Oakland Raiders vs. Kansas City Chiefs in the Pride Bowl

Pulp Fiction is a great movie. It marked Quentin Tarantino's rise to fame, of course, as he capitalized off of Reservoir Dogs. Nonetheless, in Pulp Fiction, Marcellus Wallace had a conversation with Butch (Bruce Willis) regarding Butch taking the fall in a boxing match as he was believed to be too old to win.

"The night of the fight, you may feel a slight sting. That's pride f***ing with you. F**k pride. Pride only hurts, it never helps."

As much as I love that movie and love the character, that's not true. Pride helps, pride can help build off a foundation and move into the future. Kansas City is already heading to the playoffs when it faces Oakland today. Regardless of the game's outcome, the Chiefs have worked themselves in as the representative of the AFC West, but Oakland? They're going to be watching the rest of the season from the luxury of their own homes. Some may contemplate the next move of their career some may not even come back.

Kansas City has the chance to earn the third seed in the playoffs, instead of the fourth, which may help their march in the postseason, but Oakland? They're playing for pride. Sure, against the Colts they got a shot of reality and it didn't go down well. It probably tasted like spoiled milk and oysters, but the shot made them see. They have nothing more to play for: no playoff implications or chance at the Super Bowl, but a chance to make a jump, and for the first time in a long time, end the season with a .500 record.

That's pride, ladies and gentlemen.

Maybe to the fans of the Patriots, Colts and Steelers, 8-8 is far from pride. It's more "average," but it is quite understandable. These franchises have grown used to winning, whereas Oakland fans hope for the best, and the best usually means us winning more than five games recently. But on Sunday, we have the opportunity to break even and show the rest of the NFL that we are for real and going to be a contender ...

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