Here is the opening to my column from the Raiders loss to the Chargers:


Think of the Raiders’ Monday home opener as a play. A bunch of talented people with big money put together a show. They previewed this show out of town, and after many rehearsals and much fine tuning, they opened to a sold-out house and great hopes. All the critics showed up, and there was a sense of great anticipation.

That’s the Raiders’ story except they had more than a sold-out house. They had the entire nation watching on Monday Night Football because this really was a brand-new play with a new script and a new director and a new producer. Everything was brand new.

To read the full column, click here.

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  1. Streetglide

    Lowell-san, here’s why the Raiders lost: whenever they made even the most modest play, they pointed hither and yonder, fist pumped and acted like fools. The Niners did that under recent regimes; under Harbaugh they expect to make the great play. It’s no biggie, they just move on.
    When those Bozos over in Oaktown stop acting like the best high school team in Whistlestop Arkansas, they might have a chance. Until then, it’s just more of the same crappy play they have pedaled for years…

    September 11th, 2012 6:09 am

  2. Stan

    The RAIDER offense stunk from the first series. I see Greg Napp is just a dead man walking as OC. Like with Singletary’s era..I know a dead end when I see it. Dennis Allen better wake up fast. He’s got some DMW dripping himself.
    NEVER higher defensive guys as head coach. NEVER.

    September 11th, 2012 7:41 am

  3. Stan

    Also Lowell…Volgy pre Melky investigation and suspension: 21 starts,2.27 ERA. Post Melky investigation and suspension?: 6 starts,9.57 ERA.
    Some might say coincidence…others might say,lack of uhem,”vitamins” or a guilty conscience at work ..or both.
    Something to consider,Hmm?..

    September 11th, 2012 8:56 am

  4. Dennis

    This comes as a shock to me, but I agree with everything Stan just said. Both posts.
    Didn’t look to me like Allen made the slightest dent in changing the Raiders self destruct culture. Untimely penalties, unforced errors. This had that look, as the song goes “meet the new boss, same as the old boss”. Allen may make a good coach the second time around, like Belichick. But unfortunately for the Raiders this is the first time around. I think Stan is right. I saw a little bit of DWM last night. Or maybe that was just Allen’s ‘deer in the head lights’ look. Hard to tell.


    September 11th, 2012 9:09 am

  5. Dennis

    I forgot to comment on Stan’s second post. Interesting how the Giant’s pitching has slumped since Melky got caught. I think this may be more wide spread than Volgy.

    Only time will tell. Good thing they are hitting right now. Maybe the piching will come back.

    September 11th, 2012 9:13 am

  6. Shane

    Stan- NEVER hire defensive guys? Worked out for the Patriots.

    September 11th, 2012 9:19 am

  7. Frank in Minnesota

    Here’s is where it gets interesting… how does the Raiders brain trust handle this next game? Will there be an improvement or a farce of a ‘performance’ again?

    September 11th, 2012 9:22 am

  8. Shane

    Lowell- begging your pardon, one thing the Raiders don’t have is skilled players on offense. It’s Palmer, McFadden and a bunch of other guys. If they did, we’d have seen them last night. No established WRs, and I honestly don’t know if there is a tight end on the roster.

    McKenzie, Allen and company have a big task ahead. It’s been known that they needed to dig out of all the cap shenanigans of the Davis regime. that reality was very apparent last night. The offense is thin.

    It’s not going to happen overnight. Last night wasn’t good, fans just have to hope that Moore and Ford can contribute when they get back.

    September 11th, 2012 9:26 am

  9. RC

    They keep using McFadden like that and he will never make it through the season.

    Couple of key players were out on O Hill and Ford, that needs to be taken under consideration.

    For the most part I thought the D played well, given the spots they found they found themselves in. Auspicious start for Allen, only up from here….hopefully.

    September 11th, 2012 9:28 am

  10. Tiburon Dave

    The lack of NFL caliber talent on this team is just astounding…

    There is no tight end and none of the other ‘skill’ players know how to run a route.

    I can’t even tell if the QB has anything left because he only has two guys to throw the ball to.

