At the beginning of last year, replacement officials were called in to officiate while the referee's union was negotiating with the NFL. While this was going on, other teams were griping and moaning about blown calls and demanding that the NFL finish the contract with the regular referees ASAP. But one of the things I noticed, was that the Raiders weren't losing games because of blown calls by the refs. It was a refreshing change to get that monkey off our back.
A couple of years ago, I went through the NFL database (back when they made the stats available) and looked at the number of times the Raiders led the league in penalties, finished in the top 5, and finished in the top 10. The results were shocking (unless you are a Raiders fan and had to live it.) Unfortunately, the NFL changed their website so I can't pull up the stats for you but there were only a couple of years that the Raiders were not in the top 10.
This is also compounded when you look at rule changes that have hurt us. (Immaculate reception, tuck rule, etc.) I even remember a season opening game against the Chargers where the Raiders receiver caught a touchdown pass, turned around, made a football move, went to the ground and lost possession of the ball after clearly controlling it. This was clearly a touchdown but they overturned it. It cost us the game and hurt the season.
Now one could probably roll their eyes and say this is another rant of a Raiders fan, but when theres smoke theres always fire. I think the league should put the current officials under a microscope so that things like point shaving and fixing outcomes of games don't happen. They should also monitor stats to make sure that teams are not getting any type of favoritism. (Cough...New England...)
Also, it would be interesting to see if the Raiders had more or less penalties with replacement officials or the union ones. My money would be on the replacements even though they only had about 4 games.