Part of the Bay Area News Group

Why Raiders kept up the pressure

By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 at 7:38 pm in Oakland Raiders.

News, notes and quotes Tuesday as the Raiders on a short week prepared for a Thanksgiving Day game in Dallas:

– The Raiders sent pressure Carson Palmer’s way several times early on against Cincinnati and wound up down 14-0. Yet throughout the final two and a half quarters they continued to confound the Bengals with pressure and even got key sacks from Tyvon Branch and Stanford Routt.

“On a couple of those plays we were right at the ball but didn’t make a play on the ball,” defensive coordinator John Marshall said. “As long as the coverage is right and it doesn’t break down then we’ll have a chance. We’ll start making plays, or get to the quarterback.”

– According to Raiders.com, Branch has been named the club’s recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award.

– Among the congratulatory calls or texts Bruce Gradkowski received following the Bengals game were from Jon Gruden, his first NFL coach in Tampa Bay, and Jeff Garcia, a close friend he considers his mentor. Fear not, Gradkowski is only 25, but know show to play the media game. If Gruden or Garcia said anything incendiary regarding the Raiders, he’ll never tell.

“I talk to Jeff every week, and coach Gruden sent me a text,” Gradkowski said. “I told him he was doing a good job on Monday Night Football. It’s god to know those guys are watching and keeping an eye out, and I’m just excited to be out here and be able to play.”

As for replacing Garcia after Garcia made it clear he wanted out, Gradkowski said, “It’s crazy how things work out and that’s the nature of this business. Everything happens for a reason. I truly believe that, and I just take it as it comes.”

– Gradkowski’s father still works at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette _ where he worked at one time with the father of Dan Marino.

“I actually didn’t get to meet Dan Marino until after my rookie season, and it was a neat thing,” Gradkowski said.

– Rather than refute the commonly held belief that the Raiders have an inability handle success, Cable said the only way to change the perception is to win two in a row.

“This league is about consistency,” Cable said. “It’s a player or a team being able to perform consistently, and that’s really what we’re shooting for. I think for us to get where we want to be, that’s the real last piece here. And the only way to do it is to do it.”

After the Raiders beat the Eagles and before a 38-0 loss to the Jets, Cable rebuked the notion _ most recently proffered by Showtime commentator and ex-Raider Warren Sapp _ that the Raiders were at their worst after a win.

Punter Shane Lechler, asked about it Tuesday, looked at the results and sided with Sapp.

“I agree. Especially over the last six years, you win one, and the way it’s approached the next week . . . and it’s not about the staff, it’s in here,” Lechler said. “Things aren’t handle the right way. Guys become real cool . . . I hate to say it, but after the Philadelphia, people read press clippings. It was one game.”

– With Jon Alston ruled out with concussion symptoms and Isaiah Ekejiuba not practicing with an ankle injury, the Raider would be without two key special teams players and the possibility exists that Slade Norris could be activated. If the Raiders deem Alston’s condition seriously enough, he could be headed for injured reserve.

That would mean two key special teams veterans would be replaced by two players fresh off the practice squad _ David Nixon and Norris.

Nixon was promoted the day before the Bengals game after having a solid training camp as an undrafted free agent out of Brigham Young and being signed to the practice squad.

“I knew Jon Alston wasn’t feeling well throughout the week, but I had no inkling,” Nixon said. “I got the call, came in, signed the contract, met with (John Fassel), went over the scheme, and not only was I on the roster, I was active and was going to play.”

Nixon was on two of the four special teams and played on all of them once Ekejiuba left with an ankle injury.

– Cowboys wide receiver Miles Austin is a symbol of hope for special teams players. He did little else for the better part of two years for Dallas and has exploded on to the scene this season with 35 receptions for 679 yards and seven touchdowns. That’s only five less catches than all the Raiders wide receivers combined, more yards, and five more touchdowns.

– Here’s how Charles Woodson characterized his stay with the Raiders on the Jim Rome Show recently:

“It’s always been kind of wild and crazy. But when I came in, I think it was a little better under Gruden and general manager Bruce Allen. They had pretty good control on things. And you know, we had some good players, so regardless of how wild and crazy it was, we had some players out there that could just flat out get it done. So we played through a lot of the negative stuff. Now, that’s not the case. Now they have some good players, but it’s nowhere near the talent we had when we were winning.”

As usual, Woodson effectively cuts to the heart of the matter. The Raiders “talent” has not been all its been made out to be over the last six years.

And as usual, Woodson leaves out the fact that he didn’t exactly dedicate himself to the cause once the ship started sinking. Played his heart out on Sundays, but not a real grinder during the week, either in practice or in preparation.

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  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder

    4evaRaider Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 7:55 am
    And I’m playing Exla NEXT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    —————————-
    It should be close unless you bench Warner. lol

    This is tough, I want Grad to do well but not against me.

