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Raiders shoot for consolation prize

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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Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • TerrapinRaider

    Some of DMC biggest runs this year came from running inside. I just don’t get the argument.

    That monster highlight reel run vs Jax where he spinned out of a tackle and stiff-armed a guy for a TD was an inside run.

    His longest run vs Indy was an inside run for 26yds.

    I just completely disagree with that argument.

  • buckeyeraider

    PD81,
    Posey’s OK. He’s been OSU’s big play WR the last couple of years. Had some big drops though. I don’t think he’s anywhere near as good as Santonio Holmes was.

  • PurpleDrank81

    We need a solid possesion reciever….But man that Blackmon kid impresses me more and more when I watch his tape

  • buckeyeraider

    That sucked Holmes went to the Jets for just a 4th. That guy played some good football in NY. What a steal.

    I know the dude was suspended the first four games, and all. Therefore he probably violated Cable’s “No knuckleheads” rule.

    But, damn..the guy just likes to smoke a little weed. As do a lot of NFL WR’s..and players in general. Not like he shot somebody. Besides, legalize it..Right O?

    I understand the Raiders (and almost every other NFL club) avoiding a guy in the league’s substance abuse program. I still think he’s worth the gamble for a 4th. Guy makes some clutch catches.

  • TerrapinRaider

    Chances are we draft OT, C, WR, DB

    The Oline in Oakland will be see some new faces:

    Walker or Draft pick (RT)
    Campbell (RG)
    Draft pick (C)
    Gallery (LG)
    Veldheer (LT)

  • buckeyeraider

    Terrapin,
    I’m hoping this years draft is tilted much more towards the defense. I think this young offense just needs to grow together. They have the #2 ranked run game. Just need to get the QB and WR’s in synch.

    Not sure why so many people are all for replacing Satele at C. Guy got off to a rough start in Oaktown but is playing much better.

    I just hope Bruce Campbell is ready to step up and hopefully replace CC at RG.

  • TerrapinRaider

    Curious …what to think of the prospect of moving Veldheer to Center next year and drafting another OT in the 2nd?

    Veldheer has done a pretty good job at LT. I don’t know his stats. But he could be a dominate center. Cable just screwed up starting him there without a lot of game experience and Henderson needed to be replaced.

    Just a fantasy thought

  • TerrapinRaider

    Satele has been better this year; however, Cable has shown an inclination to replace him and tried to with Veldheer. I think this says that he’s not satisfied with that position.

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

    Locker looked really impressive just now in the interview.

    Hope he finds success in the NFL.

  • buckeyeraider

    I think the defense, while playing well at times…needs the most attention this offseason.

    I think they need another OLB to complement McClain and Wimbley. Groves seems to be a stopgap at best. The guy didn’t make much of an impact at all. He wasn’t horrible, but I think the position can be upgraded.

    I like the Raiders two young DE’s ends in Houston and Shonasty. They are both fairly balanced..strong against run and pass. Both should get even better.

    I would like to see the Raiders add a pure speed rusher. A pass rush specialist for 3rd downs. Kick Houston inside on 3rd. Somebody that can put his hand in the dirt and then just beat the OT around the edge. Make offenses account for him. Slide protection his way.

    I think that is something this defense lacks. They have a lot of sacks spread amongst a lot of players, but no dominant speed rusher. One reason they give up so damn many 3rd and long conversions,IMO.

  • TerrapinRaider

    I have no quarrels with drafting defense except for the fact that we do not have a 1st round pick and I would think that pick would likely be for a DE. We have a mid/late 2nd round pick.

    By that time I highly doubt a DE will be on the board capable of cracking our starting lineup. And thats what we need.

    On the other hand there may be quality OTs, Cs, WRs, and DBs …possibly DTs (but they won’t crack the starting lineup ahead of Kelly/Seymour …maybe not even Big John). Thats why I say the probability is we draft OT, C, WR and DB.

  • TerrapinRaider

    OLB is a possibility. Maybe Jarvis Moss shows up and solves our DE need?

  • buckeyeraider

    The number one thing they need to add this offseason, either through the draft or FA is a #2 corner to pair with Nnamdi,IMO. That is, if they are going to play old school Raider man to man most of the time. And they probably should, because they look absolutely horrible when they try to play zone.

