Oakland Raiders: It’s Only One Game, People

I woke up on the morning of September 12th early and excited.  10:00AM local time could not come soon enough.  A number of friends were coming over to take in the first game of the new season.  A new season in which we were all optimistic and hopeful for change. 

Yes the Raiders were opening on the road against one of the best running backs and defenses in the league.  But I was convinced we were going to upset the Titans.

From the opening kickoff there was clearly something wrong.  Figurs almost fumbled the return. 

The heir apparent to the QB throne in Oakland came on the field.  He’s supposed to be the savior, the one that’s going to lead this once proud franchise back to glory and another Lombardi trophy. 

He was compared to Jim Plunkett, in both ability and the situation in which he arrived in Oakland.  From the moment he stepped on the field it was clear that the weight of the franchise was resting on his shoulders.  The chance to succeed rested with him, at least in his mind. 

The memory of the hit he took in the preseason game against the 49ers was obviously still lingering as well.  Gone was the confidence and poise the nation had come to expect.  He was anxious and jumpy. 

The first play of the game was a screen pass that was almost intercepted.  Two plays later the Raiders were punting.  I looked around the room I was sitting in at the collection of Raider fans.  Not one of them was saying anything, but we all had the same look. “here we go again”.

On the ensuing drive Vince and Chris Johnson were moving the ball.  Things didn’t seem to be going the Raiders way when all of a sudden Young was sacked and fumbled the ball turning it over to Richard Seymour and the Raiders. 

The Raiders proceeded to march down the field and ...

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