  • centurionWR87

    Yeh but will Al actually pick up a QB in the offseason? He’s going with Jamarcus for at least a couple more seasons i’d say… But starting Gradkowski is for sure better than starting Russell atm. Russell needs to watch and learn…

    I think calling him Garbagekowski is a bit harsh, I’d like to see you guys try be QB for the Raiders :P

  • Canadian Raider

    Your just a big mouth Dakota inbred go blow Koby this is a raider site not a queer site

  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder

    Canadian Raider Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 8:00 am
    Your just a big mouth Dakota inbred go blow Koby this is a raider site not a queer site
    ———————-
    Then what are you doing here?

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    Canadian Raider Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 7:57 am
    Listen to Dakota inbred, he wants Pennigton a 2 time surgery guy with a arm as strong as Dakotas, good choice phuck head good knowledge retard. You get a mobile QB in the 2 round of the draft cut fatso and build the lines thats what you do idiot.
    _____________________________

    Actually that is not a bad idea. But I doubt Al will be drafting anymore QBs for a while. He will be running back to his previous policy of signing vet QBs. Russell scared him too much to draft and attempt to develop another QB.

    I see that the extra time in special ed might be paying off for you!

  • raiderzmaverick

    Based on the turnout at games and the appearance of our blogs, we put more energy into bashing fellow fans than cheering for our team.

  • http://blstb.msn.com/i/55/90A2853B6CFBCC2AFC987BB18B832.jpg vegas raider

    I heard on local radio out here, that if a QB came into the game and spiked the ball to stop the clock, his stats would be 0/1 0 yards and 53 QB rating. They noted that is a higher rating than what Jamarcus has for the year, LMAO!!!

  • centurionWR87

    What’s the point of this argument?! Let’s talk Raiders!

  • centurionWR87

    Nice quote Vegas Raider, let’s hope JR is tuning in!

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    vegas raider Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 8:02 am
    I heard on local radio out here, that if a QB came into the game and spiked the ball to stop the clock, his stats would be 0/1 0 yards and 53 QB rating. They noted that is a higher rating than what Jamarcus has for the year, LMAO!!!
    ______________________________

    Schyt, that is depressing.

  • Canadian Raider

    Hey Dakota I cant believe that you said I had a good idea, I wont bash you on this comment, lol

  • raiderzmaverick

    # vegas raider Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 8:02 am

    I heard on local radio out here, that if a QB came into the game and spiked the ball to stop the clock, his stats would be 0/1 0 yards and 53 QB rating. They noted that is a higher rating than what Jamarcus has for the year, LMAO!!!
    ————————————–
    OUCH

  • centurionWR87

    Can we beat Dallas guys? I really think there’s a chance, especially considering they have no offence and our defence isn’t too bad..

  • raiderzmaverick

    # centurionWR87 Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 8:08 am

    Can we beat Dallas guys? I really think there’s a chance, especially considering they have no offence and our defence isn’t too bad..
    ————————————————-
    Can we beat Dallas…yes….will we….I don’t know. History shows we’ll be blown out this game. But, I have to think that things are looking better and that we won’t revert to a blow-out loss.

    I actually think with the energy we have now we can do it.

  • Trolls 35 Raiders 0

    Plunketthead Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 6:07 am
    BHP

    Can you get me tickets to see the Raidettes autograph session?
    I am in love

    http://www.raiders.com/team/cheerleaders/cole/bc5d1919-7419-480d-87e0-9f3c12015a40

    I :cool: heard that Elway :cool: is dumping his forer wife for this one :lol:

  • Canadian Raider

    Somebody earlier said to go after McNab, He is a good QB but he seems to have 4 or 5 games every year wheres he looks lost. The Eagles every year have a good team for the past 12 years but just cant win it, what apuzzle that teams is. Their fans must feel just as bad as ours.

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    I just hope we play them well enough that I don’t throw up my T-giving dinner while watching the game.

  • http://www.blogcdn.com/www.fanhouse.com/media/2008/04/desmond-howard-425-sm.jpg Bo Schembechler Jackson

    Dakota vs. World again I see…

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    Join the fun Bo.

  • 4evaRaider

    Yep Cole is soo beautifull and she got it going on 2!!!

  • http://www.blogcdn.com/www.fanhouse.com/media/2008/04/desmond-howard-425-sm.jpg Bo Schembechler Jackson

    # vegas raider Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 8:02 am

    I heard on local radio out here, that if a QB came into the game and spiked the ball to stop the clock, his stats would be 0/1 0 yards and 53 QB rating. They noted that is a higher rating than what Jamarcus has for the year, LMAO!!!

    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    Jamarcus can’t throw short passes accurately. If all he ever did was spike the ball to stop the clock, he’d still have 3 or 4 interceptions.

  • Canadian Raider

    I think Dallas will be a hard game for us to win because of the short week, seems to favour them most Thanksgiving games. The only thing that we have going is they have played pretty lousy in their new stadium, I dont think they covered on spread

  • http://Raiders.com RaiderTW

    Guys, guys, guys, it could be worse, we could have Cutlter!!!!

