THE DARK SIDE: "Did you really believe I did not see it, youngling?"

Greetings, Raider Nation!

Welcome back to the best blog in the Universe! Miss me?!?!?

Indeed, it was a heart breaking loss..but that’s what happens when you don’t work out the kinks in Pre Season. Derek looked too eager and didn’t have his timing down on several plays. He also held the ball too long in critical situations. The Offensive Line also took a beating against our nemesis; Khalil Mack. Would I take a take a chance at practicing starters in Pre Season? Sure, but possibly for only a few series to avoid injury.

It’s also important to realize how good the LA Chargers actually are. This is the same team that beat the
KC Chiefs AND the AFC Champion Cincinnati Bengals in 2021. They also beat us in the first meeting of the year..
only to eventually fall to our beloved team when it really mattered.
Always remember, we beat this team to get to the Playoffs! Suffer, Bolts!!!!!
I sense new Coach Josh McDaniels is intelligent enough to dissect this loss, evaluate each player and learn from it. We’ll be ready for them when the time comes @ the Death Star..BELIEVE THAT!

"Nobody wins the season in Week 1," Davantae Adams said. "We’re going to be hard on ourselves because that’s the type of team we are and the type of players we have. But we’ll find a way we could have performed better so we can capitalize on some more of those opportunities."
Adams was spectacular as advertised. I had to rub my eyes in the 1st Quarter several times to realize I wasn’t dreaming. He grabbed 10 balls for 141 yards with 1 TD. This is also from a guy who didn’t play in Pre Season…
hmph, go figure?
"It’s kind of a turning the page and starting a new chapter in my career," he said of what the memento meant to him. "To be able to get in the end zone for my childhood team is something that meant a lot to me. Obviously it didn’t end up winning the game, but at the end of the day it still means a lot."
YOU mean a lot to us, DA. You’re going to help us win MANY games this year, brother. Are you ready for a heavy workload?

"That’s what they brought me here for, to be a big part of this offense and help move the ball and put points on the board," he said. "That’s my job. That’s what I’m ready to do. I’m a volume-type guy. I’m always ready for that."
Looks like we found our new work horse!
"The most important thing is for the team to do well," he said. "But if I’m a big part of it in any given game, I’m expecting it."
Reporters also asked Tae if it was frustrating to not get a chance to actually throw the ball on that trick play? (Sacked..ugh)
"It was frustrating to lose yards. I’m not going into every game thinking I really want to throw the ball today, but that was obviously the design of that one, so I wish we could have got it off. It looked like Hunter (Renfrow) was covered anyway, so I’m not sure what that would have looked like. It’s definitely not how we drew it up, so next time we have to do a little better job."
" How is your arm, though?" -Reporter

Last year, Josh Jacobs was the key to victory in defeating the Chargers in the last meeting. I believe he could of had the same kind of impact if he was given more carries. He still had 57 yards with a 5.7 AVG. Jacobs also added another 16 yards on his lone reception of the game. He ran hard and still wanted more from himself.
Josh believed he should have scored on a first-down carry from the 4-yard line in the first quarter. #28 took a pitch around the left edge and was out in space with Foster Moreau engaged with Khalil Mack in front of him and a safety behind them. As Jacobs went to make his cut upfield, he was unable to maintain his footing and went to the turf..
"It was a clear, easy walk-in," he said after the game. "I slipped. I just put that on me. We have to be better."
After two incompletions, the Raiders had to settle for a field goal that tied the score at 3-3.
Jacobs was still thinking about the play after the game was over. "I knew the safety was already outside," Jacobs said of how he saw the play unfolding in front of him. "There was literally nobody there. If he was going to meet me at the goal line, his best bet was to hit me from the side. It was an easy walk-in. I think I just got a little too happy in my mind. (My eyes) got too big and I slipped. I have to be better with that." Jacobs was also asked if he was disappointed that the team ran the ball only 13 times?
"One thing I do know is that we’ll play however we feel is best for that game. One week we might run the ball a lot, and the next week we might throw the ball a lot. I feel like every guy on the team has bought into that, so how it played out is how it played out."

