Part of the Bay Area News Group

Another win in Miami?

By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Sunday, November 16th, 2008 at 9:43 am in Oakland Raiders.

Note: Didn’t make the Miami trip this week, so no live in-game blogs today. Will post a wrap-up following the game.

Is it really too much to ask to convert a few third down plays and punch the ball into the end zone two or three times?

If the Raiders could manage to do that, it’s not inconceivable they could beat the Miami Dolphins today.

There may be stats and events that serve as signposts to 3-13, but keep in mind the schedule has been brutal since Tom Cable took over for Lane Kiffin.

They got the Saints at home, where they’ve lost only once. Baltimore is now considered a dark horse AFC Super Bowl contender. The New York Jets are 7-3 and atop the AFC East _ and that’s a game the Raiders won.

Most recently, Atlanta is NFC’s turnaround story of the year and Carolina is atop the NFC South at 8-2.

The Dolphins are 5-4 and coming off a 21-19 win over a Seattle team which stands at 2-7, same as the Raiders.

I’m not suggesting there is any sort of remarkable turnaround in the offing, only that every once in awhile teams with bad records do enough right in an afternoon to defeat one with a better record.

If a few things go the Raiders way, today could be one of those days.

For instance:

– A big play by Darren McFadden, preferably for a touchdown. Short of that, McFadden’s presence sets up someone else for a touchdown. Touchdowns are so hard for the Raiders to come by, they could use a quick strike.

– A few first downs from Ronald Curry, who could be back in the starting lineup today with Javon Walker out for the season and Chaz Schilens active but hobbling with an ankle sprain. He’s the only player with a real sense of how to get past the third down stake _ now he’s got to remember how to hold on to the ball.

– A running game that gets 150 to 175 yards rushing after gaining 299 in Miami last year. It would help if a lot of that is straight at Joey Porter, slowing his pass rush. There were some signs against Carolina the Raiders were starting to snap out of their run-funk.

The Raiders can’t afford another sack-fumble from JaMarcus Russell and zero interceptions would be nice. Today’s backup is Marques Tuiasosopo, as Andrew Walter is listed as the third quarterback because of an ankle sprain.

– A big kickoff return or two from newcomer Justin Miller. Sometimes a little juice from a recent acquisition can do wonders. Better kick coverage, the usual 2008 performances from punter Shane Lechler and kicker Sebastian Janikowski. That means making every field goal attempt from 50 yards and in, and maybe a kick or two from beyond.

– A defensive performance which rivals last week. Chad Pennington isn’t going to beat the Raiders deep, so the tackling must be good. Tommy Kelly was as stout in the middle against the Panthers as he has been all season.

The “Keep it simple’’ approached worked well last week.

– A wakeup call. West Coast teams have been coming out in a fog in 10 a.m. starts. Fact is, it’s a problem of bad West Coast teams. It’s an excuse. Don’t use it.

I’ll check in following the game . . .

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  • http://www.cosmicdanceband.com SilverNblack666

    Whatever the case there is no way Cable keeps the job!!

  • Brown81

    Harbaugh will be another Lane Kiffin. A year from now Al would fire him and say, “he wasn’t the guy I thought he was”

  • Brown81

    Seabass is actually very solid this year. Harris, on the other hand, is a joke.

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    DMAC,

    4 touches the whole game.

    Pitiful.

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • Dakota

    Harbaugh? What has Harbaugh done that makes you think he could be a good NFL coach? To me Harbaugh is just another unproven coach that might be a disaster and would have restrictions placed on him just like Kiffin did. Fassel is a proven winner, and he did it in NY, not an easy place to win, maybe Al gives him more say in operations, assist. coaches etc?

  • http://view.playlist.com/12942502411/standalone La Milicia Negra

    # SilverNblack666 Says:
    November 16th, 2008 at 1:25 pm

    yeah but Harbaugh would be a better pick and you know it Dakota
    ______________________________________________________

    Harbaugh is just like Kiffin, he is a loudmouth, and he has a strong mind, not something Al likes now a days..

  • doomed

    the only game we will win from here on out is the chiefs one. 3-13 here we come!

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    Brown81,

    I am sick and tired of watching Seabass miss kicks. Sure he made the long one against the Jets in OT. However, had he made that 40 something earlier in that game there would have been no OT.

    Again, he misses an easy (for an NFL kicker) 40 yard kick and we lose by 2.

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • DoneDeal

    Look at the teams that win. they have a coach thats not afraid to punch you in the mouth, or is considered a hard a$$. the only coach i can see is cower, but he is to smart to work for the idiot in the box. so we will be lousy for the next 10 years.

  • DoneDeal

    harbaugh is a cupcake with no frosting.

    We wont beat the chefs. we go 2-14 easy.

  • Brown81

    S&B, the guy has one of the highest FG percentages in the league. The issue is that we have to kick SO MANY field goals, especially field goals from 40 plus yards. We have no offense. THAT’S the problem, not Seabass

  • lefty12

    don’t count on that Doomed.KC can score TDs,we can’t.

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    Hire Jim Fassell as soon as the season is over. Give him unfettered access to the team so that he can start his evaluations now.