  • centurionWR87

    Agreed Maverik, we do have the energy. And with Gradkowski’s better pocket presence and general care for the football, we’ll keep the ball safe on offence and get the D to make most of the plays, with a nice TD from Murphy again to eek out a win :P – Let’s shut Romo down (but Miles Austin is on my fantasy team :/ )

  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder
  • Canadian Raider

    How about those Broncos, what a joke that team is turning out to be

  • http://blstb.msn.com/i/55/90A2853B6CFBCC2AFC987BB18B832.jpg vegas raider

    I think the whole Josh McDaniel kid genius story-lines, were are tad premature.

  • Trolls 35 Raiders 0

    Canadian Raider Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 8:18 am
    How about those Broncos, what a joke that team is turning out to be

    They :cool: still aren’t cellar dwellers :oops: though :!:

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    5 turnovers in 64 pass attempts is caring for the football?

    I guess it is, but only when compared to Russell.

  • centurionWR87

    Yeh compared to Rus

  • los raiders de don rober

    Jim Rome sucks! He’s the C student that thinks he’s smarter than every one else, pathetic.

  • http://Raiders.com RaiderTW

    JaMarcus reminds me of a Zombie Doug Williams at Tampa Bay.

  • Canadian Raider

    It just shows how quickly a season can get away from you and the teams that care. Last year Titans start 10-0 with Collins and this year 0-6 made the QB change to a QB who was lost in space but turned his life around with hard work and won 4 straight If we beat SD once and beat that KC team at home this season, we had a small chance but a chance. We beat playoff teams like the Eagles and Cincy. and get destroyed at home by the jets and lose to KC.

  • los raiders de don rober

    Jamarcus is gonna be a BIG guy come January, over/under should be at 300 lbs….

  • 4evaRaider

    hey the Denver Broncos beat us every facet of the game jast time we played em.Hopefully we can win that game soo my debt will be paid in full to Happy Troll and I no longer have 2 treat the Denver Broncos with the respect they deserve

  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder

    los raiders de don rober Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 8:28 am
    Jamarcus is gonna be a BIG guy come January, over/under should be at 300 lbs….
    ——————————-
    He might hit that by Sunday after he has Thanksgiving Friday back in Oakland.

  • Larz

    Canadian Raider where are you at?

  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder

    By the looks of JR, he might be over 300 now.

  • Canadian Raider

    Since I wont be on this site tommorrow ten of us are off to Detroit for the game, we go every year to watch blow out after blow out but its a good time. I want to wish all you American Raider fans a happy Thanksgiving

  • http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/63/60563-004-52A399D4.jpg Dakota

    2006 Oakland Raiders 9.75 points per game

    2009 Oakland Raiders 10.8 points per game

    Go Tom Cable Go!

  • Larz

    I’m guessing Windsor Ont.

    I’m out in BC.

  • 4evaRaider

    Those days are over…no matter what Grads is already a good game manager and will be turning into a field general…maybe not here tho…but I see no reason,if Gradkowski the Great is winning most of his games…why jinx it.Maybe he isnt what some want or they just didnt realize his accomplishments in college but the kid is entering 4th year and he could just explode next year.I hope he blows the nfl up…as I do any Raider

  • Raider Dell

    A few items up for discussion.

    Cali has no more tax revenue. The extra 10% will not reduce the defecit down any further. We here in this state are looking at a 20 BILLION DOLLAR defecit. Can anybody spare some coin.

    How many of you really like turkey? I know the deep fry helps, the smoker helps. the cooking by somebody else helps. I can’t stand the bird. My family and I eat beef. I have turkey for the traditional family members who are invited.

    The question is for me? Do I watch the Raider game and should I eat before the game or after?

    All replys will be appreciated.

  • Raider Dell

    4eva

    Had pork steaks last nite, good stuff.

  • 4evaRaider

    Dakota…through 10 games and with 2 td Jmac

  • Trolls 35 Raiders 0

    4evaRaider Says:
    November 25th, 2009 at 8:30 am
    hey the Denver Broncos beat us every facet of the game jast time we played em.Hopefully we can win that game soo my debt will be paid in full to Happy Troll and I no longer have 2 treat the Denver Broncos with the respect they deserve

    That’s why they play the game 4eva :cool:

  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder

    Raiders punter Shane Lechler was called out Tuesday by Cowboys coach Wade Phillips, who said he won’t hit the huge video board at Cowboys Stadium.
    ———————————-
    Smart move. Dare Lechler to go for it and then when the kick is replayed, the special teams are gassed from the replay,

  • http://blstb.msn.com/i/55/90A2853B6CFBCC2AFC987BB18B832.jpg vegas raider

    Put me down as a big fan of Turkey.

    Only really eat it on Thanksgiving, and the cold turkey sandwiches with the leftovers…..can’t wait.

    Turkey, family, booze, Raider football…..come on doesn’t get any better than that!!!

  • 4evaRaider

    I usually have lamb 4 thanks giving and will again.

    If I had a boat it would be lamb and red-snapper and redfish =)

    We all give thanks in our own way

    Game starts at 4:15 so I will have already eaten and just be pickin by that time and Drinking champagne per usual

  • Raider Dell

    Vegas

    I could tell you are a traditional Raider Nation man!

    Go Turkey!!