Oakland Raiders: Notes and Observations From Week Three

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Sep 27, 2015; Cleveland, OH, USA; Oakland Raiders wide receiver Andre Holmes (18) celebrates his second quarter touchdown against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

Just Win, Baby

This Raiders team is doing something Raiders teams of the past dozen years or so haven’t been able to do — they’re finding ways to win.

It hasn’t been pretty and it hasn’t been without their moments of anxiety, but this young Raiders squad isn’t folding up their tents when adversity hits like some of the Raider teams of the past decade have. This Raiders team is scuffling, fighting, and clawing their way out of the hole. They’re sacrificing for each other and making the smart plays. This team is finding a way — and the will — to persevere and win.

Granted, it’s two games. And they were games against the Ravens and the Browns, who aren’t exactly the Patriots and Packers.

But it doesn’t matter. What does matter is that team is building confidence and building swagger. They’re finding ways to dig deep within themselves when adversity hits rather than just roll over and let the other team walk all over them.

Those are all attributes that will be incredibly beneficial to this Oakland squad moving forward. Yes, they need to develop that killer instinct to help them put a team away when they have their foot on their throats. But that will come.

What’s important right now is that this team learns how to win — and how to lose. If last season’s Raiders squad had suffered the blowout defeat to the Bengals in week one, they may have never recovered. In fact, we saw that very thing play out over the first ten weeks of the season when Oakland amassed a perfect 0-10 record.

But this year’s team took that one on the chin and came back the next week ready to rumble. They used a strong, determined effort to overcome the in-game adversity and found a way to win. That is a more important learning tool than anything Del Rio and his staff can give them. They found a way to cope with a loss and then turned around and found a way to win.

It’s not always going to be pretty. It may very well sometimes be downright ugly. But the important thing is that this team is learning how to win.

Just win, baby. That’s all that matters.

Next: Oakland Raiders Exorcise Old Ghosts In Win