Greetings, Raider fans! It is I, RaiderDamus, the only source for all things futuristic and prophetic, your mom's favorite Internet sage, and the World's Freshest Man. I come to you today after a long spell of no football, and I assure you I am well and truly ready for it. So in that spirit, I have consulted the Great Beyond, as is my custom, to have him show unto me the truth about what will befall our beloved Oakland Raiders on Sunday. Here is what the sometimes benevolent Knower Of All Things had to say:
"You're back? You've been at this for several years now. I've told you before they weren't going to win anything, but you keep coming back. I know they don't believe what I say, but that's their problem! You ask and I answer, because that's what I do. So who are the Raiders playing this week? The Bengals? Hoo boy, this will be fun. Sit down and listen, this may take a while.
The Bengals, as you know, came into existence in 1967. The Bengals were named after a prior football team named the Bengals which played in the years prior to World War 2, and were given their moniker as a shout-out to legendery coach Paul Brown's former team, the Massillon High School Tigers. They are certainly not named for any Bengali citizens of Cincinnati, as people from South Asia are not allowed in Ohio. The Bengals have done exactly one thing of note in that span, and that was to hire and fire one of the greatest football coaches of all time, Bill Walsh. They hired him to work under Paul Brown after Walsh had cut his teeth under Al Davis with the Raiders in the late 1960s.
Walsh was so beloved by Paul Brown that Brown fired him and named Bill Johnson as his replacement coach in Cincinnati and then made sure nobody would give Bill Walsh a head coaching job. So Walsh hired on with the Chargers for a season and then became Stanford's head coach, and then the head coach of the 49ers where he beat the Bengals in not one, but two Super Bowls. That is as close as Cincinnati has ever been to winning anything.
You see, God has two questions for teams from Ohio. This determines whether or not they will win a title.
"Does your team have Pete Rose on it?"
"Does your team have Lou Piniella as its manager?"
If the answer to these questions is "No," then the team does not get to win a championship.
This does not apply to an Ohio State University, which has made a pact with Satan who is the Devil and there's simply nothing to be done except show this gif of Woody Hayes punching a kid from Clemson.
But the Bengals have come closer than most, which is probably because Cincinnati is actually in Kentucky, which is exempt from such questioning because God abandoned Kentucky in 1956.
However, God will not allow Cincinnati to win anything ever again, because of the abomination unto Him known as Skyline Chili, better known as Cincinnati Chili. This vile concoction consists of cinnamon-flavored meat sauce commonly served over spaghetti noodles. It is literally the worst food of all time, but people from Cincinnati defend it like Patriots fans defending Bill Belichick, had he put a webcam in their shower.
This is an actual picture of Cincinnati Chili. I apologize for the bits of vomit fleck now resting on your monitor. The picture says "Marinate Me Baby", because that is the City Motto of Cincinnati. It is common in Ohio for women to have "water births" in pools of A-1 steak sauce.
In the spirit of hiring coaches who learned from Al Davis, the Bengals a few years ago signed the guy who actually wanted to BE Al Davis, Hue Jackson. While Al was alive, Hue was a fine coach and actually had the Raiders looking competent on offense. After Al's death, Hue went full Stalin and had several of his top generals executed for treason before being toppled by a populist revolt and sent into exile. He was so successful at running an offense, the Bengals hired him to coach defensive backs. This year he actually gets to run the offense. Best of luck to him.
The quarterback Jackson will be trusting to lead the Bengals offense is none other than Andy Dalton, who has more All-Star Celebrity Softball home runs (2) than playoff touchdowns (1). The Bengals have lost in the first round of the playoffs for four straight years, having been outscored by a combined 103-43. Andy Dalton's contract is for six years and $115 million.
The stadium, named for the aforementioned Paul Brown, was built with public funds in lieu of actually providing education at Cincinnati's numerous public schools. Chad Johnson changed his name to "Ochocinco" not out of vanity, but because the children of Cincinnati have no more foreign language classes and that is the closest they will ever get to learning Spanish. Paul Brown Stadium looks like a Soviet-era bunker in Latvia, where Politburo come and kidnap wife and daughter and potato is only dream of rich man. Such is life. Mike Brown, the owner of the Bengals and son of Paul Brown, is the worst owner in football and made Al Davis look like Mr. Rogers. He is a dweeb of the highest order and his only competition for "most inept owner in sport" is James Dolan, the owner of the New York Knicks.
Brown would love for his team to be terrible and for him to just collect the profits from sad Ohioans who don't know any better until the end of his days without actually having to try to win, but the team lucked into a good defense and a fantastic wide receiver by virtue of their being awful and drafting highly for twenty years. Not everyone can be Akili Smith. Sorry, Mike.
As for this Sunday, the Bengals will be traveling West, where they rarely do well. The Raiders are playing at home, where they have won three straight regular season games. Hue Jackson will be out for revenge against the team that fired him, and Khalil Mack will be out to decapitate someone wearing orange. If you are going to the game on Sunday, I would advise against wearing bright colors as this will only anger Khalil Mack and you may be killed.
Derek Carr has not been great this preseason, but Andy Dalton has been downright putrid, throwing a number of stupid interceptions against a mediocre Buccaneers defense and generally looking like a man who ought not be getting paid $115 million to do what it is he does. Here is how Dalton's game will go on Sunday:
Raiders win, 24-17.