Raiders the little engine that couldn’t

Note: Internet difficulties made updating in-game posts impossible . . .

Filed for print . . .

You could sum up the Raiders season in the 12 plays that were run after officials ruled Rod Streater hadn’t held on to what looked to be a 39-yard touchdown pass late in a 26-13 loss to the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium.

When replay officials upheld the no-catch with 4:46 to play, the offense continued to fight its way toward the end zone _ getting in its own way with a pair of penalties but eventually ending up with fourth-and-5 at the 6-yard line and 59 seconds to play.

In the end, Matt McGloin’s desperation heave in the face of a blitz slipped through the hands of Marcel Reece in the end zone, and the little engine that couldn’t had lost five straight games and seven of the last eight.

“We’re fighting our butts off and we’re close,’’ center Stefen Wisniewski said. “But we don’t quite seem to make the play when we need to in the fourth quarter.’’

San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers completed 19 of 29 passes for 201 yards with a 4-yard touchdown pass to Keenan Allen, Ryan Mathews rushed for 99 yards on 25 carries with a 7-yard scoring run and Nick Novak converted field goal attempts of 27, 48, 28 and 33 yards as the Chargers, 8-7, remained in wild card contention into the season finale at Kansas City.

The Raiders, 4-11, scored on 5-yard run by Darren McFadden and had field goals of 20 and 42 yards by Sebastian Janikowski heading into their last game at home against Denver.

McGloin was 19 of 36 for 201 yards and had a costly interception after the Raiders’ Mike Jenkins had intercepted Rivers. It led to a Novak field goal.

The Raiders were given 10 points on unforced errors. A shotgun snap Rivers never saw was the catalyst for a 58-yard drive resulting in McFadden’s touchdown run. A muffed punt by Allen set up Janikowski’s 20-yard field goal _ with the Raiders failing to produce a touchdown despite having first-and-goal at the 2-yard line.

Any concern felt by players on one-year contracts or coaches worried about their jobs were not alleviated by the manner of defeat. There were too many penalties (12 for 73 yards), too many third-down conversions by the Chargers (6-for-11) and too many missed opportunities.

Allen’s job will be up for review two years into a four-year contract, with general manager Reggie McKenzie meeting with the staff and reporting to Mark Davis. How Davis reacts, given he has no history in the coach-removal business as his late father did, is anyone’s guess.

“I can’t speak for how anyone else thinks or feels,’’ Allen said. “I can only speak for me. Every day we’re trying to win a game. That’s what my focus is, that’s the only focus I can have. It would be selfish of me to think any other way.’’

Asked if the coaching staff and much of the personnel could be shipped out, Wisniewski acknowledged it was possible.

“I really don’t know what they’re thinking,’’ Wisniewski said. “I’ve got another year here so I’m going to show up to work. I don’t know who the coach is going to be, but whoever it is I’ll support ‘em and do my best to lead whatever players are still here.’’

McGloin believes there has been no snowball effect regarding concerns for the future contributing to lack of performance.

“Not in our facility. That’s stuff we can’t control and we can’t worry about that stuff,’’ McGloin said. “We have one game left, and another week of practice.’’

“That’s part of the business,’’ safety Charles Woodson said. “There are a lot of teams going through the same thing. When the season is over, what’s going to happen is going to happen.’’

Veteran linebacker Kevin Burnett tried to be philosophical.

“It’s good to be living, to have another day to come out here and play the game that I love,’’ Burnett said. “Other than that, it pretty much sucks right now. I don’t know how else to put it.’’


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • http://wix.com/ggeden/ggeden GG

    When the Eagles hired their OL coach to be DC, their defense went backwards. When they hired a new DC, it improved. That whole 3 year process a percentage of their defensive roster stayed the same, tho there were additions/subtractions.

    The entire Raiders roster from Hue’s last year to Allen’s first year didn’t change that much, and the team went backwards. And the roster from Allen’s first year to second year changed a great deal — improved greatly in terms of talent on Defense — but the defense hasn’t drastically improved.

    The key criticism of Allen is the conservatism on offense, and the lack of progress on defense — even after getting an infusion of talent.

