Oakland Raiders vs. San Diego Chargers: Game Day Open Thread


The Oakland Raiders are squaring off in a clash that will bring one era to a close and may be the end of another.

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The Oakland Raiders are hosting the San Diego Chargers in a Christmas Eve tilt that is guaranteed to be highly emotionally charged. Not only may this be the final NFL game played in Oakland, this will definitely be the final game of a true legend of the sport – Charles Woodson.

The stadium situation in Oakland is – unsettled. To say the least. This could break a million different ways depending upon the upcoming NFL owner’s vote. There is more wheeling, dealing, and behind the scenes backstabbing than in your average episode of House of Cards. And of course, how the vote shakes out will boil down to one thing – money.

All of the owners are clamoring for a slice of the money pie that Los Angeles represents. The Rams, the Chargers, and the Raiders all have their factions in their corners. The word right now is that no one team has enough votes to win approval for the move to LA. Which is where all of the behind the scenes jockeying and back room deals comes in to play.

As it stands, LA could wind up with one, two, or zero teams next season. It will be a fascinating process to see play out.

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But more importantly – and far more relevant – right now, is the impending retirement of a genuine legend of the game. There is no value that can be placed on what Woodson has meant to the team. His leadership has helped transform this team, has made this a team that can’t be taken lightly, and has helped make this Raiders squad a team on the rise.

The results since he returned to Oakland haven’t been what he – or the fans – might have hoped for. He knowingly came home into an absolute mess of an organization. Still struggling to get out from under the salary cap hell Al Davis unfortunately left the team in – not to mention the draft pick mismanagement the team inflicted upon itself – Woodson came in and took it upon himself to be a leader, to help change the culture of a franchise floundering in abject misery, and help put this team back on the road to success.

You can spend all day talking about the career stats Woodson put up. You can praise all of his accomplishments, his laundry list of awards and accolades. But that doesn’t even come close to truly describing the impact Woodson has had on this team or the game of football itself.

After eighteen seasons, he is leaving as one of the all time greats who ever put on a pair of cleats. His absence will leave a gaping void in Oakland’s secondary next season. And not just in terms of a secondary who can’t afford to lose a top tier player. The void he will leave on the franchise will be felt in the locker room and within the halls of Oakland’s headquarters itself.

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With so much emotion surging through the players, with it radiating form the fans as they bid a final home farewell to one of the best ever to don the Silver and Black, expect the Raiders to come out flying against the Chargers. Expect them to put up the best sixty minutes of football they have all season long. And expect them to come away with a win. The Raiders may not be able to send Woodson off into the sunset with a Lombardi trophy, but at least they can send him off the home field one last time with a win.

Next: Raiders Must Say Goodbye to a Legend At Season's End

How do you see this playing out? How do you expect Woodson’s absence to impact the team moving forward? What is the way forward for the team without him? How do you feel about Woodson’s retirement? How does it affect you as a fan?

This is your place to talk about the game and all things Raiders. This is your platform to talk about whatever is on your mind. Let’s hear your thoughts and opinions. So step up and speak out.