    And MacFadden?

    They’re going to get that man killed…

    I know you said you wanted them to succeed but this was just a disgrace…

    September 11th, 2012 9:30 am

  11. Mark M

    Comedy is right. I thought of nothing but one liners while watching that mess.

    Did the Raiders get the memo that the pre-season was over?

    How do you go from being one of the bright, fresh, young minds of the league to being the clown that leads this circus in one night?

    Did you notice how empty the stadium was for the whole second half, especially at the end despite the fact that the Raiders were technically alive in this game through the final seconds?

    Raider fan is probably digging a hole 50′ deep to live in for the next 6 months. The local media MIGHT be tired of lambasting and ridiculing them by then.

    Berman and Dilfer should be banned from the broadcast booth for a year for repetitive lying in the hopeless attempt at making that game interesting at all.

    The Chargers should throw that win back like a fish too small, or a Cubs fan in the outfield bleachers disgusted by the other team’s homer ball.

    What a fiasco, especially after watching some pretty decent football this past weekend.

    September 11th, 2012 9:51 am

  12. Stan

    Me..and all Raider fans are more “Sons of Al Davis” then Mark. If you turn your back on vertical and WCO..you better win.
    Don’t local teams get it? Stanford was loved under H-man..he ran WCO. Now,Niner fans are delirious again. And Raider fans want that too. WHY the hell bring in Palmer to dump off? That’s crazy useless for the money spent.
    Don’t give me Jacoby Ford was out..you STILL stretch the field..make NEW heroes of the Raider subs. Allen played not to lose . Hell with that.

    September 11th, 2012 11:19 am

  13. Stan

    And thanks Dennis!

    September 11th, 2012 11:37 am

  14. Steve

    Well, at least they can’t blame the replacement refs. The Raiders are basking in the legacy of Al Davis. Hue Jackson’s ill-conceived trade for Carson Palmer will haunt them for years. He wasn’t that good in his prime (if you can call his Bengal days prime), but now he’s just awful. Interesting that they only job Jackson could get was as some nondescript coach with, guess who, the Bengals! Tommy Kelly needs to be cut; he’s nothing more than an overweight penalty machine. An empty space in his place would be more effective. Next loss: September 16 at Miami. They will wilt in the heat by the third quarter. Can’t wait for your next entertaining column about this ragtag bunch.

    September 11th, 2012 11:45 am

  15. lameduck

    I think the Raiders are too fragile to be aggressive on offense. DMC stopped running hard after a big hit early on. They seemed to lack the will to win.

    September 11th, 2012 2:39 pm

  16. Albert Park

    Berman and Dilfer were a vast improvement over Gruden and his buddy. Minimum B.S and you hardly heard the word “FOOTBALL” all evening! I’ll vote to keep ‘em.

    September 11th, 2012 2:50 pm

  17. Dennis

    lameduck, “They seemed to lack the will to win.”

    They lacked a lot more than that. They lacked talent to win, starting with a back up long snapper.

    September 11th, 2012 3:16 pm

  18. chris

    I guess you have to give this new regime 3 years to know if they can turn things around, but after the first game all I can say is…….hiring Reggie as GM looks like a major bust
    ……..he fires Hue Jackson who had the offense moving the ball with no running game, because Reggie wanted “his guy”………well thats fine if you have someone in mind as “my Guy”……but Reggie obviously didn’t since he hired a guy who has no experience as a head coach.
    Just like Mark Davis had to get help with hiring a GM because he’s clueless about running a team, Reggie needed help in hiring a coach because he’s never had to that before. He’s a player personel guy, not a GM…….not yet at least……..
    All the Raiders needed to do to improve from last years 8-8 record was hire a new defensive coordinator and fill some holes on defense, which Hue Jackson woulduv done They had a solid offense but now it sucks.
    This 2012 team will be lucky to win 2 games this year……I’m glad AL Davis isn’t around to see this mess.

