking, Russell would have had to complete 1.52 of the passes he didn't complete in 2008 for a total of 24.2 yards to match Flacco's numbers.

I think people need to remember that the Raiders had one of the leagues worst receiving cores and that the Ravens had a vastly…

Center of Attention: Eugene Parker

Richard Seymour's holdout means I am forced to talk about it. I don't think this is news, but I feel the need to balance what is being said in the media and spread across cyber space faster than herpes at a Shawn Merriman/TilaTequila party.

Ann Killion wrote a piece this morning for SI about how agent Eugene Parker is the most powerful person in bay area sports right now. He has the 49ers and the Raiders by the "shorts." If only that was true. In fact, agent Eugene Parker needs the bay area teams more than they need him.

If Crabtree sits out the season, he walks away from millions without a chance of getting drafted anywhere near where he was this year in the 2010 NFL draft. Parker can't let a client walk away from millions of dollars, he would lose a lot of his big clients and future clients if he let that happen, 49ers or not.

If Parker is seriously considering the same kind of sit out the season with Seymour he also walks away from millions. The Raiders don't…

Seymour Lacks Leverage

Richard Seymour is in shock. He wishes he didn't have to move his
family across the country. He feels betrayed by the Patriots. He feels
like his chances of a super bowl ring just went out the window.All of these are valid feelings. The Raiders aren't likely going to
the Super Bowl. The Pats betrayed him. When you sign a contract you
hope thr other party is in it for the long haul.His good friend Rodney Harrison said he doesn't know if Seymour will
report and that he wouldn't report unless the Raiders agreed not to
franchise him after the season.The problem is Seymour doesn't have any leverage to demand anything
from the Raiders. If he doesn't report he will be done for the year at
age 30 the Raiders are not liable for the compensation and the Pats
and Raiders can try and work out other compensation. If they can't
Seymour one year deal would still be valid with the Patriots.Seymour will report on Friday and get ready to help the Raiders turn
it a…

Mobile Site Launch

On the go this labor day? Maybe you are at the in-law's barbecue and they are all 49ers fans. Maybe you have been banished to life at the grill, slaving over the charcoal to cook your famous ribs.

Whatever the case may be, now you don't have to be near a computer to catch up on the latest Raiders news.

Introducing the RaidersBlog.tk mobile site. You can find it at http://raiders.mofuse.mobi/ and for iPhone users http://raiders.mofuse.mobi/iphone

If you add a link to your iPhone homepage, you also get the sweet Raidersblog.tk logo icon.

Richard Seymour a Raider

Jarring as it sounds, ESPN reports that he has been traded for a 2011 first-round selection.

Al Davis must really love the guy, because he doesn't let go of first-round draft picks very easily.

This was a needed move and Seymour is just 29, so he should have a few good years left.

Seymour is a sack machine and also a solid run defender. He is also the type of guy media pundits credit with creating the Patriots culture.

It will be interesting to see where the Raiders ask Seymour to play. When the Patriots previously played a 4-3 in 2001 and 2002, he played defensive tackle. He has played defensive end in the 3-4 since that time.

He should help with depth across the entire defensive front and provide a valuable locker room attitude. He is a guy that knows winning and Tom Cable needs those type of guys on his side.

It was about time the Raiders put some effort into improving the defensive line other than trying to blame it all on coaching and gap discipline.

How Did We Do?

I missed five spots:
John Wade
Gary Russell
Slade Norris
Jeff Garcia
Rashad Baker

Who made it instead of them?
Louis Rankin
Todd Watkins
Luke Lawton
Sam Williams
Bruce Gradkowski

48/53 isn't bad. Lets see how other did:

Justblogbaby.com also missed five (48/53)
Gary Russell
John Wade
Slade Norris
Rashad Baker
Ryan Boschetti

Jerry McDonald from the Oakland Tribune also missed five (48/53)
Russell
Norris
Garcia
Baker
Boschetti

David White from the SF Chron missed six (47/53)
Garcia
Russell
Wade
Norris
Baker
Holland

Paul Gutierrez from the Sacramento Bee missed six (47/53)
Garcia
Russell
Boschetti
Norris
J. Miller
Baker

Beers all around I say!

Raiders Announce Roster Cuts to 53

Cuts include:
OLB Slade Norris
CB Darrick Brown
S Jerome Boyd
DE Greyson Gunheim
WR Jonathan Holland
OLB David Nixon
MLB Chris O'Neal
QB Jeff Garcia
FB Marcel Reece
RB Gary Russell
P Ricky Schmitt
TE Darrell Strong
OL Mark Wilson
DT Ryan Boschetti
OLB Marcel Greenwood
CB Justin Miller
DT Terdell Sands
OT Seth Wand.

