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January 6, 6:27 AM ET
Chat with Bill Williamson

Steiny (NYC)

Will JaMarcus Russell be the starting quarterback of the Oakland Raiders next season?

Bill Williamson
  (2:02 PM)

Ye,s I don't think there is any doubt about that.

Evan (PGH)

Do you think Ben Roethlisberger, who has an injury to pretty much every part of his body and has played the worst season of his career, will help or hurt the Steelers this Sunday? Leftwich has stepped in on a number of occasions this season with the same horrendous OL and horrible play calling by Bruce Arians, and he's done great things.

Bill Williamson
  (2:05 PM)

We will see in the first quarter. If Big Ben is affected, we'll be able to tell pretty early.

Brad (Winston-Salem, NC)

Do you think the coaching change in Denver will help or hinder the chances of them winning the AFC West next year.

Bill Williamson
  (2:06 PM)

Way too early to tell, Brad. But this is a move designed to make this a playoff team.

Joe (Chicago, IL)

If you had to bet money on it, who would you say is going to be Denver's coach in 2009?

Bill Williamson
  (2:09 PM)

Upset; Raheem Morris. But they also like Josh McDaniels, Jason Garrett and Steve Spagnuolo. I know I'm being vague here but it is early in the process. But I know that team was enamored by Raheem Morris.

Larry (Pasco, WA)

I think the Chargers have a great chance of knocking off the Steelers. If Rivers can stay away from turnovers and convert TD's in the redzone they'll be fine. The Steelers offense is not that good. What do you think of the Steelers O versus the Chargers D?

Bill Williamson
  (2:11 PM)

I see a similar game as the 11-10 game in November. maybe there will be some more points scored but it will be a tight game in bad weather. I think the Chargers' defense will play well.

Chris (Denver)

Bill, what are the chances that the new head coach of the Broncos (whoever that may be), will keep the big 3 offensive coaches (Dennison, Bates, & Turner)? seems to me like any coach would be foolish not to keep them's almost like mike shanahan leaving you his vaunted rushing attack as a christmas stocking stuffer! :)

Bill Williamson
  (2:12 PM)

That's the desire of the front office, which makes you beleive the team may be leaning toward hiring a defensive coach.

Shawn (Toronto)

Bill, do you see any way that Herm keeps his job in KC? Among the candidates being mentioned, seems that only Tampa personnel guy Dominik has worked with him.

Bill Williamson
  (2:13 PM)

It all depends on who is hired. If it is not Scott Pioli, I could see a way he stays, yes.


any chance LT gets traded this offseason?

Bill Williamson
  (2:14 PM)

I'd be surprised if LT wasn't in San Diego in 2009.

Jon (Boulder)

Could Bailey be traded for 2 quality picks? Would the Broncos do it?

Bill Williamson
  (2:17 PM)

Interesting, Jon. I know Champ is going to want to redo his contract soon. He had more health issues in 2008 than ever before. But if he was traded, what would Dnever do at cornerback? He should stay for at least one more season in Denver.

joe newyork

is it true that the broncos will name McDaniels and capers as dc by next week

Bill Williamson
  (2:18 PM)

That would be one heck of a combination.

Josh (Cleveland)

Eric Mangini hire in cleveland good or bad?

Bill Williamson
  (2:18 PM)

Good. I think he is solid.


Hey Bill, Great work!!! Is there any chance that the new D-coordinator of the Raiders is Romeo Crennel? Herm Edwards? or Ron Rivera? If not, any word on who they may look at? Don Martindale or Darren Perry?

Bill Williamson
  (2:20 PM)

I think the Raiders would be lucky to have any of those first three names you mentioned as a head coach.

Clint G. (Midland, TX)

Being that the majority of the Raiders unsigned assistants are leaving for other jobs, if Tom Cable does get the head job full-time will it be hard for him to complete his staff with other assistants he feels comfortable with? I guess that the only coach he came in with was Knapp and Cable had been calling the plays anyway. What's your take?

Bill Williamson
  (2:23 PM)

This is anotehr reason why the Raiders have to act quickly. Whoever the coach is needs to fill his staff. Cable is working at a disadvantage right now. If he is the guy he needs to know so he can get to work.

Clint G. (Midland, TX)

If you were the Raiders would you draft a top tackle like Smith, Oher, etc. or a prime-time receiver like Crabtree or Maclin?

Bill Williamson
  (2:24 PM)

They have to figure out this issue at tackle. They could get receiver help from other avenues.


Ravens-Titans. Who ya got?!

Bill Williamson
  (2:25 PM)

Got a feeling about the Ravens this week. They are playing very well.


Will Bill Parcells stay in Miami?

Bill Williamson
  (2:26 PM)

That's the word right now.

Kurt (Spokane, WA)

Hey Bill! Love your work. What are the chances Ron Rivera stays on as DC for the Chargers next season?

Bill Williamson
  (2:27 PM)

Kurt, thanks for the kind words. If Rivera doesn't get a head job I think he stays. He is revered in San Diego. He' s a big reason for this turnaround.

Mike (Denver)

Best case Denver drafts 2 D starters and acquires 1-2 on the open market. With the coaching changes, how much better can they be in the coming year?

Bill Williamson
  (2:29 PM)

From seeing teams like Miami and Altanta turn it around so quickly this year and other teams in recent years, I think anything is possible. That"s why Pat Bowlen made this move. He wants to new blood to refresh the franchise.

PT (Franklin, NC)

Do you think the Raiders will keep all three of their running backs?

