Goodell on the Raiders


How NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell responded to media questions regarding the Raiders and the state of Bay Area football:

Q: Why did you come to Oakland?

Goodell: I try to get around to every stadium every couple of years. I haven’t been out here yet so . . . this is a game that we had picked a couple of months ago. I’m glad I’m here.

Q: Your impressions of this stadium facility, one of the oldest in the NFL?

Goodell: It is. And it’s something that we’ve been meeting with a lot of people today about how to address that from a long-term standpoint. It’s clear, and I think everyone accepts it, that something has to get done here with a new stadium at some point. And I’ve had a chance to talk to some of the leadership here about how we can help in that process. There are a lot of passionate fans here, as you know, from talking to fans here.

Q: Both the Raiders and 49ers need stadiums _ any chance they could agree on a common stadium?

Goodell: That’s complicated by a lot of factors. The teams here have to come together. The communities have to come together and say, ‘This is the best way to get something done.’ I don’t know if that’s the best solution here or not. But that is something that I think needs dialogue and everyone is going to have to evaluate that as one alternative to the long-term solution for both teams.

Q: What is the challenge now in getting the G3 stadium fund replenished in light of the credit crunch and is it more difficult to gain financing?

Goodell: A couple of things. First, the G3 fund expired just over a year ago, so that funding is not available right now. Clearly, in this economic environment it makes building anything more challenging. And we obviously, as you know, have issues on the labor side in which we’re trying to look at our labor costs, and the increased risks in building stadiums like this. We’re probably building a stadium in New York that’s going to be about $1.8 billion.”

Q: Other sports have said the economy is having an impact. Is it having an impact on the NFL?

Goodell: Unfortunately earlier this week we advised our people that we’re laying off 150 people. So yeah, we’re seeing it on a variety of levels. We’re seeing it on our sponsors, our partners, our broadcast partners. Clearly our fans are being faced with either less disposable income. There are a lot of challenges.

Q: The Raiders have not been competitive for six years now. Does it fall within your realm as commissioner as something to address?

Goodell: Not individually, no. Competitiveness . . . I think we’ve got a very competitive league. The Dolphins showed how fast you can turn a franchise around. The Atlanta Falcons have showed how fast you can turn a franchise around. This franchise has been competitive for decades. I’m sure Mr. Davis and the Raiders are going to turn that around.

Q: Is there ever a situation where you could see yourself stepping in in that regard as far as (ensuring) competitiveness?

Goodell: I’ve got enough things to do. No. (Laughter). I work for 32 teams. I can’t work for one. And I’m not sure I’d be much help, by the way.

Q: How important is it for the Raiders to remain here in Oakland, with their lease coming up in a couple of years?

Goodell: I think it’s important for all of our teams to stay in their communities. This is something we’ve focused on an awful lot over the last 10 or 15 years, in trying to make sure we create an environment where the team can be successful, the community can be successful and together they can create a partnership that’s going to do great things for the fans and the community.

Q: Did you meet with Al Davis today?

Goodell: I did.

Q: How would you characterize the relationship of the NFL office with the Raiders?

Goodell: It’s better than it has been in many, many years. We’re working together on issues. We’re trying to do things that will benefit the NFL and the Raiders together in the communities that we both represent.

Q: What about the Los Angeles market, have you thought about it much?

Goodell: Yes (laughter). Well, listen the reality is, the NFL is going to do great without Los Angeles, and Los Angeles is going to do great without the NFL. My thought has always been, together we can do better. We’re having good dialogue with the people there trying to create an opportunity that is good for the community and is good for the NFL. It would be great to be back there. We know we have millions of fans in that market and we would love to be back there. But it has to be back in a way that is good for the community and the NFL.

Q: Can you share with us any of your meeting with Al Davis?

Goodell: No. Nothing that is significant. We talked about a variety of different issues. I don’t mean it was that secretive.

Q: So, you can’t divulge any details?

Goodell: No, we had a good dialogue about a variety of things that are happening in the league. And that’s part of what I do when I go to markets is want to hear from owners, I want to hear from club people, I want to hear from fans, I want to hear from the media.

