Part of the Bay Area News Group

Raiders shoot for consolation prize

By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Wednesday, December 29th, 2010 at 2:39 pm in Oakland Raiders.

News, notes and quotes and observations as the Raiders prepare to face the Chiefs Wednesday at Arrowhead Stadium in the 2010 regular-season finale:

– It’s not going to be like 1999, when the Raiders were out of the playoff race at 7-8 but went to Kansas City knowing they could stop the Chiefs from going as well.

But the Raiders are doing their best to convince themselves that finishing with a 6-0 record in the AFC West and .500 overall would be a stepping stone into something special in 2011.

After the 1999 win, the Raiders jumped to 12-4 and began a three-year run of AFC West titles.

How it all works out this time around remains to be seen.

“We all expected a little bit more. We all expected to be in the playoffs,’’ cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha said. “That was our theme coming into the season; that was the goal. In training camp, we were saying it all along, this team was different, this team looks like we’re ready to contend. It’s a big year for us.”

Said quarterback Jason Campbell: “We’re just trying to finsh out this year on the right note, a strong note, finish 8-8 and try to get to 6-0 in our division in our division and go into the offseason feeling good about our last game and getting ready for next year.’’

– Asomugha and Richard Seymour conceded they’re not locks to play in the Pro Bowl Jan. 30 (held the week before the Super Bowl) although they hope to be healthy enough when the time arrives.

– Besides alternates moving up the ladder either because of injuries or players who made the team otherwise occupied with preparing for the Super Bowl the following week, another possible Raiders addition is long-snapper Jon Condo.

He was added last year on Jan. 19 in the days leading up to the game as a “need’’ player.

— Sounds as if Jacoby Ford, named the AFC special teams player of the week for his 99-yard kickoff return and 188 return yards against Indianapolis, could add punt return duties next season.

Ford could have conceivably been a Pro Bowler as a rookie this year if he returned punts with anywhere near the effectiveness that he returned kickoffs. The Pro Bowl return specialist (this year Tennessee’s Marc Mariani) typically does both specialities.

“We have been kicking him the ball,’’ coach Tom Cable said.“We did that in camp, in OTAs and all that, but were never really comfortable with that. As the year has gone on, he’s getting more and more comfortable. That certainly may be something for his future.’’

As for Cable’s future, he sidestepped the issue again when asked if he thought the outcome of the Chiefs game could play into his job security.

“I don’t think about that,’’ Cable said. `I think it determines if we can get it to 8-8 and 6-0 in the division. That’s really our goal so that’s what we’re trying to do. We’re focused on that.”

– Shane Lechler was stumping for Sebastian Janikowski, with Baltimore’s Billy Cundiff getting the nod at place kicker for the Pro Bowl.

“Not to have Seabass after the year he’s had, that’s very disappointing,’’ Lechler said. “I know he’s disappointed. I’m disappointed for him. There would be a whole lot of head coaches around the league I guarantee would take him. They won’t say it to their guy’s face, but they would take him over their guy right now. That’s just how it is. That’s how good he is.’’

— The difference between the division title-winning Chiefs and the Raiders?
Cable thinks it’s turnovers. The Raiders have 25 turnovers, more than twice as many as Kansas City (12).

He thinks it’s the biggest reason the Raiders have given up so many points.

The biggest area that I feel like we’re short is turnovers. We’ve done a nice job of scoring points, moving the ball, although erratic at times, but compared to where we were before we’ve done a nice job,’’ Cable said. “We need to be more consistent from game to game that way but the turnover thing is what really hurt this football team in terms of giving people extra opportunities.’’

The Raiders have given up 30 or more points six times, losing all six games. In those games, they have 13 turnovers and six takeaways. Overall, the Raiders are at a minus-3 in turnover margin.

— Although they took the field for warmups, right tackle Langston Walker (concussion) and Darren McFadden (ankle) did not practice along with Seymour.

Wide receiver Johnnie Lee Higgins (ankle), Nick Miller (ankle), cornerback Chris Johnson (groin) and safety Mike Mitchell (ribs) were limited.

Asomugha (ankle), and Zach Miller (foot) were full go.

— With an early game Sunday, the Raiders again moved up their schedule as they did before they played Jacksonville, getting meetings in before a 9:45 a.m. practice.

The Raiders started well against the Jaguars, leading 17-7 at halftime, but didn’t finish.

“I thought we fired a great shot at Jacksonville, in terms of our effort, and the energy level and the focus and all those things, I felt like were there,’’ Cable said. “And we adapted to it quite well by Friday of that week. And here we’re doing the same thing this week and kind of went right into it this week like no big deal. So, I think it’s something that will stick to us for the future.”

— Chiefs coach Todd Haley told Bay Area reporters by conference call he had no intention of backing off to keep players healthy against Oakland.

