What a difference a week makes. This time last week, I was up in the Bay Area, with a bunch of fired up Raider fans, bumping Autumn Wind as loud as I could after the Raiders went for two, and the win, in New Orleans, and got it. And not only that, I chased it by going on The NFL Today yesterday on CBS and declared…, no guaranteed that the Raiders were going to the playoffs.
Why wouldn’t they? Jack Del Rio, Derek Carr, Khalil Mack, the Silver and Black are back baby! Their fierce. They’re explosive. They’re fearless… Hell, I’ll say it, they’re intimidating again. Just like the Raiders of old. Hell yes, I said it. They’re going to the playoffs!!
And then they go out and fall on their faces at home against the Falcons yesterday. The same Falcons who were torched in Week 1 by Jameis Winston, who just got turned inside out by the Cardinals, torched the Raiders in Week 2 for 528 yards and 35 points. Brutal. What a horrific look. But not for Raider fans, but for ME.
I’m not here to make it about me. But how can you guys do this to me? Forget about you, for a second. Think about me. I spent all week hyping this team on this show and then I go on national television and go to bat for you by saying you’re going to take a bat to the rest of the league.
I made the point that the old, embarrassing Raiders were dead and gone. The Raiders who punched out assistant coaches, who hired coaches who were innkeepers, who employed Lane Kiffin and had Seabass attempting 76-yard field goals. Those dudes were dead to me.
And in their place was Jack Freaking Del Rio. The only NFL coach to have his testicles trending. Not my words, but his daughter’s! This was the return of the real Raiders. The guys who’d crack skulls and talk junk. And then you go out and kick me in the junk.
You’re making me look bad, Oakland. Really bad. Now… I’m not going to sit here and point fingers. I’m not going to call anyone out specifically. Yes I am. It’s the defense. It’s not lit!! IT’S GETTING LIT. EVERY SUNDAY.
Because as good as Derek Carr and that offense is, they’re not making the playoffs if they have to put up 6 touchdowns every week. And that’s what it looks like right now. Back to back games giving up 34 points or more. Back-to-back games giving up 500 yards or more.
Raiders’ linebacker Bruce Irvin said after the game: “We’re not on the same page and its showing. We went from a bad showing to an even worse performance the following week.”
No, we’re not on the same page, Bruce. And it is showing. And it’s showing badly for me.
Khalil Mack, who’s still looking for his first sack, was even stronger with his description: “Yeah, it was terrible today for us discipline-wise. The first two games, 1,000 yards? It sucks”
Saying something sucks is not a take, but that sucks. And you know what sucks more than giving up more than a thousand yards in two games? Me sticking my neck out for you and then you giving up more than a thousand yards in two games.
If I don’t go to bat for you, you can do whatever you want. But when I put my name on the line and then you do that, you’re not only letting yourself down, you’re letting me down, too.
Del Rio took over some of the play calling from defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr late in the game. Makes sense, because whatever Ken was dialing up, wasn’t working.
Jack and I agree, you guys have too much talent and you’re too good to be playing this bad. And you have too much talent defensively to have opponents abuse and humiliate you the way they are right now. Wake the hell up. Right now.
If you can’t do it for yourselves, then do it for me. Because you have my playoff guarantee to live up to. And hell yes, I’m taking this personally. Because the only one who looks worse than you is me.