    Let’s be honest. Fassell is an NFL coach and he is competent. He’s the best we can get because of the owner & gm. Plus he wants the job AND knows what comes with it.

    Bring him in and stop the charade.

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • Dakota

    I can’t believe I am pining for Jim Fassel! Fuk Al, you have really taken your franchise down.

  • Raiders WR #11

    You know what, think about this. We have gone through 6 or so coaches, about as many QBs, WRs, RBs, and TEs. And nothing has changed. The only things that have been constant have been Al, Ryan, and his D.
    So obviously there’s something else wrong with the team and it’s going to take a lot more than simply changing HCs again to fix it.
    We shouldn’t just hired a HC because he wants to come here. We have to hire a HC that will bring a 5 year plan to the team. Someone that demands respect from Al, and that has a team of Assistants that makes sense. Kiffin had that team, but didn’t have Al’s respect.
    The new HC has to be someone that is brought in along with a new Executive of Football Operations. And it would be wise to let that Exec bring in his own people for HC, and then let that HC bring in his own assistants.
    Then let that team worry about bringing in players.
    But most importantly, Davis needs to stay out of all of this. And deal directly with the Exec of Football Ops if he has something to say.
    Then, Al needs to let this play out for the 5 years. If Al wants a Atlanta or even Miami type of turn around next year, then he needs to look really hard at what other teams are doing. And since this is a “copycat” league, than be a copycat, and do it right.
    But whoever the next people in charge are, a lot of thought and careful planning has to go into picking this people. And it all starts with the Exec of Football Ops.

    Al needs to first bring in a council of wise football minds, maybe other owners, or ex football people that have good input on how to turn a franchise around, to help him pick this executive. Unfortunately, I’m afraid that Al has too much pride to do such a thing, and he thinks that he knows all that is football. And he will most likely make that decision on his own. And more than likely, another 6 years or so of horrible football will come our way…

    The Raiders are my team, they have been from the beginning, I have not had another team ever. And I will continue rooting for them, but I will not spent any money on tickets or special TV packages that show me all the games until they show that they are worth the cash coming out of my skinny wallet.

    As always, GO RAIDERS!

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    It’s real hard to say anything positive about a game where we get 33 yards passing and 24 yards running in the first half. Especially since we had seven penalties and gave up four sacks in the first half.
    It’s easy to blame Cable but he’s an interim coach appointed in med season who had to take over the play calling because it sucked. The play calling in this game was-on some drives-a lot better. Right now Cable has too many jobs.
    One thing that was improved in this game was that Russell was getting the ball off a whole lot faster. Also, he was really threading the needle with with passes to Zack Miller. He did the same with a three or so passes to Curry. When it comes to long passes it’s pretty much of a Hail Mary every time.
    We could have easily won this game. Unfortunately that doesn’t really say much because Miami’s realy not that good.

  • lefty12

    a 45 yd FG is not a gimmie.also Papa and Flores mentioned that the wind was really blowing sideways.

  • Brown81

    You’re right, WR #11, but nobody can execute a 5 year plan because Al won’t let them. He fires them after 1 season.

  • http://ibabuzz 4evaRaider

    post 789 MistaBrown;I stand by my comment

  • Dakota

    I wish someone would shove Al’s Shamwow down his throat and end our misery.

  • Dakota

    just kidding

  • http://view.playlist.com/12942502411/standalone La Milicia Negra

    # S&B – Nation Collective Says:
    November 16th, 2008 at 1:30 pm

    Brown81,

    I am sick and tired of watching Seabass miss kicks. Sure he made the long one against the Jets in OT. However, had he made that 40 something earlier in that game there would have been no OT.

    Again, he misses an easy (for an NFL kicker) 40 yard kick and we lose by 2.

    Where’s the Commissioner?
    ____________________________________________________

    LOL, NO seasbass IS the best Kicker to ever play the game, he might miss 98% of his kicks, but if any is going to make that 70kick its him, he is just a good kicker as Chris Carr is a returner.. LOL

    right now i’m watchin JAX-Tenn.. and Chris Carr just had a ‘return’.. LOL

  • Dakota

    maybe

  • Roch Romanson

    Whoever is the next coach needs to have control. Al needs to step back, if anything the last 5+ years prove he`s lost touch. He can still be the owner and talk about the greatness of the raiders, but he has to stay out of football operations.

    It was appropriate in today`s game to see Bill Parcells up in the box today…an example of what and who a great director of football operations can be and should do. AD would have been wise to dump all of that D Hall, and J Walker money into an offer for Parcells, regardless, whereever we go from here, the point needs to be clear. AD removes himself from personnel and football decisions.

    If he is truly committed to winning, and truly wants the best for the Raiders he needs to remove his ego from this decision, and allow a different perspective take over the reigns.

    That is what needs to be done for this team to improve. I hope he can see that.

  • http://view.playlist.com/12942502411/standalone La Milicia Negra

    Dakota..

    I would like that philly game to end very soon =)

  • DoneDeal

    it will be another decade before this team wins again.