    But it’s clear that better coaching would have taken the same players this year and made them perform far better. Allen is okay, but not a wunderkind. Still I wouldn’t be upset if he stayed on another year.

    But cannot scapegoat Allen for the entire mess, otherwise not solving the problem. Problem is still Reggie. He’s just not that good as a GM. He’s made a ton of blunders already noted previously.

    There’s no way you can drag Allen over the coals, no way Reggie can throw him under the bus. Reggie has fubar’d so much. I do like some things he’s done. But the GM spot is not a position you can have someone learning at. Cost you dearly. You need someone who IMMEDIATELY has a midas touch.

  • FourMoreYears

    Word. Reggie has to hit a homerun here.

  • GreatWhiteRaider

    Im cool with that, bust out my sun visor from the closet. Would you give him Player Personnel control over the 53 man roster and let Reggie focus on the scouting/drafting?

  • Davy Jones

    5TDs and 8INTs in the last five games, all losses. McGloin’s done some good things, but not enough that you don’t bring in another guy. Not NEARLY enough.

  • TrevJo

    new post is up

  • Chino

    @VicTafur: “@timkawakami: Raiders’ point-differential: Minus-111, 4th worst in the NFL. Last year, minus-153 for the season, 4th-worst.” >> progress

  • http://AdvoCare.com/ Till death do us part

    This ones lies are going to hurt more innocent people in the history of this country!

  • GreatWhiteRaider

    AGREED. He gets a quasi pass at this point because I honestly think you can’t judge a draft for 2 years. So if he does well this year and Hayden and Watson become regulars and contribute next season, all is forgiven.

  • rioderek

    What is it that Reggie and DA are attempting to do ? I see no plan or general direction. Simply a make shift roster and bad coaches

  • severeraiderz

    We were a win away from the playoffs, defensive collapses by defense coordinated by someone Hue didn’t hire and even Al Davis didn’t want, cost us our berth

  • Davy Jones

    I’ll agree with them to a point. Pryor being out probably helped the running game. But by the same token, they don’t give credit for the scoring boost where it belongs- Jennings. Besides, QB output is QB output- no asterisk next to QB running stats.

  • FourMoreYears

    Matt McGloin – completed 60% of his passes ONCE (against a terrible Dallas defense). Has thrown an interception in every game since the Texans. Has 4 fumbles in the last 3 games.

    Why are we all in on this guy again?

  • rioderek

    DA lies like a rug and is just as clueless.

  • severeraiderz

    Who said anything about development? Holmes didn’t see the field early in the year due to his suspension


    LOL @ rug.

  • GreatWhiteRaider

    I see them trying to bring in guys who work hard and have some self-respect and that’s refreshing. I got sick of watching Al hand out retirement contracts to average players who didn’t reciprocate. Having said that, I’d take a team of jerks … as long as they win.

  • Davy Jones

    5Tds and 8ints in the last five games. I don’t care whether “we” the blog posters are all in on Money Matt, the Raiders shouldn’t be. They should hedge their bet and bring in the best QB available this offseason. My money says that’s in the first round of the draft.

  • aig-raiders

    Gdog, you are a lazy fck you know that. do your frickin homework dude. You gave a link to a picture. I gave you and jfb a link to the nfl.com rule book. I even went as far as pull up an article that debunk your Bert Emmanuel rule here.

    per the quote”The ruling on the play, as interpreted from the official rulebook, Rule 8
    Section 1 Article 4 Item 1, roughly states that, after catching the
    ball, a player in the process of going to the ground must not lose
    control of the ball after touching the ground. Johnson maintained
    control of the ball after he touched the ground with his hip. He then
    touched the ground with the ball and, at that point, probably he and all
    fans watching were thinking, score. The officials interpreted the rule
    as that he had to maintain control after he touched the ground with the
    ball, and promptly disallowed the touchdown.

    linkie http://voices.yahoo.com/calvin-johnson-learns-bert-emmanuel-rule-obscure-rule-6785098.html

  • severeraiderz

    Last year he played poorly, McCoy and wisenhunt resurrected him and now they are in the hunt for the wild card

  • Davy Jones

    I have no problem with giving Pryor another start, but doubt it will happen. We may have seen TPs last play as a Raider.