Q: How important is Davis to the way the league works?

Goodell: He is very valuable to us because he has been through this. He has seen it from a variety of different perspectives, as a coach, as a commissioner, as an owner. He has a very good sense of the game of football and what’s necessary to make sure the game stays competitive. So, he can help us.

Q: Will the 49ers receive any of the (stadium) money?

Goodell: That’s what we have to address as a league and certainly with our players association. The program was very successful. It got a lot of stadiums built. But it has to be done in a way that makes sense for the collective 32 teams, and that’s what we’re going back and evaluating.

Q: Are you concerned that the 49ers or Raiders might bolt for the L.A. market?

Goodell: No, we’re worried about the California market, in general. If you look at where our stadium situation (stands), San Diego is trying to address a stadium situation, San Francisco, the Oakland Raiders. So, collectively we have to try to address these matters on a statewide level as well in our local communities.


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • Nnamdi21

    Oh no Sac Raider, Cable stays but certainly NOT as head coach.

    I think building down to ZBS is waaaaaay easier than building power no doubt at all.

    Cooper’s a prime example. He’s our best lineman and he was dropped by Denver…

    Harris and Gallery are 1st round picks. Waaay harder to build a traditional O line and I don;t see Al blowing huge sums on the trenches. Not his philosophy.

    It would seem counter productive to take the best thing about your team the last 3 years and scrap it, but w/ this out fit? You never know…

  • R.A.W.

    22-72 (Soon to be 22-73) aka K-Rock

    Don’t you mean “Soon to be 22-74”?

    anyways can you put up the link where you found that GILBRIDE TO RAIDERS article, I can’t seem to find it.

  • SacRaider

    145, we won’t have the cap space to cut all those players.. We’ll take the hit on all the bonus money and can’t afford that..

  • jhill

    I agree that drafting Oline #1 is not likely. like it or not, Henderson, Gallery, and McQuistan are locks for starting positions on the oline. only ?s are Grove and Carlilse, and if where McQ plays. Henderson has the rest of the year to audition for LT, and so far so good. I remember McQ filling in for Green last year and McQ was solid. frankly, I was surprised Green got his job back at the start of this season. worst case McQ takes over for Carlilse and we draft a RT is the 2nd or 3rd rd.

  • Tracy high alum “95-96”

    Duncan-Russle alum “97-98”

  • Dan

    22-74 – Florio is an idiot.

    Of course, who are our realistic choices? Fassel, Denny Green, Gilbride or some no name. Al needs to relinquish control, but not to some fool like these guys. Depressing really.

    Anyone know the contract status of Lechler/Burgess? Wouldn’t want to lose them too. And I doubt we bring in any free agents. Who would want to play for us?

  • vegas raider

    Walker probably will and Kelly definately will be here next year. Our biggest need on D is an above-average MLB. Anytime a team runs a screen or a draw, our LB’s are nowhere to be found. I hate to say it because I like the guy and think he could be an excellent outside backer, but Morrison is padding his tackle stats when teams are just running the ball in the second half to kill the clock. He had ZERO tackles in the first half!

  • JaBustus Russell

    As my names implies, the writing is already on the wall…colossal waste of money and Holyroller couldn’t be more correct – stop blaming the line and receivers for everything, JaBustus can’t hit the broad side of a barn and you can’t teach accuracy.

  • SacRaider

    Nnamdi21, yeah, just depends on the O-linemen you have (size). Like no way Carolina can switch down to ZBS with its current roster..

    ZBS is definitely our strength but not a lot of coaches run it. The new HC would have to be on board for us to keep it.

    And no way Cable goes back down to being line coach after HC expecially since his contract is up this year..

  • vegas raider

    So did Henderson play OK yesterday? Couldn’t really tell myself and didn’t have audio of the game, so don’t know if he was burned or had any penalties. Didn’t see any glaring errors, but wouldn’t be the first time I missed something.

  • vegas raider

    #158: I say two blatent drops, one by Miller in the end zone and one by JLH on a nice pass over the middle that would have went for big yardage. Another time he spun away and threw a beautiful 40+ yard pass in the face of the rush, that hit Schillens in stride but some Pat made a nice play to break up. He needs improvement, but he is like 22 years old, he WILL get better.