    September 11th, 2012 3:48 pm

  19. Lo Sbandato

    It’s a failure of imagination by the coaching staff. The offense was one-dimensional to a ludicrous degree. Punting by definition is the result of failure, and to have no reliable back-up for this situation is reinforcing failure, the most grievous error on can commit (see the Fed for a sterling non-sporting example).

    September 11th, 2012 4:03 pm

  20. Lo Sbandato

    And by the way something, extending the show biz metaphor, the cast was the same bunch of useless mugs who’ve “starred” in many straight-to-video flops over the last few seasons.

    September 11th, 2012 4:05 pm

  21. lameduck

    All said, I think the Raiders can beat the Dolphins on Sunday.

    Maybe the Chargers deserve a little credit…

    September 11th, 2012 5:12 pm

  22. mendozaline

    Grampa Wowell, I am still trying to digest this rooting for your column and not for the local teams position. I understand your new rooting interest in the Raiders. But, given a choice of only 1 of 2 things happening, would you rather see the Raiders do well under their new regime, or fly with Grant to New Orleans to cover the 49ers in the Super Bowl? I wish you both.

    September 11th, 2012 5:23 pm

  23. loneraider78

    It’s one game. One game.

    It was a big one, no question. But some of these comments are just as comical as the special teams fiasco that took place. After four preseason games and 60 minutes of regular season play Allen is a “DMW” already Stan???

    Granted, I was not pleased to see he chose Knapp for his OC because I hate re-runs. Knapp had the personnel excuse last time, but that is no longer the issue. His gameplan was pathetic.
    But I’m not ready to start making guys walk the plank. And I’m sure McKenzie is willing to be patient. This is not Al Davis’ show anymore, where if it doesn’t happen now there may not be another chance. McKenzie will give Allen time to get this thing right.

    Why don’t we focus on the positive. How about the fact that SD only got nine points out of that whole debacle with the punt team.

    How about the fact that they were missing three of their top WRs…again. The entire time Palmer has been here his offense has never been fully together.

    Thus doesn’t excuse the poor play at times, but wow let’s not start decapitating people just yet.

    September 11th, 2012 5:46 pm

  24. CohnZohn

    mendozaline, It would be nice if the Raiders and 49ers both do well. It’s fun to write about good teams, teams that play meaningful games. But if they don’t do well, I’ll write about them anyway, and I’ll still love my family and read good books and drink good wine.

    September 11th, 2012 5:47 pm

  25. Stan

    LoneRaider,this smells of another Art Shell. Just a season flushed down the drain. Arghh!! After lasts years tantalizing return to respectful…this embarrassment?….Arghhh!!!

    September 11th, 2012 6:19 pm

  26. loneraider78

    Stan, some very very good coaches have started their tenures with losing seasons–yes plural. I believe any team with this many new pieces needs time to develop chemistry all the way from the top down. Preseason games and four quarters of the real thing is not enough to gauge how this will go.

    I always go back to Chuck Noll (maybe you’ve heard of him) he didn’t have a winning season until his fourth, and then went on to win four Super Bowls.

    I understand the league is different now, and everything has to happen NOW. And I despise that outlook. In that respect, I’m glad Al Davis is no longer running things. If they stick to the plan and give Allen at least three years I believe things will turn around.

    I’ve been waiting for a winner practically my whole life, then Rich gannon came along. Now we have to wait again. Hopefully it will be worth it. I think it will.

    September 11th, 2012 8:02 pm

  27. Johnc

    I was wondering what Al Davis would say from the grave. Perhaps we should wait for another encore performance for that zinger
    That was a fine example of self implosion and you had to laugh..it was like a Black comedy or rather a black and silver comedy.

    September 12th, 2012 12:12 am

  28. B-Rad

    But Raider fans must be pleased that Dennis Allen & Gregg Knapp feel
    comfortable enough with McFadden’s health to give him :
    1 – 15 carries
    2 – 13 pass receptions
    3 – 5 incomplete passes directed to him

    That’s getting him, or trying to get him, the ball on 33 of 69 offensive plays.

    It’s difficult to understand how the Special Teams Coordinator could
    not have a backup long-snapper ready to go.

    September 12th, 2012 9:31 am

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