The Team, in general, will get better in the Weeks ahead. This includes great improvement from our Captain QB Derek Carr.

"That’s on me," Carr said. "That’s decisions, being way too aggressive in certain moments."
We forgive you, DC….at least the real ones do! (:

"That is the type of stuff I will learn from and just need to be better for our team," Carr said. "There’s no panic. That’s one of the best teams in the league. It didn’t feel like it was so hard to where we couldn’t accomplish something."

The Chargers can beat anyone when I really think about it. I love the the fact that we stayed in this game until the final minutes.
Ughh... I hated the scheme of 4th Quarter 3rd and 3 play…. where Khalil bullied Kolton Miller to then force DC to fumble. I mean, Ray Charles could of seen that Mack was killing our entire O-line..why not line up a TE to help block that f#er?

OH. YEAH...Hindsight is 20/20!

"It doesn’t matter what type of turnovers they are, you’re just giving the other team extra opportunities to do something with the ball," said Raiders coach Josh McDaniels. " I thought they made a few good plays on the ball, obviously. But before you can win, you have to figure out how to not lose the game."

We’ll figure it out. Great players rebound rapidly.

"We just want to win," Carr said. "We’ll turn on the film and I’ll be better. I made way too many aggressive decisions when I didn’t have to. That’s what it came down to — me forcing the ball to my guys in moments I didn’t need to."

I could see he was kind of juiced up from the beginning. Hell, if you had Davantae Adams, Darren Waller and Hunter Renfrow to throw to, I’m sure you’d act the same way!

"There’s a lot that goes into passing the ball, obviously," McDaniels said before explaining what he uncovered after reviewing film of the loss. "Reading the coverage, making a decision where you want to go with the ball and then obviously the actual mechanics of throwing it the way you want to throw it. Any number of those things could deter us from having success."

Pressure deterred us from having success, in my opinion. The Force was strong with them….but they are not ALL POWERFUL just yet...

"We are not going to overly freak out, but we are going to correct and demand more from myself and more from everybody," Carr said after the game. "We are going to try to move on and get better. That’s the process I believe in. That’s what I believe."
You’ll get it right, DC. I have great faith in all of you next Sunday. Just get the ball out when you really need to!

"I thought we did a decent job in many ways of just giving ourselves a chance to get the ball out on time," McDaniels said. "When we ended up having to hold the ball, that was based on the coverage. I thought they did a good job. They changed up a lot of different things in the secondary, forcing us to hold the ball a little bit on a few things."

I see..this is the big issue of watching games on a small ass 40 inch TV... I can’t see all of the coverage!!! (Heavy Darth breaking)

"I think it happens organically. When we see it clearly, we understand what it is we all need to do a little bit better," McDaniels said, "and then we make those necessary adjustments during the week of practice and then play that way to get the results we’re talking about."
And in spite of all the damn turnovers — one of which led to a late first-half touchdown that pushed the Chargers to a 17-3 lead at halftime, and another that occurred at the Chargers 2-yard-line that denied the Raiders a chance to cut into a 24-13 deficit — they still had possession of the ball with 3:30 remaining, down by five points, with a chance to drive for the game-winning touchdown.

"The opportunity to win was there," left tackle Kolton Miller said.

Hunter Renfrow also said Monday he just has to do a better job getting open. He was blanketed by Bryce Callahan for most of the game. "Everyone just has to be ready for their opportunity," he said. "I have to run a great route and I know (Carr) is going to read it out and get the ball to who it has to get to. … So for me, it’s just running my route hard every time. I don’t think I did a great job of that yesterday." Our Pro Bowl Receiver only had 3 catches for 21 yards. We know you’re better than this, Hunter.

"I really do not care if I have five catches the whole year or a hundred," he said. "If we start trying to see who the ball is being thrown to or this and that, then we’ll be average. We have to take it upon ourselves to have pride and do our best every play."

Reporters asked Coach Brandon Bradley how he felt about the matchup vs Renfrow.

"Bryce Callahan is one of the top inside defenders in the league, and he has been since 2015. You guys are all seeing why we brought him here and why we have so much faith and confidence in him. He’s a prime-time player, and he can do a lot of things out there that help you win games. I’m really proud of him. I know that taking the field with him, it’s a great feeling as a coach."

