Greetings, Raider Nation! It is I, Raiderdamus the Great and Powerful. Today we know Raiderdamus as the Internet’s preeminent football sage, the provost of prognosticators, and the father of foresight, but it was not always this way. There was a time, before I became acquainted with the Great Beyond and his inerrant wisdom, that I made some predictions which did not come true.
There were times when I was wrong, but not spectacularly so. As a lad I told my family that the 2000 Ravens would not be able to score on the Raiders defense in the AFC Championship Game. They only managed to score 16 points, but the Raiders only scored 3, thanks to noted fat bastard Tony Siragusa. The Ravens would go on to demolish the Giants in the Super Bowl, cementing their status as one of the best defensive teams of all time. Oakland would surely have destroyed New York in a similar fashion, given the opportunity.
The time when I was most grievously wrong, and the time where it cost the Raiders the most, was when the Raiders selected Andrew Walter in the third round of the 2005 NFL Draft.
“This guy has the most passing touchdowns in Pac-10 history!” I said, to anyone who would listen. “He’s great! He’ll be the Raiders’ quarterback of the future!”
Indeed, since the untimely demise of Rich Gannon at the hands of the aforementioned fatass Siragusa, the Raiders have been looking for their next franchise quarterback. Having watched Walter at Arizona State, I was thoroughly convinced that he was going to be the guy. In his senior season of 2004, Walter ran roughshod through the Pac-10, securing every major passing record at Arizona State (including most of Jake Plummer’s records) and eclipsed John Elway’s Pac-10 passing touchdown record.
Walter began the 2005 season behind Kerry Collins and fellow Pac-10 legend Marques Tuiasosopo on the Oakland depth chart. He got his chance to play in 2006 when starting QB Aaron Brooks proved to be terrible and then got injured. Walter led the Raiders to their first win on October 22 against the Cardinals, and then beat the Steelers the following week. Those were the only two wins Oakland would get that year.
Brooks won the job back from Walter, who wasn’t very good. The entire Raiders team wasn’t very good in 2006. But if Walter had been better, then maybe the Raiders wouldn’t have taken his replacement with the first overall pick in 2007, Jamarcus Russell, setting the Raiders back another six years dealing with his particular brand of idiocy.
When Walter was drafted, I expected a player somewhere on the spectrum between Joe Flacco and Case Keenum. What we got was Geno Smith. Walter sat behind Russell for the next few years, and was released in 2009 having compiled a career completion percentage of 52.3%. He threw three touchdowns and 13 interceptions. It was at that point I learned that just because I watched a player do well in college did not mean he would do equally well in the NFL. It was a hard pill to swallow, not only to be so wrong, but for my entire thought process to be exposed as fraudulent. It took until the 2014 Draft with the selection of Derek Carr for the Raiders to get their real franchise signal caller. Desperation can make a man believe anything.
As for what Walter is up to these days, we need only consult his Wikipedia page and find a paragraph which was almost certainly written by Andrew Walter himself:
“After choosing to leave the NFL at age 27, Walter was the first player to participate in the NFL Player Development Internship Program in commercial real estate at CB Richard Ellis in Phoenix. Walter then returned to Arizona State University to earn an MBA from the W.P. Carey School of Business.
Walter founded and serves as the managing partner of Andrew Walter Holdings, a senior secured business lending firm. He’s undertaking another lending project called Redlands Capital, which will serve as the next generation to his start-up business. Walter has gained additional underwriting experience as a credit analyst at MidFirst Bank.
Walter lost in the 2014 Republican primary election against Wendy Rogers for the House of Representatives seat in Arizona’s 9th congressional district.”
He seems to be doing better now than he did getting bombasted behind Oakland’s pathetic offensive line. Good on him, but I’ll always remember him as the worst prediction the Great Raiderdamus ever made.
But what about you, Raider Nation? Was there a time when you were absolutely sure about how a free agent signing, draft pick, or a new coaching hire would do, and then turned out to have egg on your face? Did you think someone would suck and then they were great, or were you convinced someone would be amazing and they were Javon Walker? Raiderdamus would love to hear about it, and join you in your misery and embarrassment.
Share your own stories in the comments!