“Maybe some teams can think another way but we’re clearly not in that position,’’ Haley said. “We need to take advantage of every practice day we have and every game we have.’’

Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel said: “Absolutely we plan on playing it like a regular game and I’m planning on playing 60 minutes and I think everyone else in the locker room is too. The last thing you want to do is go out and get your butt kicked by the Raiders on Sunday and lose any momentum we’ve built up to this point.’’

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  • PurpleDrank81

    KK Plz dont tell me you chased Nmandi out of town?

  • http://www.pro-football-reference.com/ KoolKell

    Nnamdi’s a class act with people. 2nd time I’ve see him up there.

  • PurpleDrank81

    I wanna know who the white was? Brad Roll???

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    Aso is a class act period.

  • http://www.pro-football-reference.com/ KoolKell

    The white guy 6’3″ 210-20? Sweats. He could have been staff. They were all looking for something to eat.

    They must be working late tonite??? Film???

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    My comment is awaiting moderation?
    It was on the Tonight Show moderator. Try to get out once in a while.

  • PurpleDrank81

    Randy Hanson?Brad Roll?

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    PurpleDrank81 Says:
    December 29th, 2010 at 5:01 pm
    Which QB would you draft?

    Cam Newton?
    Ryan Mallet?

    =======================================================

    I’d like Mallet.
    Don’t care for running quarterbacks-they tend to get injured, although Vick was a suprise.
    Of course, he probably had a lot of experience running away from all those angry dogs.

  • PurpleDrank81

    I think Mallet needs to be more accurate even though is accuracy has been gettin better with each better.

    I like running QB’s with our o-line because it give us alil more time to let a play open up. Defenses are getting faster and faster and we need a guy who is some what mobile..

    Im happy with either guy as long as we dont reach for them…

    Mallet is a Al Davis type of guy?

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    Kevin Flynn Says:
    December 29th, 2010 at 4:55 pm
    McNabb is just a capable JaMarcus Russell, nothing more, nothing less.

    =======================================================

    Surely that is a contradiction in terms!

  • PurpleDrank81

    *****I think Mallet needs to be more accurate even though is accuracy has been gettin better with each better.***** Murdered that

    I think Mallet need to be more accurate even though his accuracy has been gettin better with each year

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    PurpleDrank81 Says:
    December 29th, 2010 at 5:40 pm
    I think Mallet needs to be more accurate
    =======================================================

    That’s true and I hear that he has an attitude.

    On the other hand–
    a. Al got rid of Snake because he had an attitude.
    b. Captain Checkdown is relatively accurate and has great stats-which he works on once the game is lost.

  • PurpleDrank81

    Mallet=Rivers Attitude

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    We could use some of that Rivers attitude.

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    HEY DORKO BOB!
    You out there?

  • PurpleDrank81

    What a crying Poor Sport???We could use some of Rivers Talent but his attitude is terrible? And Mallet isnt as talented as Rivers. So when you get a no talented rivers with a bad attitude you end up with Ryan Leaf

  • PurpleDrank81

    I havent heard from in awhile

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    Well, Ryan Leaf had an attitude but it was fostered by his loving mother.

    The attitude of a guy like Snake is something completely different.
    Hard to see how you can compare Leaf with Rivers.
    If we had Rivers, we would really like that.

  • PurpleDrank81

    Because they both have terrible Attitudes…

    Snake had a rebel attitude

    Rivers has a If I dont get my way im gonna cry and blame everything on my team attitude

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    Well, I guess there’s truth there PurpleDrank81, but Rivers is a baby who gets it done whereas Leaf was just a baby.

  • chiefsagain

    I’m not prone to following reader comments on other teams – especially the Raiders – but I’ve enjoyed the ones on this article. A lot of insightful comments and no whining. As as old-school Chiefs fan, I have mixed emotions about seeing a playoff quality Raiders team visit Arrowhead, but it’s great to see the Chiefs/Raiders rivalry mean something again. I look forward to truly hating the Raiders again in the future. :)

  • PurpleDrank81

    Haha Rivers only gets it done in the regular season. He’s still tryin to do it in the Playoffs and cant…

    Im really hoping we draft a QB in the Middle rounds and Im dying for Austin Pettis on this team

  • RaiderhaterinKC

    What? The Raiders aren’t going to add to their consecutive losing streak of 11 or more loss seasons in a row?

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    chiefsagain Says:
    December 29th, 2010 at 6:06 pm
    I’m not prone to following reader comments on other teams – especially the Raiders – but I’ve enjoyed the ones on this article. A lot of insightful comments and no whining. As as old-school Chiefs fan, I have mixed emotions about seeing a playoff quality Raiders team visit Arrowhead, but it’s great to see the Chiefs/Raiders rivalry mean something again. I look forward to truly hating the Raiders again in the future.