    90% of NFL quarterbacks not named Rivers are going to avoid throwing at #21 like the plague. So that other corner is going to get picked on, and worked over.

    Stanford Routt frustrates me to no end. He is the prototypical corner. He has the perfect size and speed for the position. He just seems to have no instincts.

    He will actually have very nice coverage, but he just doesn’t do the little things like turn and look for the ball. He has an infuriating habit of grabbing the WR at the last second, and drawing a cotly PI. Even when he doesn’t need to.

    What’s even worse is, he seems to have the rep amongst league refs as a player who grabs and holds because he gets the most costly, untimely penalties imaginable. Calls a lot of corners wouldn’t get.

    Playing opposite Nnamdi is a tough gig, but if he hasn’t mastered the techniques of the pos. by now, I don’t know if he ever will.

    For this Raider defense to work, they need a Lester hayes to Nnams’ Mike Haynes, if you will.

  • YoungAmerican

    I think McClain has been a complete bust this year. He doesn’t have the motor to be an effective MLB (ala Matthews, Cushing) Both have been dominant for 2 years. McClain had only 1 pick and did not cause a single fumble!!!! He is not a playmaker.

    ——————-

    Matthews and Cushing are not MLBs, they’re WLBs. Cushing played MLB when DeMeco Ryans went down to injury, and disappeared there.

  • buckeyeraider

    I cannot believe it’s week 17 already. Football season goes by so fast. Seems like it takes forever to get here and then it’s over in the blink of an eye.

    Hopefully next year the Raiders are playing well into Juanuary. Extend the season a little.

    G’night fellas.

  • http://atm Raider O

    Right! Legalize it!!!
    Holmes was traded for a 5th RD pick.

  • toec

    Raiders schedule next year (if I got this right):

    2X division opponents KC, SD, Denver
    NFC East (Dallas, Philly, Wash, NY Giants)
    AFC east (Pats, NY Jets, Miami, Buffalo)

    assuming 3rd place finish:
    Cleveland Browns
    Tennessee Titans

    If 2nd place (raiders beat KC, Chargers lose to Denver)
    Baltimore Ravens
    Jacksonville Jaguars

    That’s a whole lot of east coast trips :(

  • djohnnyg

    “We’re probably the youngest offense in the NFL,” Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell said, “(but) we rank 10th in the NFL. That’s a good accomplishment.”
    -Jason Campbell

    A “winner” QB doesn’t say something like that. A “winner” doesn’t care what their offensive ranking was they care if they win games and make the playoffs.

    Would Brady, Rivers, Brees, heck even Vick or Roethlisberger make a statement like that? NO!!!

  • djohnnyg

    Raiders are going nowhere until they get rid of this “it’s okay to lose” mentality. They go nowhere until they refuse to accept 7-9 as a “pretty good season” nor accept their 30th ranked QB considering himself doing “a pretty good job”.

    Yes the Raiders have improved this year, but they seem to be okay with average or just below.

    You can’t be so easy to accept losing and expect to be a playoff team.

    Quit patting yourselves on the back Raiders.

  • priesttj

    False statements are just that, he’s not saying he’s satisfied you are. He wants to win a SB I’m sure does he need to say it everytime he asseses the season.

    Armond just to respond to your DMC take. No one is saying the guy isn’t a every down back He showed that he is. But my point is we have two outstanding HB’s and I want use both of them. DMC is great in openfield and I would get him out there as much as possible with the passing game. No knock on him at all but he can help us in a lot of ways, why not use him?

    I would get him 25+ touches a game and run Bush inside more. Use Ford in the slot and DHB as a flanker. Move the chains with ZM and you would score 25 pergame just with those weapons.

  • djohnnyg

    This isn’t rocket science.

    Winners win, losers lose.

    Cambell-Used to losing. Hs he ever had a winning season as a pro?

    Cable- Horrible record as a coach at Idaho and no winning seasons as a pro.

    These guys are used to losing and it’s become a part of who they are.

    The only “culture change” this org. needs is replacing the ones who are used to and accept losing and bring in the people who are used to winning and don’t accept losing as a neccessary fact of football life and who don’t pat themselves on the back for acheiving meaningless statistics.

    We need WINNERS.