Bill Williamson
  (2:31 PM)

Yes, I think so. The question is, will they use them all? Bush showed in the season finale that he is no joke.

Dan(San Diego)

Hey Nill- How scary do you think the Chargers D will be if they can get Rivera to stay and he has an offseason and a healthy Merriman and Cromartie next year?

Bill Williamson
  (2:34 PM)

The Rivera-Merriman tandem could be scary, yes. If Rivera is there next season will will see it. Merriman will be back and expected to be back to his old self.

Marcus (San Diego CA)

Will Michael Bennett be able to turn back the clock and be productive along with Sproles vs. Pitt's viscious D??

Bill Williamson
  (2:36 PM)

I think he'll be needed. He will have to spell Sproles some if Tomlinson doesn't play which is expected. Bennett ran well against the Colts in his first action for the Chargers. He'll need to do it again this weekend.

Danny ( San Diego )

Hey Bill the Chargers played a good game overall vs the colts, they have a great shot to take down pitsburn, my only concern is the offensive line, they really struggled with the two edge rushers vs the colts, how do you see that match up of the SD O-line Vs the Pitsburg Front 7? if they can Keep Rivers upright and buy him some time i can see this upset happening, what are your thoughts?

Bill Williamson
  (2:39 PM)

The o-line will surely be a key for the Chargers. Yes, the tackles had some trouble against the Colts. Pittsburgh is mean and nasty up front. The Chargers will have to be stout or Rivers will be in distress all game.

Conrad (Parker)

With the 12th pick in the 2009 draft the Denver Broncos pick: Mays, Maulaluga, or Laurinaitis? Go!

Bill Williamson
  (2:40 PM)

Right this minute? Maulaluga. He'd make the linebacking crew very good.

Leigh (Ny,NY)

Who do you see playing in Tampa for the Superbowl? What are the chances of rematch Superbowl of the Giants vs Ravens?

Bill Williamson
  (2:42 PM)

I'll probably change my picks Sunday night, but right now I see the Giants and the Ravens.

Jonny B (Washington, DC)

Hey Bill, didnt you trash the G-men before Super Bowl XLII last year, saying they had no chance against the previously undefeated Patriots? If so, please tell me you like the Eagles come Sunday.

Bill Williamson
  (2:43 PM)

Yes and no. Sorry.


Any word on the head coaching job in Oakland?

Bill Williamson
  (2:44 PM)

It's moving slow but Cable's chances may be getting better.

Mike (Kansas City)

Who is Kansas City talking to for the GM position? Just Pioli?

Bill Williamson
  (2:46 PM)

Right now, yes, I think that's where they are leaning.

Bill Williamson
  (2:46 PM)

Right now, yes, I think that's where they are leaning.

Walker (Limon, CO)

Hey Bill, What the heck happened to Prater? First he's deep in the end zone, later he's kicking to the 5-10 yard line and hitting uprights (when he's not missing). Psychological, or unreported injury?

Bill Williamson
  (2:48 PM)

I think he just got tired as his first full season wore on. He was much, much better in the first half of the season. It will be interesting to see what the new regime does at kicker. Prater will surely have competiiton.

chris 'beanie' wells

do you see me in the afc west next year? oakland is set at RB, but denver, KC, and possibly even SD (with the tomlinson injury) will be in the market for a stud RB next season...

Bill Williamson
  (2:50 PM)

You now, I could see both Denver and San Diego looking at you. Both teams have other needs, But they will be tempted to take you,

Big Joe (Raider Nation)

Obviously the Raiders are in desperate need of a WR that is 1/2 decent so that Russell actually has a target. You KNOW the Raiders just love players that the rest of the league wants no part in. Knowing this can you see any of the following players in Silver & Black next season: Chad Johnson, Plaxico Burress, or Terrell Owens. (These players do NOT care about winning so please don't use that as an excuse.)

Bill Williamson
  (2:53 PM)

I think of the players you mentioned, Chad Johnson has the best chances of landing in Oakland. I could see that happening.

Lee (Reno)

Is anyone stupid enough to give Pacman another shot, or is he done?

Bill Williamson
  (2:55 PM)

I would have to think this was it for him.

Adam (LA)

This is another rematch for the Chargers (just like the colts last week). Is there any reason to expect this week to be any different? Espically with how much better the Bolts are playing right now.

Bill Williamson
  (2:57 PM)

The Colts' game was very similar to the first game (a last possession game) and I see this game being similar to the game in Pitsburgh.

Darren Sproles (San Diego)

will Harrison eat me for lunch?

Bill Williamson
  (2:57 PM)

He probably could but I don't think he will.

Mark (Americas finest city)

Will the Chargers be the team to beat in the AFC west next year or do you think they regress?

Bill Williamson
  (2:57 PM)

Hands down, team to beat.

Josh (DC)

How is the 20-something ranked Chargers D that good? They played the Raiders and the Chiefs twice each. I guess Manning didn't throw for 400 on them. sheesh!

Bill Williamson
  (2:59 PM)

The San Diego defense has been much improved under Ron Rivera who took over at midseason for the fired Ted Cottrell. It's a good unit right now.

Burwell (Addison, PA)

Was Scifres the MVP last week? And can he repeat his magic in Pittsburgh, even with the predicted snow?

Bill Williamson
  (3:00 PM)

He was amazing. Just amazing.

Bill Williamson
  (3:00 PM)

Hey folks, great hour as usual. Thanks and enjoy this weekend's games. BW.