  • Dakota

    Well, at least this game is over at 2 pm and now I have some day left to do something productive…or play Call of DUTY!

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    Raiders WR #11,

    But Al Davis is the owner. So your suggestion is just plain unrealistic. The team has some talent and the only hope is that we can get a coach in here that can run practices and call a game. Jim Fassell is our only hope. If you can’t accept that then you will be forever frustrated.

    Al Davis is the owner & gm and as a result can run the team as he sees fit. Unfortunately, the league doesn’t care about the malpractice that is being conducted in Oakland.

    So lets get Fassell in here and HOPE that he can bring some sanity to the football field.

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • Raiders WR #11

    I’m beginning to think that Al is purposely sabotaging this team so that he can move it back to LA. Which might be why the NFL is not doing anything about the joke that the Raiders has become. LA is a bigger market and would generate huge revenue for the league. I bet you guys if this happens, all of a sudden when the Raiders move to LA they will be good. (More money)
    What is that, like 2 years away until the lease is up in Oakland Stadium?…

  • lefty12

    Seabass is 15 for 17 on kicks under 50 yds.i quarantee any coach in the NFL would take that.
    LMN-why do you exaggerate.nobody called him the best.but he isn’t the worst either.again,you can’t expect to win when your Off. doesn’t score a TD.

  • http://ibabuzz 4evaRaider

    man~~

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    Roch Romanson,

    Once again, Al Davis is the owner. He runs the ship in a totally dysfunctional way and refuses to change.

    You bring up great ideas. Maybe the Lions will implement them, but its impossible to happen here.

    It is what it is. You have to hope that Al hires Jim Fassell and that he can put in a professional NFL level offense and defense.

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • Brown81

    WR #11, I’ve actually thought about that recently. I wonder if he is playing his way out of oakland. I could see him doing that.

  • Raiders WR #11

    S&B, I know my suggestion is unrealistic, because Al would never admit that he needs that much help turning this thing around. He thinks or wants to do it all himself so that he can take full credit for the re-birth.
    But also, as an owner, if he truly and really wanted to win now, he would look at this past seasons and realize that maybe he does need to step aside and let people that are in touch with today’s football operations take charge.
    He can still have final say on all issues, but by having a person in between the HC and the owner, it helps with dealing with this type of stuff.

  • Brown81

    McGlockton just threw Steve Wisniewski’s name out there for GM. Not a bad idea. I wonder if Chet is on to something.

  • Brown81

    I’ve had enough punishment for one day, I’m off to get drunk.

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    I’m really ticked off at Seabass because he didn’t make that 73 yard kick that Kiffin had him do.

    Get real with this kick stuff. When did it become true that a kicker is supposed to make it from anywhere?
    If the guy is accurate at forty yards and under-he’s ok. Beyond that it’s extra.

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    All,

    Sebastian was a FIRST ROUND PICK!!!!

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    Will we start Mario Henderson please.

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • Twocents

    No one has to worry about the Raiders moving to L.A. or any where else as long as Al is alive.

    No city on earth wants this disaster.

    When Mark Davis inherits the team he will sell and then it will be moved and re-named.

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    Kwame Harris cost us this game. Once again, you get the team gets inside the 10 and end up kicking a FG from the 20. Kwame Harris had TWO false starts…..TWO!!!

    There you have!!! Get Tom Cable out of here and scrap the ZBS…

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • K-Rock

    Should have went for the score on 4th and goal from the 2.

    When will the Raiders learn to punt the dang ball instead of trying 50 yard FGs?

  • Raiders WR #11

    2Cents, Mark Davis is not going to inherit this team when Al dies. It will be Al’s wife. And even when that happens, Al has instructions as to how to proceed with the team after. If you don’t believe me, go look up the Raiders or Al Davis in w i k i p e d i a.

  • http://view.playlist.com/12942502411/standalone La Milicia Negra

    Dakota..

    okay, now I start believe i will beat ya =) *knock on wood*

  • Roch Romanson

    How sad is it, that the big headlines and high profile talk about the Raiders involves the punter and the place kicker. I actually heard the commentator today suggest that Shane Lechler would be the Raiders MVP.

    I dont want to take anything away from the talent of those two guys, but its pretty sad when the punter and the pk get more press time than your WRs, DEs and QB.

  • S&B – Nation Collective

    Once again Rob Ryan cannot call a game in the 4th QTR. Cable should take the defensive playcalling in the 4th QTR. Just like Buffalo and San Diego, he goes and gets ultra-conservative in the 4th QTR. Playing that cheezy zone defense.

    The defense has enough talent to be productive. Get a real defensive coordinator and we will be fine.

    I like Kalimba Edwards at defensive end.

    Where’s the Commissioner?

  • Nnamdi21

    Good article if your interesed.

    http://www.raidernationstation.com

    Pretty much says it all.

  • http://view.playlist.com/12942502411/standalone La Milicia Negra

    blah blah nation station blah blah.. i stopped reading their stuff over a year ago, its just as bad as nancy g4y… just in the opposite direction..

  • JB

    847

    What article?

  • Raiders WR #11

    I do like the helmets they have on their site though. Kinda cool..