  • Dan

    Why not draft oline number 1? We just need to land a stud like Joe Thomas/Jake Long/Clady. Or maybe a stud DL, but I think guys like Howie Jr and Dorsey have been big disappointments, so you never know.

  • Charlie

    Draft priorities:

    Skill positions will have to wait. We have to invest in the lines before we can even evaluate the skill guys(including DB’s) we currently have.
    Free agents are IMO more risky than draft picks. Unless you find that unique situation where a team has a glut of talent at one spot and somebody has to go (Gannon) you usually wind up with little value relative to the salary:
    Burgess(Injury prone in Philly)
    Sands(enough said)
    Carter(injury prone in Carolina)
    etc etc etc

  • One of the things the Anti Al crowd never brings up is how many projects he saddles his coaching staff with. Not only does the coaching staff have to game plan, teach, break down film, and then make position recommendations each and every week, but then they have to bring guys like Mario Henderson, John Bowie, JLH, Chaz Shilens, Oren Oneal, Trev Scott, Jon Alston, Tyvon Branch, Hiram Eugene, Paul McQuistan and turn them into NFL players. Davis gives the staff a bunch of raw projects other teams wouldn’t try, but expects them to win NOW!! tough assignment. Mario Henderson is not going to be the Left Tackle. right Tackle maybe, but we need a bona fide LT!

  • jhill

    couldn’t be more right about the MLB need …

    our d has talent but lacks discipline. most if not all of the big runs happen on cut backs due to lack of gap discipline. LBS constantly overpursuing and being out of position. all between the ears people … all between the ears.

  • You have to build your team thru the draft anymore. Have to. It’s too expensive to do it thru free agency. If you have a hole or two to fill, Free agency is an excellent way to do that. We have too many holes to fill. We need to bring in as many new players as we can draft and sign as many undrafted free agents as we can, and see where that takes us.

  • Charlie


    Great point. In the past we might have one project on the whole team with alot of playing profesionals available to help. With the exception of Burgess, our current defensive line is made up entirely of projects if you consider Kelly coming off of ACL surgery.
    That is why we need to draft well and go with young hungry guys instead of some free agent with a ton of baggage. We have tried that and it does not work.

  • Andy Farmer

    First Round LT
    Second Round WR (backup pick = MLB)
    Third Round MLB or RT or WR
    Fourth Round DT or C
    Sixth AD project
    Seventh AD project

  • Jhill what you are saying in #165 is exactly right. But it is harder to correct than you would think. You want your players, particularly your linebackers to be aggressive. Then, other teams use that aggressiveness against you.

  • vegas raider

    I want my LB’s to step up and make a tackle on a screen pass that isn’t 15 yards down the field. Not a whole lot to ask

  • SacRaider

    167, we’ve also tried drafting well and that hasn’t worked. who is our last 1st rounder to become a star? Nnamdi? and that was back in what, 2002? I agree we need to build thru the draft, but we need to have a good draft to build off of first..

  • SacRaider

    Morrison is a FA after this year. You guys might get your wish and have a new MLB..

  • 22-72 (Soon to be 22-73) aka K-Rock

    Dan Says:
    December 15th, 2008 at 10:55 am

    22-74 – Florio is an idiot.


    Florio was only reporting that…

    ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported that Raiders owner Al Davis is interested in possibly hiring Giants offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride to be the team’s next head coach.

  • RaiderRockstar


    thanks for that Gilbride info. He would be a great addition to the staff. Fassel seems desperate for a job if he’s looking into CFL Head Coaching gigs. Maybe he’ll be brought in as OC, in the same capacity Greg Knapp is in. He’ll work with Gilbride to devise a plan, but Gilbride would be the play caller and HC. Ryan won’t be retained. good riddance. Maybe Gilbride could bring Mike Waufe back here as DC? That would be a HUGE improvement. Gibril Wilson would be happy with these moves. Al Davis always trys to pull pieces from a winner. He loves to take players and/or coaches from championship teams and hopes they’ll have repeat success here. Gilbride to Oakland makes sense. I like it. Russell needs all the help he can get!