  • priesttj

    Just as soon as you can get a QB capable of greatness I’m all for it. In the meantime Campbell has played well and has been a stabilizing force at QB. If you can get Brady in here let us know and while you’re at it get Larry Fitzgerald and Dwight Freeny.

  • djohnnyg

    For all the “progress” this team has made this year, and yes there has been some. We are no longer a joke and have acheived a level of respectability by improving the overall win loss record, and have shown flashes of excellence we haven’t seen in a long time. That’s great. Problem is we peaked at 5-4 and all of a sudden we are headed down the tubes yet again and are sinking AGAIN.

    We lose Sunday and it’s a 2-5 finish. Hardly a “Raider Resurgence” and concern should be we are going back to exactly where we were before this season.

    It’s not how you start it’s how you finish right? Losing five of your last seven shows a team on the decline yet AGAIN.

  • priesttj

    Wwe’re giving up way too many points the defense has been really bad lately.

  • priesttj

    How do you give up 200 yards rushing to Indy??

  • BigLefty

    Matthews and Cushing are not MLBs, they’re WLBs. Cushing played MLB when DeMeco Ryans went down to injury, and disappeared there.

    hey YoungOne

    I don’t care if they play Mike, Sam, or Will. They were 1st round LB’s and have motors that dont quit like Rolando’s
    Its as if he’s trying to power his Caddy with a VW engine

    There is nothing there!!!!!

  • priesttj

    why you bhave a problem rolando?

  • priesttj

    The best thing about this season was the 3 straight wins and beating the Chargers twice. Other than that we didn’t do much. We should’ve played much better vs the Cards and SF and definitely should’ve beat Miami.

    Losing those games are the reason we’re not a playoff team. If you can’t beat bad teams you don’t deserve to go. You’re just not good enough, next year they have to beeat teams they should beat and win in the division again. We’re as good as most teams in the playoffs talent wise but we lack confidence when games are on the line. It showed in SF, AZ, Jax and at home vs Miami that’s 4 loses if you win you have 11 wins looking for the 12th.

  • djohnnyg

    Again it’s that whole “winning thing”. Talent is there as they always say about Oakland, but when u are so used to coming up short it becomes a part of you that appears is difficult to shake.

    By the way, did the Raiders complete ONE SINGLE LONG TD PASS ALL YEAR? I know we had short passes that turned into a long TD, but I don’t recall one single deep route long toss for a TD.

    With all this speed we have, you’d think there’d be a at least a few of those.

  • Que

    I havent been on here in sometime, I sat and watched this young team with ups and downs like I said sometime ago. I remember all the back and forth of who should be starting qb. I remember saying cable I didnt like the way he handled the qb situation and you dont come out and say Garcia is the starter even when he s hurt and you need campbell to save your season and butt. Now look at everything, Campbell has lots of questions still and the question of will he go down field but you know I still stick to my guns. I wish Cable to be gone and I still wish for AL to do whats right, Gruden , Callahan as line coach and floyd reece as gm old tenn gm. Just continue growing becuase what was acomplished this year was with smoke and mirrors. That Offensive line is not good at all. When it comes time to have to battle REAL teams and Real defenses they get NO PUSH even for the run let alone teh DEEP PASS lol. THe WR arent good at all , we relied on a 7th round 6 foot? Id keep both qbs and still draft another but offensive line is number one on this team C…Tackle ..Guard…and that could be done somewhat with some signings one or two and then draft a qb. Its funny we could have used T.O but many of us was scared. AL do the right again and sign Gruden if it hasnt been too long and get a GM…I have never liked how we for 7 years cant battle and be apart of the tradition of years past of great gms vs NE …PITT…

  • Que

    SMOKE AND MIRRORS

  • Que

    And the thing about Hue Jackson is can he game plan and make adjustment during gm like a gruden also great coaches have the players on guard against certain tendencies during a gm. We get beat by teams tendencies.

  • mikedlopes

    Kaepernick.

  • Just Fire Baby

    Some say we need a C, and a G and T for the right side.

    The Atlanta Falcons, at 12-3 and with a fierce rushing attack, have a 7th round pick at C and two undrafted, multiple-times cut, guys at G and T.

