AFC West: Jets-Raiders

AFC West player of the week

October, 21, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson


With only one team, Oakland, winning in the AFC West this week, it is easy to know where our AFC West player of the week will come from.

If it wasn't for Sebastian Janikowski, the Raiders would not have won. That makes Janikowski this week's recipient.

Janikowski gave Oakland a 16-13 win over the New York Jets with a 57-yard field goal with 2:30 remaining in overtime. Not only was the kick a game winner but it was an Oakland record for the longest field goal in team history.

And Janikowski cleared it by several yards.

On the sideline, shortly before the kick, Janikowski told his coach, Tom Cable, he could convert from 57. The Raider's offense, which floundered much of the game, put him in the situation he wanted and Janikowski delivered.

Moving away from Week 7

October, 20, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

I am traveling from Oakland and the Raiders' exciting overtime win over the Jets.

I will check in later this afternoon with news and notes from around the AFC West and in preparation for tonight's Denver-New England game.

Posted by's Bill Williamson

 Kyle Terada/US Presswire
 Oakland coach Tom Cable celebrates during the Raiders' 16-13 overtime win over the New York Jets Sunday.

OAKLAND -- Tom Cable is assimilating well to Raiders football.

To succeed in Oakland, or to at least to be accepted here, you must embrace the past. You must enter Al Davis' world. Cable has done that and, for the next week, at least, the 1970s are alive.

In town for a team memorial for the late Gene Upshaw, former Oakland greats Ken Stabler and Raymond Chester came to the team's hotel Saturday night to try to fire up the 2008 version, a team that looks nothing like the 1970s Raiders.

At 1-4 and coming off a 34-3 loss in New Orleans to kick off the Cable era, the Raiders were in need of much more than a pep talk from the former stars. It appears to have helped.

And after a 16-13 overtime win over Brett Favre and the New York Jets, it was all about the past for the Raiders.

"The great ones took out time for us, that's a big thing," Oakland defensive tackle Gerard Warren said. "We got some good players on this team, but those are Super Bowl winners. We listened. They got us wanting to win for the organization. It was a good thing. There's a lot of history here."

There's even some revisionist history. Apparently, as far as Cable is concerned, the first six weeks of the NFL season never happened. On about 10 different occasions, the Raiders' interim coach -- the offensive line coach who replaced the fired Lane Kiffin on Sept. 30 -- announced to the world that the Raiders are 1-0.

"We're 1-0 and we're going to enjoy it," Cable said.

For the record the "1-0" Raiders are in third place in the AFC West. And, don't tell Cable, but for some odd reason, the official NFL standings have the Raiders' record at 2-4. Apparently, Cable's message is that his team must take it one game at a time.

You know what? It's exactly what the Raiders, who play at Baltimore next Sunday, need.

They need some love. Cable is there to give it to them. He gave out a couple of game balls after the win. He said he was going to give out a few more Monday.

He praised the play of quarterback JaMarcus Russell, who was largely ineffective until late in overtime. He called receiver Javon Walker "marvelous" after a game in which he caught five passes.

He admitted he nearly screwed up when he iced Jets kicker Jay Feely, giving Feely a second chance to send the game to overtime with a 52-yard field goal.

Cable, an intriguing combination of big and cuddly and intimidating and forceful, also panned himself a few times. He's a players' coach. And perhaps more important, he's a Raiders historian.

Here are a few more observations from Sunday's game:

(Read full post)

The day that was in the AFC West

October, 19, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

OAKLAND -- Here are some random late game-night thoughts:

  • The Raiders need to clean up their act. They had 14 penalties for 85 yards.
  • It seems like Larry Johnson's days in Kansas City are numbered, don't they? If he is suspended this season, it will almost certainly end his time with the Chiefs.
  • Tailback Michael Bush didn't play Sunday for the Raiders. It was reported last week that he was nearly traded to the Chargers. Raiders coach Tom Cable said it was the flow of the game when asked why Bush didn't play. The Raiders could use a running spark. Justin Fargas had 74 yards on 28 carries (an average of 2.6 yards a carry) and Darren McFadden had 39 yards on eight carries.
  • It looks like the Chargers will get a break in London by not having to face New Orleans' Reggie Bush. The Chargers could use any break they can get right now.
  • You think run defense won't be stressed in Kansas City this week? The Chiefs allowed Chris Johnson and LenDale White a combined 317 rushing yards. Yikes.
  • Raiders rookie defensive end Trevor Scott looks good. He had two sacks and provided a much-needed pass rush with Derrick Burgess out for the second straight game with a triceps injury.

Rapid Reaction: Raiders 16, Jets 13

October, 19, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

An anemic Oakland passing game came to life just when it had to.

After not creating any offense in the first two series of overtime, Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell hit receiver Javon Walker and tight end Zach Miller for big pass play. It setup a 57-yard field goal by Sebastian Janikowski with 2:30 to go in overtime. It was an Oakland record for a field goal.

Just when it looked like the game was headed for a 13-13 tie, the Raiders' offense showed unfamiliar life. Will this be the start of something big or was it simply good timing to give a bad team a rare win?

