I’m going to do something that isn’t very comfortable to me. I’m going to put on the white suit. Wearing white — probably my least favorite color — represents a silent protest against what I consider avoidable play by the Oakland Raiders.
It’s time. This team has given up, and after listening to Darrius Heyward-Bey’s postgame interview (he didn’t care enough to take off his headphones … they looked like Dre Beats. I hope he bought them at Radio Shack), and Michael Huff (remarkably businesslike for a guy who doesn’t handle much business on the field), it sounds like they’ve given up.
The Packers make a lot of teams look bad. But they’ll also serve as a petri dish for a team’s organizational shortcomings.
That’s exactly what happened on Sunday.
Our worst fears about Rolando McClain were confirmed.
I have this strange dreamlike image of me standing on the field at Lambeau near the back judge … and that song is pouring through the stadium like a giant solid wave of sound …”oh, I don’t know why I came here tonight … I got a feeling that something ain’t right … clowns to the left of me (Aaron Curry) Jokers to the right (Rolando McClain), Here I am, stuck in the middle with you…”
The needle screeches off the record when I look forward and see Ryan Grant (I know, it would be more dramatic if it was an actual pro running back) bursts through the line of scrimmage as Rolando bites on a half-hearted misdirection play and whiffs completely, only to get some conditioning as he followed Grant into the endzone after the Packer’s second snap. Oddly, he didn’t leer at the sideline cameras with a Thizz face after the touchdown run, as Rolando is wont to do in awkward moments.
As the broadcast team pointed out more than once (hey, it was a blowout by second quarter and they had to fill time!), Grant had not run that far on one play since he was 14. They also incorrectly pointed out that the Raiders had not allowed 50 points since the 80s. Au contraire, production truck! It was actually in the AFC Championship Game in 1991. They gave up 51 points to the Buffalo Bills that fine January day. That was the first time the Raiders broke my heart, coincidentally.
That game from over 20 years ago was shockingly similar to the one they played Sunday. The Raiders had no answers. Doesn”t matter what questions the Packers asked, the answer was always “huh?” The Raiders were asleep on the couch every time someone asked them a question, and they would sit up quickly and pat their hair down with their hands so no one would think they were asleep on the couch, but I assure you, they were assed-out-passed. Dead to the world.
This follows in a trend this season of Raider defenders looking completely unprepared for what the other team is going to do. This isn’t the first time I’ve written about Raider defenders running away from the ball in this space. It’s no fun seeing your team get beat by a better athlete, but it is painful to see the defense look woefully unprepared. I know it’s fashionable to bash Chuck Bresnahan, but the responsibility goes further. It goes to Greg Beikert, the linebackers coach. And it goes to Hue Jackson, he who says “the team’s mood is my mood.” Defensively, this team is terrible. Fundamentally they are doing things badly. Tackling high and letting guys get away (Stanford Routt), playing on top of the DL and not seeing plays develop (Rolando McClain).
McClain is the best kept dirty secret on this team, next to Bresnahan. Both of them need to go, and they might want to save two seats for Richard Seymour. Kamerion Wembley and Tommy Kelly are both playing great football, and are doing things the Raider way.
By the way, Wembley should’ve had a pick-6 on Sunday, and Mike McCarthy joins the ranks of the Fat Punk Brigade by challenging that call. Ridiculous. Dude, it’s 31-0. Greg Jennings gets injured? That’s Karma, bitch! What was he still doing in the game??? FAT PUNK!!!!
Sorry, I’m a little emotional.
It reminds me of the song “Today Is The Day”. If you listen to the first line, you’ll understand.
“I followed you, foolishly…”
I’m going to see this thing out to the end, like real fans do. But two weeks in a row, I’ve had my Silver and Black heart absolutely stomped on.
It also doesn’t help that this coincides with some of the most dramatic play out of a Broncos team since they won the Super Bowl over a decade ago.
The Raiders are awfully close to being out of playoff contention, and at this point, without some major changes to the organization, it’s probably for the best. If we ride Parson’s Calmer into the playoffs, he becomes a more expensive pony. Here’s to finishing at .500 or better and not losing to the Chargers in the last game of the season.
Oh, and can someone in the league figure out Tebow??
The Raiders Sports Guy, Francis Mayer, has extensive experience in radio as a producer in Bakersfield, as a former morning show host at 106.1 KRAB and now producing a local morning news show. He and BASG played on the same Babe Ruth baseball team as 13-year-olds, and Francis still talks about that time he struck out the side in his only pitching appearance of the season. He’s also a fan of the Oakland Raiders and Minnesota Twins, a strange pairing of teams that’s never been fully explained.