    Tyson Clabo and Harvery Dahl were NFL scrubs before Atlanta, Dahl waived once and floundering on the 49ers practice squad for two years and Clabo waived 4 TIMES!!!!

    It’s the QB!!!

  • Just Fire Baby

    Colts have had 3 left tackles in the last 4 years, settling on a converted college TE and a 6th round pick (Charlie Johnson).

  • hwnrdr

    Good Morning Nation!
    JFB…what’s up bro?

  • Just Fire Baby

    Colts have switched at least one lineman every season since 2006 (last year one, 2008 two including LT).

    Results

    2010-#1 in sacks allowed
    2009-#1 in sacks allowed
    2008-#4 in sacks allowed
    2007-#7 in sacks allowed
    2006-#1 in sacks allowed

    Not rocket science folks. RG’s for Super Bowl teams switch from year to year, get picked up off NFL Europe teams and practice squads, are undrafted and easily replaced.

  • Just Fire Baby

    Morning Hwnrdr!!

    Just off to my morning rant with my coffee, lol.

  • hwnrdr

    I hear ya…that’s my next move…coffee! With a chocholate cupcake! LOL
    My last working day of the year…

  • Just Fire Baby

    My last day of the work year is going to be multiple hours with Rosetta Stone

  • hwnrdr

    What language you tryna learn?

  • Just Fire Baby

    Does the O-line need to improve? Of course.

    But just drafting lineman high in the draft is not the answer.

    Look at our O-line and their draft status. With Walker in the game, we have two 1st round picks, a 2nd and a 3rd round pick on our O-line.

    I’m not even sure there is another team in the league with that high of draft picks along their line.

  • Just Fire Baby

    Spanish.

    Necesito hablo espanol por El Paso empleados.

  • RaiderRockstar

    I think McClain has been a complete bust this year. He doesn’t have the motor to be an effective MLB (ala Matthews, Cushing) Both have been dominant for 2 years. McClain had only 1 pick and did not cause a single fumble!!!! He is not a playmaker.

    Just so we can quiet the RockStar down, I would like to see Goethel start at MLB in the KC game.

    ***

    Big Lefty = stud!

    Thec, I would like to nominate him for semi pro blogger status.

    Please let me know when approved (so we can toast to him) or denied (so I can file an appeal)

    Thanks in advance,

    your friendly neighborhood redneck

  • Just Fire Baby

    It’s crazy in El Paso. You got actual city workers, born in the US, who speak less English than I speak Spanish.

    Something wrong there.

  • RaiderRockstar

    Then we won’t have to hear RockStar pimp his old college room mate (Goethel) anymore!!!!!!

    ***

    LOL!

    Goethel was born in Oceanside, attended Vista High School and went to Arizona State

    I have no connection to him. Just know he’s a beast on the football field, the next Greg Biekert 8)

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    GOOD MORNING SPORT’S FAN’S.HWNRDR,JFB,ROCKSTAR.GUESS WE GOT 4 MONTHS OF DRAFT BS 2 LOOK 4WARD 2..AHH YES,I REMEMBER GREG BIEKERT CHASING PEOPLE DOWN THE MIDDLE OF THE FIELD..

  • RaiderRockstar

    Travis Goethel’s bio:

    As a junior in high school, he recorded 155 tackles, including 14 tackles for loss, 8 quarterback sacks, and 5 interceptions, two which he returned for touchdowns. He was rated as high as the No.10 linebacker in the country by Rivals.com. He picked Arizona State over scholarship offers from Oregon State, Utah and Washington.

    He played in all 50 games over his four-year career, including 41 starts. He totaled 228 tackles (143 solo), 19.0 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, nine pass break-ups, three interceptions, three forced fumbles and one fumble recovery in his career. He was an Honorable Mention Pac-10 All selection in his senior season, and in his freshman season, garnered Pac-10 All freshman honors and honorable mention Freshman All-American.

  • RaiderRockstar
  • hwnrdr

    That’s too funny JFB, but I believe it! Haha…
    Good Morning Rockstar, Dirt Lot! The great Greg Biekert…recovered that fumble in the snow…oh wait…it was overturned!
    I am hoping that the Niners don’t get Harbaugh, but it looks like it may happen (unless Luck stays in school and Harbaugh decides to stay one more year…)