Spoiler? Not Greg Ellis


There has been some sentiment in the Raiders locker room for knocking the Ravens from a postseason berth, much as they did to the Bucs to close out 2008.

“It don’t motivate me to be no spoiler. I have to be honest with you,” Ellis said. “I want to be the one that’s going there and somebody’s trying to spoil my stuff.

“But I’ve got other reasons that still allow me to play hard, and so should other guys. But being a spoiler, that may do it for some people, but to win the game, that’s what we want to do. Last week we didn’t have a chance to spoil anything for Cleveland but you still want to win that football game.”

Lechler, Asomugha react to Pro Bowl

A year ago, with the announcement earlier in the day, the Raiders held a Tuesday press conference with punter Shane Lechler and cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha to address their selection to the Pro Bowl.

This time around, they let the news marinate for a day, with Lechler and Nnamdi back in the press room.

“Who’s getting the franchise tag?” cracked Asosomugha as the press conference ended.

The comment was in reference to last year, when speculation was that either Asomugha or Lechler would be designated the franchise player by the Raiders. I asked them at the podium which one would get the tag and they somewhat nervously looked at each other and didn’t answer.

As it turned out, Al Davis got them both signed, with Asomugha getting $45.3 million over three years ($28.5 million guaranteed) and Lechler $16 million over four ($9 million guaranteed), the most money ever paid to players at their respective positions.

And while it was a boatload of money, there’s something to be said for writing checks to known commodities rather than sinking it into trade acquisition DeAngelo Hall or unrestricted free agents such as Gibril Wilson and Javon Walker.

Lechler was voted in for the fifth time, but wasn’t taking his selection for granted despite a 51.1 yard gross average and 44.0 net which is the best of all time.

“Anytime you get voted in by your peers and players around the league, and fans, it’s always a great honor,” Lechler said. We’re going to a new site this year in Miami, so we get to see what that’s all about. I was looking forward to it and I was hoping my name would be called, but didn’t know for sure. You never know.”

Asomugha, with just one interception and four passes defensed, also wasn’t sure what to think.

“I wasn’t worried about it but I was like, `Let me wait before I make my plans,’ ” Asomugha said.

Neither player is sure what to make of the new site and date, with the game being played the week before the Super Bowl. With Indianapolis tight end Dallas Clark and San Diego’s Antonio Gates each having a chance to make the Super Bowl, Lechler hopes a spot will open up for Zach Miller, an alternate along with Richard Seymour.

In any event, it’s more about being there than playing in the game.

“The game is just fun. No one takes it seriously. We go out at practice and guys are jiving around. It’s really the experience more so than it is the game,” Asomugha said. “It’s kind of like when you go fishing. It’s more so just the conversations and that experience than how many fish you catch.”


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • 860Todd Christensen


  • 860Todd Christensen

    The NY post has us trashing Balt. Me too!

  • DKnight007

    DKnight007 Says:
    December 30th, 2009 at 1:31 pm
    curiousgIII Says:
    December 30th, 2009 at 1:09 pm
    what is everyone’s fascination with drafting a safety.

    dkinght007…didn’t micah johnson blow out his knee in his bowl game? i know al reaches but he was only rated the #10 ILB before the injury

    Don’t know….let me research it.

    I haven’t been watching the crap bowls since the BS system ruins college football.

  • DKnight007

    carnitas Says:
    December 30th, 2009 at 1:08 pm
    suh is going to be a bust. he is to small for an nfl dt and the raiders have plenty of de. i would draft an right tackle with the pick or the best middle linebacker

    Nah! Doubt Suh ends up being a bust.

    He will beat his man most of the time in one on ones and he will end up being a player offensive lines will have to account for and double team. Suh will end up being better than both Kelly and Warren, thats for damn sure.

  • DKnight007

    Tyvon Branch should be an alternate at safety also…..

  • Michael Crabtree has caught 45 balls so far.

    Darrius Heyward Bey, 9.

    Where did all the Craptree jokes go?

  • mistic1

    Imagine dhb and mac 20 running that ghost reverse motion, defenses would be in trouble. We need trestman. No.2 does well throwing slants and attacking seams, trestman is a perfect fit. Any of the top d tackles would be good I like the kid from Kentucky, and Syracuse. Pair him with a good MLB, we will finally have a solid defense.

