AFC West: Chiefs-Raiders 111509

Russell decision could come Monday

November, 15, 2009
OAKLAND -- Raiders coach Tom Cable indicated he may make an announcement on who will be his starting quarterback Monday after he watches film of the Raiders’ 16-10 loss to the Chiefs.

Cable benched JaMarcus Russell in the third quarter in favor of Bruce Gradkowski. Russell went 8-for-24 for 64 yards. Gradkowski was 5 of 9 for 49 yards. Gradkowksi led Oakland on a late drive that ended when rookie receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey dropped a pass at Kansas City’s 9 that was intercepted by Chiefs’ safety Mike Brown.

The fact that Russell was benched with the game in question seems to point to Gradkowski starting Sunday at home against Cincinnati.

Russell didn’t look any worse than he has all season and he made some decent throws. Oakland’s receivers dropped seven of his passes.

Asked if he was surprised when he was benched, Russell said “totally.”

Asked if he expects to start next week, Russell said he wasn’t told differently after the game.
OAKLAND -- OK, the Raiders just made it very difficult for JaMarcus Russell to become a productive quarterback the rest of the season.

Oakland benched Russell for the second time in three weeks Sunday against Kansas City,

The major difference between Sundays’s benching against the Chiefs and the benching against the Jets was that Sunday’s game was still in question when he was taken out. The Raiders were trailing 13-10 when Russell was taken out late in the third quarter.

It was a sign that Oakland doesn’t think Russell can help it win.

Now what? Will be given the starting job back next week against Cincinnati or will Bruce Gradkowski become the starter? Gradkowski led a late rally before rookie receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey let a ball bounce out of his hands and into the hands of Kansas City safety Mike Brown to end the game.

How can Russell's uncertain status not have an adverse mental affect on him?

Russell was clearly upset when he was benched.

He wasn’t terrible Sunday. He had seven dropped passes. Russell was 9 of 24 for 67 yards. He threw back-to-back excellent deep balls in the second quarter, but he was the victim of a drop and a penalty.

Russell seemed to make strides.

But Oakland didn’t think so.

Now, it will have to decide if it thinks he can quarterback the team anymore as the team enters a stretch in which it plays Cincinnati, Dallas and Pittsburgh.

The Raiders may be 2-7, but once again the intrigue continues.

For Kansas City, the Chiefs took advantage of a porous Oakland team and they made more plays than the Raiders.

The Chiefs are making small strides and they reached the 2-7 mark. But unlike Oakland, at least the Chiefs are sticking with their players as they move forward.

Russell benched again

November, 15, 2009
OAKLAND -- JaMarcus Russell has been benched again.

Bruce Gradkowski entered the game late in the third quarter.

Russell seemed visibly upset and was seen asking his coaches what was going on when Gradkowski entered the game.

Russell was benched three weeks ago against the Jets. The difference was that game was a blowout. This time, the Chiefs are leading 13-10. The game is still in question and Oakland coach Tom Cable clearly thinks Russell can’t help Oakland win.

Really, Russell hasn’t been that bad Sunday. He has been victimized by seven drops. Russell has completed 8 of 24 passes for 64 yards.

Janikowski sees streak end

November, 15, 2009
OAKLAND -- It was a bad time for Oakland kicker Sebastian Janikowski to end his consecutive field goal streak.

Janikowski just missed a 46-yard field goal attempt that would have tied the Raiders’ game with Kansas City at 13-13 with 5:56 to go in the third quarter.

Janikowski had made 20 straight field goal attempts dating back to last season. He made his first 13 attempts this season. But he missed the game-tying attempt badly.

Chiefs-Raiders notes

November, 15, 2009
OAKLAND -- We just ended one long first quarter. It took nearly an hour to play. There were 10 drives in the quarter and the game is tied at 10-10.

  • Oakland receiver Chaz Schilens started his first game of the season after being out for three months with a broken foot. First-round draft pick Darrius Heyward-Bey started along with him as Louis Murphy came off the bench.
  • Both teams have been sloppy in the first quarter, with several dropped passes and penalties.
  • Rookie safety Mike Mitchell is out with an apparent hamstring injury.
  • Oakland running back Michael Bush had a 60-yard run to set up Oakland’s touchdown. But the Raiders haven’t done much offensively since.
  • Kansas City had minus-4 rushing yards as of early in the second quarter in its first game since cutting Larry Johnson. But then Jamaal Charles struck for a 44-yard touchdown on fourth-and-1.
  • Heyward-Bey dropped a perfect deep pass from quarterback JaMarcus Russell near the goal line early in the second quarter as he continued to have trouble holding onto the ball.
  • The Raiders are broadcasting the game in Navajo.

Pregame notes from Oakland

November, 15, 2009
OAKLAND -- Oakland coach Tom Cable isn’t expected to face NFL discipline stemming from physical abuse allegations, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports.

This has to be a relief for Cable. However, his biggest problem remains -- keeping his job. The Raiders are just 6-14 under Cable.

  • Oakland defensive end Greg Ellis is inactive after he had knee and shoulder surgery. Rookie Matt Shaughnessy will start in Ellis’ place.
  • Tight end Leonard Pope will make his first start with Kansas City. Sean Ryan had started the previous eight games.
  • Receiver Chaz Schilens is active for Oakland for the first time this season. He suffered a broken foot in August.
  • Oakland guard Robert Gallery is active for the first time since suffering a broken leg in Week 2.
  • Oakland running back Darren McFadden is active after missing four games with a knee injury.