  • Well there’s a high powered offense to model after.

  • I don’t think Morrison is a FA after this year, sac

  • jhill

    it all goes back to how do we know what we have at any position with th inept systems on offense and defense? I mean, we can all see things like Harris and Green being bust, and Captain Kirk not working out at MLB … That’s obvious.

    but whose to say that a better scheme on D might put Morrison and Nmandi in better positions to make plays? whose to say that a better d coordinator wouldn’t make adjustments and disguise some coverages or blitzes?. how about 2 deep safeties instead of 1 deep ALL THE TIME.

    don’t get me started with the sorry defensive everything!

  • MR

    2romes Says:
    December 15th, 2008 at 8:29 am

    The Raiders used to be misfits with a purpose to win,now the Raiders are just misfits.


    ^^^^ QUOTE OF THE DAY!

  • vegas raider

    J-Hill: Good points, but I don’t think a philosophy change can fix shoddy tackling like we saw yesterday. But a better plan could put more pressure on the QB, thus helping everybody do there job better.

  • SacRaider

    I think Morrison is a FA after the season. He was a 3rd round pick and signed a 4 year contract.. This is his 4th year in the league.

  • RaiderRockstar

    the Giants manage to use 3 RB’s and all have success. I think that is what Al Davis wants in Oakland with Fargas, McFadden & Bush. He sees Gilbride as a guy who can bring Russell along, like he did Eli Manning. Problem is the Giants have an o-line and receivers. We don’t! If we dump Tom Cable and the ZBS we’ll need 5 new starters on the o-line. Walker, Shields & Carter will probably all be back next season, but who knows if they’ll be healthy? and if they are, how productive will they be? I think Lelie & Curry are both gone. Higgins & Schilens should get as much playing time as possible these next 2 games … they are a part of our future plans

  • MR

    Gilbride = Another Davis puppet. Personality wise, he’s right there with Norv Turner. He’s smart and can be a great play caller on a team coached by someone else, but under Al Davis he’ll be a flunky. Gilbride would have more control coaching a team owned by Buddy Ryan.

  • #164

    Good point!

  • MR

    Which reminds me, it’s safe to say that Gilbride would demand that Rob Ryan is out before he steps foot here.

  • 22-72 (Soon to be 22-73) aka K-Rock

    # MR Says:
    December 15th, 2008 at 11:31 am

    Which reminds me, it’s safe to say that Gilbride would demand that Rob Ryan is out before he steps foot here.

    That alone would make him my candidate.

    Gilbride in 09!

  • RaiderRockstar

    That alone would make him my candidate.

    Gilbride in 09!


    me too. Gilbride, you’re hired!

  • New England showed us a bunch of looks they have not used before. We showed them every look we had shown before. What was the score, 21-0 New England in the first half?

  • I see a lot of people saying trade Nnamdi. I dont think so. We cant afford to wait another 3yrs for a corner to emerge on our team. I think we should trade Burrgess (if still under contract)
    Put 15 pnds. on Trevor Scott ( I think he may breakout)
    Move Gallery back to L. Tackle (leave him there)
    Put Henderson at R. Tackle
    McQuistan at L. Guard
    Draft Rey Maualuga 1st rnd
    Move Morrison back to OLB
    Draft O-line 2nd rnd. (there’s a stud at Baylor cant think of his name)
    Draft Best WR or DT in 3rd rnd
    Draft best Lineman throughout remainder draft.
    Get rid of everyone else who is unworthy to play in the NFL

  • sacRaider wonders, “Has Burgess completely disappeared or what?”

    No, I saw him yesterday. He jumped offsides on a crucial third down when we still had a chance, however tiny, of climbing back in it. Typical dumb Raider.

  • Chris in NY

    Gilbride would be a terrible HC. He’s been a head coach before and was lousy. Tom Coughlin is in charge of the Giants offense.

    Plus, if Gilbride fires Rob Ryan he risks Buddy coming to take another swing at him.

