"Holy Toledo!"

August 20, 2007

Raiders News & Game Notes:

Filed under: NFL — Bill @ 9:31 am

Since Saturday night’s game there have been a few new developments:

– On Monday morning the impossible happened, the Raiders made a trade with the Denver Broncos. The Raiders acquired DT Gerard Warren for an undisclosed draft choice. Imagine what low expectation the Broncos must have of Warren for Shanahan & (former Raiders GM) Mike Lombardi to deal with Al Davis.

– In Sunday’s teleconference Raiders head coach Lane Kiffin was asked who would be the starting QB. Lane answered, “There is no clear number one quarterback” (an all too obvious observation is that the #1 QB is still waiting to be signed). The last thing this team needs is a QB controversy, so coach Kiffen needs to be decisive about the #1 QB spot.

Raiders-49ers Game Notes:

– QB Andrew Walter started the game poorly by fumbling a snap (leading to a 49er field goal), and throwing an ill-advised interception into double coverage on 3rd & long (resulting in a 49er TD). Walter settled down after that, but the damage had already been done. Last year many blamed Walter’s failures on the poor O-line, but in this game he looked just like last years QB and the O-line had little to do with it.

– QB Daunte Culpepper fumbled three more snaps from center (none were from the shotgun formation). On one of the fumbles he demonstrated that his often discussed surgically repaired knee is returning to form, scrambling left and throwing a TD pass.

– QB Alex Smith showed again that he can throw on the run. His two minute drive at the end of the half wasn’t something he will be happy with, but overall he performed well.

– What a nice game for RB Lamont Jordan. He looked powerful in running over LB Patrick Willis at the goal-line, and looked speedy on a long cut back run. If Jordan remains healthy he should have a very good year for the Raiders.

– The Raiders pass rush was excellent early, putting plenty of heat on Alex Smith. Once the starters left however the pass rush seemed weak, only showing up a bit in the 4th quarter. 3rd round draft choice Quentin Moses showed signs that he may be a solid contributor in ’07.

– On at least 5 or 6 occasions the Raiders run defense absolutely stuffed the 49ers RB’s, and overall did a fine job of stopping the run. Potentially a good sign of things to come.

– Another draft choice TE Zach Miller made a fine catch, showing off his good hands. Is it a coincidence that he was given #46 (Todd Christensen’s old number)?

– Janikowski vs. Nedney: Early in the game the wind was a factor and something interesting occurred on several of the kickoffs. Kicking with the wind in the 1st quarter 49er Joe Nedney had two kickoffs into the endzone that were not returnable. In the 2nd quarter Janikowski (known for his mule-like kicks) had two kickoffs and neither reached the goal-line, both were returned beyond the 25 yard line.

– The Allstate Poor Hands Team of Travis Taylor & Alvis Whited made an appearance. WR Travis Taylor dropped an easy catch that killed a drive for Andrew Walter early in the game. On the second to last play of the game WR Alvis Whited (who so rarely gets open) dropped a potential game winner in the end zone. In fairness to Whited he was interfered with on the play, but no flag was thrown.

– Much heralded safety Mike Huff continued his streak of causing no turnovers. He started all 16 games last season and caused no fumbles and intercepted none. For him to justify his #7 pick in the ’06 draft this streak needs to end.

– Overall the Raiders defense looked solid, and their ground game churned out 133 yards (most of them by Lamont Jordan). The 49ers did little that was spectacular or terrible. Andrew Walter’s poor start is a concern. The Raiders offense seems to be headed in the right direction, which is a good sign for Raider fans.

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2 Comments »

  1. One thing to write about pre-season, but you *actually* watch it! šŸ™‚

    Comment by Ralph Zig Tyko — August 20, 2007 @ 1:51 pm

  2. Nice smiley face Mr. Zig!

    Yes I did watch it, recorded it, edited out all the commercials, and dubbed it to DVD.

    It’s what NFL fans do (or at least some of them). I’m sure I’m the exception. It’s my Raiders passion.

    You watch exhibition baseball in Spring Training don’t you?

    Comment by billkuhn — August 20, 2007 @ 2:27 pm


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