Waived/Injured Include:
S Rashad Baker
C John Wade
CB Mike Hawkins

Sam Williams makes it another season. He appeared comfortable at middle linebacker and plays good special teams, but we haven't been good since he has been here. Slade Norris is the casualty to keep him.

I have to admit I thought about this one being possible.

Nick Miller will be the kick return man over Justin Miller, who was cut.

Todd Watkins also made it at WR, a surprise to me.

Garcia is out because Frye and Gradkowski were committed to JaMarcus, whatever that means.

Chris Morris is starting center. Not a surprise to me, but a surprise to some. I think he makes best line calls and plays more consistently than other centers…

Fight For 53

Here is my prediction:
Surprise cuts: Sands, J. Miller, Sam Williams
Surprise keepers: Nick Miller, Gary Russell, John Bowie

Quarterbacks (3)
Jeff Garcia
JaMarcus Russell
Charlie Frye

Backs (5)
Oren O'Neal
Gary Russell
Michael Bush
Justin Fargas
Darren McFadden

Receivers/Tight Ends (9)
Darrius Heyward-Bey
Johnnie Lee Higgins
Louis Murphy
Chaz Schilens
Javon Walker
Nick Miller
Zach Miller
Brandon Myers
Tony Stewart

Offensive Line (10)
Khalif Barnes
Cornell Green
Mario Henderson
Erik Pears
Chris Morris
Samson Satele
John Wade
Cooper Carlisle
Robert Gallery
Paul McQuistan

Secondary (9)
Nnamdi Asomugha
Chris Johnson
Stanford Routt
John Bowie
Hiram Eugene
Michael Huff
Tyvon Branch
Mike Mitchell
Rashad Baker

Linebackers (6)
Ricky Brown
Kirk Morrison
Thomas Howard
Jon Alston
Slade Norris
Isaiah Ekejiuba

Defensive Line
Greg Ellis
Jay Richardson
Trevor Scott
Matt Shaughnessy
William Joseph
Tommy Kelly
Gerard Warren
Desmond Bryant

Special Teams (3)
Sebastian Janikowski
Jon Condo
Shane Lechler

Potential Practice Squad Adds
Marcel Reece
David Nixon
Chris O&…

53 Man Roster Prediction

This will be the final non-meaningful little preseason contest we do to pass the time, but it is one I've been doing every year since I was about 12.

Predict the 53 man roster.

It is pretty simple. Predict the 53 guys that make the final roster. If you beat me, I'll buy you a beer. If you guess all 53 correctly, you win a $20 Raider Image Gift.

By my estimation, about 12 guys vying for six spots tonight. My only motivation to watch is the 53 man roster.

Upset picks will be included in mine and if you hit I'll buy you a bigger beer!

You can email your list or post a comment. Peace.

Twittercast #1

The Preseason Debacle, Nnamdi's Wrist, Tom Cable

In case you all missed last nights Twittercast is here.

As I state in this twittercast last night and tweeted again this morning Nnamdi will not miss the opener. He has now confirmed this himself to Jerry McDonald. There is no question he is playing in the opener.

Who is Paul Hackett?

First in a series exploring the 2009 Oakland Raiders coaching staff.

So who is this guy that is coaching young JaMarcus Russell and is he any good?

You may know a little about Paul Hackett's infamous tenure as USC Head Coach. Obviously in college football, recruiting is half the battle. So lets looks at his performance as coach related to team success in his coaching areas. Specifically offenses and QBs.



From 1993 to 1997 Paul Hackett led the Kansas City Chiefs offense to four playoff appearances in five seasons
QBs: Joe Montana 2 seasons, Steve Bono 2, Elvis Grbac 1
RBs: Marcus Allen 4, Greg Hill 1
WRs: Willie Davis 3, Chris Penn 1, Andre Rison 1

1998-2000: USC HC

2001: OC NY Jets
Offense Rank: 16
331.7 YPG
QB: Vinny Testaverde
RB: Curtis Martin
WR: Laveranues Coles
Lost to Raiders in First Round of Playoffs

2002 OC NY Jets
Offense Rank: 22
314.8 YPG
QB: Chad Pennington
RB: Curtis Martin
WR: Laveranues Coles
Lost to Raiders in First Round of Playoffs

2003 OC NY Jets
Offense Rank: 19
309.4 YPG
QB: Chad Pe…