We'll see, but right now, in Oakland, where the Raiders won in overtime for the first time in eight years, it doesn't matter.

Was it a textbook win for Oakland? No, but that's not the point. The Raiders were desperate for good feeling and they left the field feeling fine Sunday for first time since Week 2 in Kansas City.

Cable gives Jets a second chance

October, 19, 2008
Posted by's Bill Williamson

Tom Cable just made his first major mistake as a head coach.

Cable tried to ice New York kicker Jay Feely on a 52-yard field goal attempt with eight seconds remaining.

Cable called the timeout but the Jets went through with the play and Feely's effort bounce off a goal post. The Oakland Coliseum erupted with an apparent 13-10 Oakland win.

But the timeout was registered. Feely got another chance.

He made the field goal to send the game to overtime at 13-13.

Trick plays light up fourth quarter

October, 19, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

It is getting tricky in the fourth quarter in Oakland

The Jets just tied the game at 10-10 with some trick plays.

On third-and-2, the Jets used the "Wildcat" formation with receiver Brad Smith taking a direct snap and running for the first down.

On the next play, Jets quarterback Brett Favre handed the ball off to running back Thomas Jones who then gave the ball to Smith who zipped into the red zone. Smith was assisted by a nice block by Favre on Oakland defensive end Kalimba Edwards.

Jones scored a few plays later to tie the game.

The Raiders took a 13-10 lead with 2:56 to go in the game after linebacker Jon Alston ran 21 yards after taking a snap on a fake punt by Oakland. It setup an Oakland field goal.

Raiders end touchdown-less streak

October, 19, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

OAKLAND -- The Raiders just ended the NFL's longest current touchdown drought.

A short pass from JaMarcus Russell to Javon Walker was Oakland's first touchdown in 140 offensive plays. It was the longest streak in the NFL.

Prior to the play, which gave Oakland a 10-3 lead over the Jets in the third quarter, Oakland's last touchdown came in the second quarter of the Raiders' week 4 loss to San Diego. The Raiders had a bye in Week 5 and they lost 34-3 in New Orleans last week.

Posted by's Bill Williamson

OAKLAND - Halftime thoughts from Oakland:

The Raiders are killing themselves with penalties. They have been penalized eight times for 45 yards. One penalty nullified a touchdown pass from JaMarcus Russell to Zach Miller and another allowed the Jets to keep possession after a punting situation.

Even though he has been benched in favor of Hiram Eugene, Oakland safety Michael Huff is playing extensively.

The Raiders are blitzing often.

Oakland running back Darren McFadden still looks like he is slowed by a turf toe injury he suffered in Week 2 in Kansas City. He has 18 yards on four carries.

New York quarterback Brett Favre has completed 14 of 19 passes but for just 97 yards.

Former Raiders' quarterbacks George Blanda, Ken Stabler and Jim Plunkett participated in a halftime ceremony to honor Raiders' hall of famer Gene Upshaw who died after a short bout with cancer in August.

Favre intercepted at goal line

October, 19, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

OAKLAND - Brett Favre just threw an in interception at the Oakland goal line with the game tied at 3-3.

The Jets were inside the Raiders' 10-yard line when Favre was trying to hit receiver Jerrricho Cotchery but was intercepted by Oakland safety Gibril Wilson.

Oakland could not take advantage of the Favre miscue however. Oakland kicker Sebastian Janikowski missed a 40-yard field goal.

Meanwhile, New York tight end Bubba Franks was taken to the locker room with a hip injury. He is questionable to return.

Pre-game tidbits from Oakland

October, 19, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

OAKLAND - Pre-game news and notes:

Oakland defensive end Derrick Burgess is out for the second straight week with a triceps injury. He is Oakland's best pass rusher. Kalimba Edwards is starting for him.

Oakland rookie receiver Chaz Schilens is looking good in pre-game drills. The seventh-round pick is starting his first game. He has replaced the benched Ronald Curry. The Raiders have also benched safety Michael Huff in favor of Hiram Eugene this week. Jets' quarterback Brett Favre looks very sharp in pre-game warm-ups. It is sunny and it is expected to be 65 degrees in Oakland for game time. It is expected to be a late-arriving crowd. There was a power outage near the stadium and traffic and public transportation has been affected, the Raiders announced.

AFC West news and notes

October, 19, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

OAKLAND -- Just getting settled in Oakland for this afternoon's game between the New York Jets and the Raiders.

I wanted to hit on a couple of tidbits as the early games get rolling.

The Chargers will need another big game from receiver Vincent Jackson in Buffalo today. Jackson, who had five catches for 134 yards last week against New England, will be counted on again with fellow receiver Chris Chambers out for a second week in a row. He has an ankle injury. The Chargers are also without backup receiver Buster Davis. Malcolm Floyd and Legedu Naanee will play bigger roles today. But the Chargers need another big game from Jackson.

In Kansas City, running back Larry Johnson is inactive as promised by coach Herman Edwards. Johnson, who leads the AFC in rushing, is inactive for not following team directions.

I will be checking in later with some pre-game notes.