Oakland Raiders: 3 Keys to Defeating the Dolphins in Week 2


Dec. 4, 2011; Miami, FL, USA; Oakland Raiders fullback Marcel Reece (45) during a game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

Let’s Go Fishing!

I am very excited to go on this fishing trip. It has tremendous potential with a great upside.

The Raiders have not played well against the Miami Dolphins for a while; the Silver and Black have lost the last six of seven contests. The Raiders last won in 2007 with a 35-17 win. The Men in Black lead the series against the Fish 19-15-1.

Miami comes into the Week 2 clash 0-1, just like the visiting Raiders. Reggie Bush and Daniel Thomas tote the note for Miami. Last week, between the dynamic duo, they had 80 yards on 17 carries. QB Ryan Tannehill was a woeful 20/36 for 219 yards, which earned him a QB ranking of a 39.0.

Tannehill did have some help as he tossed the ball to seven different receivers during the game. Leading the way for Miami was Brian Hartline. The fourth-year man caught three passes for 50 yards for a 16.7 average. Last year, Hartline had 35 receptions for 549 yards but no touchdowns.

Reggie Bush looked Radierish by catching six passes out of the backfield for 46 yards and a 7.7 yard average.

The Dolphins came away from their game with Houston with 10 points on the scoreboard. That in itself should give the Nation a glimmer of a victory on the East coast.

Afraid of Change

Remember: change is good, or maybe not?

That’s not always true, as we go back to last week’s epic failure. Opening kick-off return was bobbled, dropped, and almost turned over to the Chargers on the first play of the game. Not Good!

Rod Streeter makes a good catch and then is struggling for extra yardage and gets hit and bam! He fumbles the ball. Not Good!

The Raiders go into the Pate Jr. High Playbook for a trick play and come up with… fake reverse, fumble. Well, if it worked in practice, it should work on Monday Night Football.

It didn’t. Not Good!

Not last but definitely close, Travis Goethel, the back up snapper for the Raiders. He is now a household name, and has had his 30 seconds of fame. Every back up long snapper in the NFL is practicing because of Travis’ trilogy of poor snaps. Have the back up ready. Not good!

The envelope please: Have more than one quality receiver on the roster, I am not buying what you’re putting out there. You have a quality running back, a quality QB, and a quality offensive line.

Then you have a game show, “Who wants to be an NFL receiver for a day?”. Go get some quality and have the full package. The front office is above this!

Going Fishing at the Right Time

Timing is everything

With all that said, the second week in the season is the week you will see more improvement than any other week in the year. We have seen what is wrong; we are now going to make it right.

Darren McFadden can not run the ball 30 times and catch the ball out of the backfield 13. Let him do what he does best, run the ball. 15 attempts for 32 yards is sad and pitiful for this smash and bash running back. Give him the ball 25-30 times and live with the results.

Special teams are one third of the game, and the Raiders botched it with blocked punts, poor snaps, bobbled catches and poor returns. Sebastian Janikowski saved the nation by blasting 2/2 field goals to keep the Black and Silver close.

Miami is going to try to throw deep on the corners of the Raiders – and rightfully so, as the coverage was one step behind on the Charger receivers. Man-to-man looked like ghost coverage (nobody there). Underneath coverage was manageable but still needs improvement.

From what was seen against the Chargers, the Black and Silver defense has a foundation they can build on. Tommy Kelly, Richard Seymour, Miles Burris and Phillip Wheeler will run to the ball and deliver.

Knowledge is the Key

The more knowledge and experience you have, the better your chances.

I appreciate Coach Allen taking responsibility for the long-snapping snafu. He knows the buck stops with him and he is making head way in the program.

With seconds left in the first half ,the Raiders were at the Chargers’ one yard line. Allen went for the field goal.

It is what you do. The Raiders needed that touchdown, a tie for the home team. That score would have sent a loud message to the Chargers. They were on Monday Night Football, and on the one yard line. Allen was making his debut as coach as the “new” Raiders organization was making its debut.

The Raiders, notorious for penalties, had six for 35 yards last week. A grand response to a team experiment in self-discipline.

“Once we accept our limits, we go beyond them.” -Albert Einstein.

You’ve seen your limits, now accelerate past them!