  • aig-raiders

    Carson Palmer 4 td 8 picks first 5 games. russel Wilson 5 td 6 ints.I can go on and on with all the “successful” qbs that threw picks in their rookie year. Did it ever occur to you guys that rookies throw picks? both good and bad rookies….

    andrew luck 54% comp rookie yr btw so comp % doesnt work either

  • FourMoreYears

    It’s sad when Johnny Football is an upgrade to your quarterback corps.

  • mkyd1963

    Right. A real QB plays both side of the ball.

  • https://twitter.com/MimiPeepeechimi Just Fire Baby

    What’s sad about the best draftable college QB being an upgrade?
    He would be an upgrade to close to 20 teams in the NFL.

  • FourMoreYears

    It’s not just that he throws picks, it’s that they’re terrible picks. And then there’s the jump balls for Jacoby Ford.

  • FourMoreYears

    Maybe. Still don’t trust Heisman quarterbacks, the list of failed ones is just too long.

    I do hope we draft him though, if Clowney is off the board.

  • mkyd1963

    Denial is the implication that McGloin is solely responsible for the lack of wins.

  • aig-raiders

    when is a pick a good pick?

  • FourMoreYears

    When the defender makes a good play on the ball. Not when the QB stares down his receiver and makes it easy for the other team.

  • aig-raiders

    isnt staring down a wr a typical rookie qb mistake and why they throw picks t begin with?

  • Tyrone Wheatley

    You speak truth

  • Gdog

    Scroll down to the link I posted and read the words (or find a 5 year old to read it to you) “…The NFL would later clarify the rule….”

  • kuhlest

    I am all in on him being our 2nd/3rd stringer going forward.

  • Gdog

    MD might step in again and insist it.

  • Davy Jones

    So maybe, if everything goes right . . . McGloin can be Carson Palmer? Pardon me while I curb my enthusiasm.

  • wildsach

    Hope we go after Clowney first. We need someone to pressure the opp’s QB.

  • Buckarama

    We need to keep looking for the next (and I hate to say it) Lady Brady. Keep looking. Don’t stop looking until we find him. Then play the Cheetriots and kick their buts

  • Davy Jones

    With you on Manziel. I wouldn’t mind if that were the pick.

  • Davy Jones

    The downside to your argument is that some of McGloin’s points and stats were scored in the garbage time of blowouts. But hey, so were some of Pryor’s. It’s time to confront the reality. Statistically, not so different. McGloin is better, but not good enough.

  • MVTA Raider

    Lol Stabler…. I stand corrected….

  • Davy Jones

    If by looking you mean looking in the 6th round, forget it. 1st or 2nd round for QBs. Stats don’t lie.

  • FourMoreYears

    Clowney opposite Greg Hardy would solve a lot of our pass rushing problems.

  • RaiderDebo

    Denver will definitely be playing starters. Need to win to wrap up top seed. Going to be ugly.

  • aig-raiders

    nice of you to use a quote from an espn picture. I prefer the actual Nfl.com website rule book as stated above as well as bcked up by the Calvin Johnson incident. I guess that’s where the diff is between you and I. You’re stuck in 1999 and I am playing with the 2013 rule book. Thanks for playing.

  • aig-raiders

    Or maybe he’ll out do him who knows but to nit pick on rookie qbs for ints is just plain stupid. All the great ones and dumb ones do it. It’s part of their job in their first year.

  • kuhlest

    just heard on espn that we will have more Cap$$$ than anyone in the history of the NFl

  • mkyd1963

    Yep. That was McGloin who committed six penalties that resulted in 6 first downs.

  • Gdog

    The CJ argument is that he lost control of the ball. Are you saying now that Weddle didn’t have control of the ball, or like before, that the ball touched the ground?

    Its hard to try and figure out your argument… its like debating a 5th grader.

  • aig-raiders

    Typical lazy poster. I dare you to pull up all of MM’s games this year and tell me how many points he scored in garbage time. We were in all of our games this year…including the KC game. Down 4 points late in the 3rd and he was pulled at the 8 in mark in the 4th. I already took down Marcus Thompson from teh Contra Costa Times with this argument and will have no problem dispatching you.

  • FourMoreYears

    So ignore everything else because the defense is bad. Gotcha, thanks.