    =======================================================

    I hear you chiefsagain.

    The dischargers are just upstarts but You’re going to get the living hell knocked out of you next Sunday ’cause the Raiders are coming to town.
    It’s good to have a KC team worth depising again.

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    Purpledrank81:

    I’m sure hoping for a quarterback in the next draft too.
    Funny how Al does so well in the middle rounds but not so well with that first.

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    We beat KC and we’re 6-0 in the effin division.

    That “Raiders shoot for Consolation Prize” title is crap Jerry.

  • lefty12

    No to Newton and Mallet.No to any SEC QB.

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    Take it easy PurpleDrank81.

    It’s 2:35 in the UK and time for bed.

    RAIDERS UBER ALLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • PurpleDrank81

    I was bored and started lookin at Mock Drafts…about 17 out of 20 has the Niners takin Cam Newton

  • Roch R

    Dead Kennedy’s …nice

  • PurpleDrank81

    What about Jake Locker??? He seems like he’s fallin down some Draft Boards? Anybody no anythin on Locker?

  • Roch R

    England Raider, I may poach the “RAIDERS UBER ALLES” that’s a good one.

  • PurpleDrank81

    “Oakland Raiders ich liebe Dich ueber alles in der Welt”

  • PurpleDrank81

    Uncle Kell taught me german when I was a child

  • GoodOle00

    2. RMR you have an amusingly bleak outlook

  • hwnrdr

    I hope that the Raiders go in there with enough fight in them to let KC and the rest of the AFC West know that THE RAIDERS ARE GOING TO DOMINATE THE WEST! Hopefully next year, they learn how to win in the rest of the divisions!

  • PurpleDrank81

    I say they just let me draft this year……Ofcourse I’ll use some of your guy’s output….I was rigth on the Lamarr houston and Jacoby Ford Picks last year…

  • PurpleDrank81

    Ne1 out there

  • edward teach

    If Hue Jackson deliberately called the game the way he did to sabotage Cable and get the head coaching job he should be fired immediately.

    If he called the game the way he thought he should have to win the game, then he isn’t qualified to be the head coach.

    In the end it doesn’t matter. He called a stupid game and that’s not going to get him promoted.

  • PurpleDrank81

    1st thing we need to do during the off season is fire Brad Roll

  • crazyru

    I registered here for the sole purpose to say, NO WAY to McNabb. I live in philly and have watched almost everyone of McNabbs games. He CANNOT throw a short pass and is not mobile enough for our offensive line. He’d get killed here. Campbell is so much better than McNabb at this point in their respective careers.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3ng4yHw2xk&feature=PlayList&p=E565EF0DE2F587FA&playnext= Raider75

    Ryan Mallett will be a great NFL QB.

    Print that.

  • PurpleDrank81

    If we sign him raider75 then I’ll jump behind him and support him but everytime I see him in a interview I wanna fly to Arkansas and slap the Dog s#!t out of him

  • hwnrdr

    I will agree that Purple…FIRE BRAD ROLL!

  • PurpleDrank81

    I wanna punch Brad Roll rite in the hamstring… I’ve seen better Athletic training at the Pinole Hometown Buffet

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3ng4yHw2xk&feature=PlayList&p=E565EF0DE2F587FA&playnext= Raider75

    # PurpleDrank81 Says:
    December 29th, 2010 at 7:37 pm

    If we sign him raider75 then I’ll jump behind him and support him but everytime I see him in a interview I wanna fly to Arkansas and slap the Dog s#!t out of him
    ……

    lol… kinda like Phillip Rivers, Tom Brady, and Cutler.

    I would like to slap all those dudes.

  • TerrapinRaider

    Suggesting that Hue ‘sabortaged’ the game is pretty ridiculous. You don’t win HC jobs by losing games.

    Yes, maybe there were too many stretch plays ran vs Indy – maybe; but overall our run game was getting stopped in its tracks and screens were getting snuffed out. This put us in too many 3rd and long situations.

    In case you didn’t notice the Colts were wreaking havoc in the backfield. The Oline was getting thier azz handed to them. In these situations you have to call screens and quick outs to slow them down. That is what Hue was calling to protect that line.

    Lastly, I don’t buy the argument that MBush should get the inside stuff and DMC the outside stuff and receiver duties. Its baloney. DMC has proven to be a superb inside and outside runner. The guy is a dynamic pro bowl caliber player. You feed him as much as you can.

  • PurpleDrank81

    I think I would drop an elbow on brady from on top of a bus. Cutler deserves to get hit in the face with a putter and I would tie Rivers to a goal post and beat him with Tommy Kelly’s jock strap until he started to bleed and then run over both of his ankles with a ZAMBONI

  • buckeyeraider

    ‘Sup fellas?

  • PurpleDrank81

    Buckeye…..My main man!! Quick question what do you think of Devier Posey???