We’ll work on studying you more, kid.

Reporters also asked Bradley how he felt about not allowing a single sack..

"Well, the reason why Maxx (Crosby) and Chandler (Jones) have a lot of chatter is because they’ve earned it. They’re two of the top players in the league. Certainly, at the front of our minds. They both played really good games for them. They’re just really tough to play against. It takes all 11 to be able to take on those two guys. I thought that our offense really competed. I thought that our offensive line, (rookie) Zion (Johnson) in his first start, just going out there against a group like that and being able to perform. Those five guys playing together, our protection plan, that was outstanding. Justin (Herbert) using his legs, and the receivers and backs doing a good job of getting open. It was a tough game. It was just one of those tough NFL football games today. A well-played game by both teams."

I really thought of Defense could of played better with more pressures and TFLs. At least Jonathan Abrams and Maxx Crosby were tackle MACHINES. (17 w/ 5 assists combined). The Defense did come up big in the 4th Quarter allowing the Offense to have a chance to win. Overall, I believe they did their part.

Coach Josh McDaniels was asked his thoughts of the personal foul call on cornerback Nate Hobbs on a hit to Justin Herbert that gave the Chargers a new set of downs inside the Raiders’ 5-yard line.

"Those are tough ones. I don’t think there was anything egregious on our part, in terms of what Nate was trying to do. I think he was just going to tackle the guy. If the runner has committed to the slide, then we must do everything that we can to pull off him as a tackler. I didn’t think anybody was trying to do something to hurt anybody. I think that is a common and difficult situation that a lot of defenders find themselves in."

Interpretation: BAD CALL ZEBRAS!

Anyone notice the shifting of the O line?

The keepers were Kolton Miller at left tackle, John Simpson at left guard and Andre James at center. On the right side, rookie Dylan Parham started at guard and Jermaine Eluemunor at tackle. As time progressed, Lester Cotton took over at right guard and Thayer Munford at right tackle. Parham and Eluemunor then returned to the game.

Eluemunor said the coaching staff told the linemen a rotation was a possibility to keep everyone fresh. And while Eluemunor said no one likes coming off the field, the players "have to roll with it."

"There are seven guys that deserve the opportunity," McDaniels said. "They have earned the opportunity to do it."
Alex Leatherwood is crying in a beer glass somewhere in Chicago right about now…GOOD!!!!!

Eluemunor said there were positives to build on, even with the multiple line changes. "I feel that we’re all familiar with each other, and we learned a lot about each other today," he said. "We have a lot of positives going into the next game, and obviously there’s more we can do to help the team win."

I beg you, Coach McDaniels..bring in TE to help block!!! Foster Moreau can help these big cats dramatically!!!!

"You gotta ball out regardless," he said. "You have to do your job at the highest ability — that’s what is expected out of all of us. That’s what we expect out of each other, too."

Every group gets better with more reps. I believe in ya, BIGS!!!



Cornerback Anthony Averett will miss at least four games after he was placed on injured reserve after breaking his thumb during Sunday’s loss to the Chargers. He will miss at least the next four games. The Raiders filled the roster spot by claiming cornerback Javelin Guidry off waivers from the Cardinals.

Coach Josh McDaniels confirmed Monday that starting center Andre James was able to return home late Sunday night after being evaluated for a concussion following the loss to the Chargers.
"Andre is back here now, which is a good thing," McDaniels said. "That was a little bit of a concern last night, so we did the right thing there. But he’s here, he came back last night."

The Raiders were docked for just three penalties, equaling the season-low from last year from the home win over the Broncos in December.
AMAZING! I guess that’s why y’all run laps!

Next Sunday the AZ Cardinals are traveling to the DEATH STAR seeking their 1st victory with Kyle Murray, Marquise Brown, James Conner and Greg Dortch! How dare they even believe?!?!? CLOBBERIN’ TIME!!!!
Darth Raider, Sith Lord Leonard and Dark Side Danielle will be there to watch them crumble against our angry AF Raiders! Let’s get back on track and make these birds pay for even stepping on the same field as us! GO RAIDERS!!!!!