  • Rick The Hunter Says:
    December 15th, 2008 at 11:46 am

    Get rid of everyone else who is unworthy to play in the NFL


    Then they wouldn’t have enough players to field a team. They would have to forfeit the season.

  • SacRaider

    RTH, what happens after next year when Nnamdi leaves and we get nothing in return? We’ll still have to wait for another CB to develop. Might as well get something out of him now..

  • RaiderRockstar

    Gilbride would be a terrible HC. He’s been a head coach before and was lousy. Tom Coughlin is in charge of the Giants offense.


    Tom Coughlin is not a play caller. He’s a good coach though. I like any coach who preaches discipline, even Art Shell. Shell just chose the wrong guys to run the offense and coach the offensive line. Somebody here needs to talk about toughness!

  • Chris in NY

    After watching Andre Johnson yesterday I’m back to thinking maybe the Raiders should take Crabtree with their No. 1 pick. Crabtree has similar skills and JaMarcus needs a real receiver. Then take Phil Loadholt in Round 2, additional o-linemen later in the draft and hope Henderson ups his game.

    I actually thought JaMarcus had one of his best games yesterday. Not sure why everyone is so critical. He made some nice throws and I don’t recall one receiver running free and clear all game. He definitely needs to work on his footwork and habits, but I’m back to believing he can be a great QB, given time to develop, an o-line that gives him time to throw and receivers that can get open.

  • Rockstar is right. I think the coaches preach it and preach it, but boy these guys don’t want to play physical football. In the last San Diego game, San Diego came out and popped us right in the mouth. We collapsed. San Diego then started to humiliate us, which got a little fight out of us. Then San Diego punched us in the mouth again, and that ended the game.

  • TrevJo

    #2 Holyroller, I don’t wish to make excuses for Russell as I certainly don’t think he has performed well. But these other teams with rookie tackles and such are still getting much better pass protection than what our tackles are providing. It is a personnel situation we have to address. I would rather have a rookie like Long or Otah or Baker than Kwame Harris out there. The other thing is, most of these teams you mention (notably Pitt, Carolina, Baltimore, and Atlanta) all have something huge that the Raiders don’t which is a good defense. Take a lot of pressure off the passing game when you can hold teams to 20 points per game, which we can’t.

  • Hubbard Run Me Throw

    Things that have transpired since the Al Davis defense was relevent:

    The West Coast offense.
    Free Agency.
    The microwave oven.
    The VCR.
    The end of the Cold War.
    The Personal Computer
    Punk Rock.
    Hip Hop.
    The Bronze Age.
    The invention of fire…

  • Chris in NY

    Gilbride has a 6-16 head coaching record.

    Did you see the Giants’ playcalling last night? Terrible. No attempt to run the ball even though that’s their strength, even with Jacobs out.

    And besides, if playcalling alone made for a quality HC, Norv Turner would be a freakin Hall of Famer.

  • Here’s the problem with trading Nnamdi, Uncle Al would ask for two 1st rnd picks and no one is dumb enough to do it (not even the Redskins). Teams will just wait until the draft so Al can trade him for a 4th rnd pick. Hmm!! This cant be good. I guess we’re gonna lose him one way or another. Oh Jeez!

  • MR

    Oakglenn (It Was A Fumble), why are you telling us stuff that we knew IN AUGUST?

    You’re talking about how lousy this team is, how soft they play, how they don’t care, etc. A lot of us were saying that before the season even started ,Oakglenn, and you were telling us how wrong we were.

    You were telling us this would be the year. You were telling us Russell would pitch 3000 yards, Walker would have a grand receiving, and McFadden would have 1500.

    You were the one who insisted that there was no rift between Davis and Kiffin, and that everything was made up by the press.

    You insisted that we would be playing for home field advantage at this point in the season.

    Basically, you were wrong on every single front, Oakglenn.

    Now, you’re acting like you’re the authority on how bad this team is, lecturing those of us who knew the team was lousy all along.

    You know, I kind of respect the kool aid drinkes who stick to their guns. But the ones who guzzle the kool aid then try to be all pragmatic when they’re wrong? Take a hike, It Was An Oakglenn.