  • El Tato

    Tyvon has no INTs and plays for a 5 wins team and the 27th defense in the NFL, there is no way he goes to the Pro Bowl this year.

    Anyway, he should be there for consideration if he plays at the same level next season. An ESPN writer said he was playing at a Pro Bowl level this season.

  • El Tato

    If we could select Brandon Spikes in round 2, I will be happy.

  • mistic1

    Please no safties, we are set there o line d line and MLB that is what we need. Along with a new hc.

  • mistic1

    Go o line early d line and MLB later. This draft is packed with quality d tackles. A right tackle or rguard should be our first pick, even a center would be good.

  • 860Todd Christensen

    Kell, we have a QB that throws 338 yds and can’t put 6 on the board. We are hexed……

  • carnitas

    DKnight007 i have to disagree with you. he has bad knees and the exact same size as dick seymore. unless he gains 30+ lbs i would consider him a de

  • 4evaRaider

    any one sportin the “newest” M.Craptree wear?

  • Frank YoooooooLLL

    Asomugha is a great player and all, but isnt it about time for him to bruise his little arm again?

  • toec

    someone step on DHB’s foot again, please

  • Frank YoooooooLLL

    KoolKell, Craptree is a 49er now fugghim…………

  • 16yearsold16yearfan


    for everybody that doesnt understand taht there wont be many good fa next year

  • Crabtree has caught 45 balls, though. Bey, 9.

    Louis Murphy the 4th rounder has 28.

    Percy Harvin 53
    Jeremey Maclin 52
    Hakeem Nicks 46

    No. 7 overall, top receiver taken, Bey, 9 passes????

  • DHB back on the practice field…..


  • M Lonetree

    Asomugha’s comments about the Pro-Bowl being a “gone fishin'” exercise needs a Charles Barkley and Kenny-the-Jet photo-doctoring with all the Pro-Bowlers in appropriate garb.

  • CaptainBlack

    4evaRaider Says:
    December 30th, 2009 at 2:05 pm
    any one sportin the “newest” M.Craptree wear?

    umm, who cares what folks are wearing, he performs, unlike DHB. Great pick, Al!

  • CaptainBlack

    4evaRaider Says:
    December 30th, 2009 at 2:05

    This is the same poster who would not answer my questions. Why is Nick Miller on the 53 when he has been injured (?) all year?

  • Nnamdi21

    HATE the new location, HATE the fact its BEFORE the super bowl. Always liked one last outro of football after the “big game”.

    F’in stupid because what if teams like Minesota make the SB? EIGHT guys are NOT going to play the week before the biggest game of their lives and risk injury.

    F’in stupid, but it will likely be a success because morons like us will watch it because of the 2 week delay to the SB.

    Lets hope these stupid basterds don’t extend the season to 18 f’in games this off.

  • M Lonetree

    KoolKell, 909,

    what the point of pi$$ing on the young man? DHB didn’t ask for what he got. He doesn’t have a bad attitude. If he wasn’t worth the pick it isn’t his fault. Crap on Al if you wish for making the choice, but the kid does not deserve all the slights and negative comments and shyte that people here give him.

  • Nnamdi21

    Bey was known to need polish and pairing him with SanJay was a recipe for faliure, but still waaay under performed.

    Can’t foget though that the guys on your list have

    A resurging Alex Smith

    Bret Favre

    Donovan McNabb

    and Eli Manning throwing the ball to them.

    We’ve got Russell sprout and JP Losman…

    None the less it would be Homeric to disagree with the fact Bey has been an emBEYrassment so far.

  • Nnamdi21

    Watch Schilens get hurt and we send in Walker and he has a 20 catch 4 TD game. LMAO!

  • M Lonetree

    Excuse me? People pi$$ all over the place in here.

  • Yeah Russell is everyone’s favorite whipping boy.

    But Louis Murphy caught 28 passes, Zack Miller caught 59.

  • Daven

    Most of Murphy’s catches were clutch as were alot of Zachs catches. I want to see them both have big games this sunday!

  • E_CULB

    Troy Smith wants out of B-More, he was set to start before Flacco but got sick and the rest is history. Anybody think the we should make a move?