Just win, baby!
Not always pretty, at times frustrating, the Oakland Raiders and Kansas City Chiefs authored yet another classic chapter in a book known as ‘The Best Rivalry in Pro Football’.
Both teams overcame what will certainly go down as one of the worst officiated games you’ll ever see. Phantom fouls led to yellow flags flying more frequently than private jets during the Cannes film festival but not even that could ruin a vintage 23-20 overtime thriller of a Raider victory.
First things first: let’s give Jacoby Ford the game ball right now. The rookie from Clemson proved there’s more to his game than his 40-yard dash time. With the Raiders desperately needing a lift, Ford’s 94-yard kick return lit the fuse that eventually exploded with Sebastian Janikowski’s game winning field goal in OT.
Ford is not a one trick pony. Of the 6 six balls Jacoby caught for 148 yards, three were as clutch as clutch gets. One was a ridiculous grab from his knees, another was an INT waiting to happen that Ford somehow turned into the game-tying grab and the last was a 47-yard burner that setup the game winning field goal.
Nothing would deny the Raiders a well deserved 3-game win streak today.
Tom Cable has officially changed the culture in Oakland and restored Raider mystique. Yeah, I said it! The Raiders are back and if you don’t believe me then check the 3-0 record against AFC West opponents.
Kansas City was supposed to be able to run the rock down Oakland’s throat. Well, the Chiefs choked, running the ball 34 times and gaining just 104 yards, a good 90 below their season average.
In fact, KC never truly threatened the Raiders as both of their TDs were a result of controversial calls.
Respect due, both of Matt Cassel’s TD tosses were legit. The first was a sick grab by former Cal Bear Verran Tucker and the second was a strike to Dwayne Bowe that caught the confused Raiders off-guard.
What was not legit were the plays that helped to setup those scores.
With Chris Johnson in perfect position – playing the ball – a hideous PI was called. Then, a fumble on a punt return that occurred when Nick Miller was clearly down helped to create the second score. Cable foots some of the blame for burning both of his challenges in the first half but this officiating crew had better be under review by Roger Goodell first thing Monday morning if the commish wants to ensure his league isn’t going the way of Vince McMahon and the WWE.
Cable got his group to move on and move to within a half game of first place.
This game was about as beautiful as Khloe Kardashian rolling out of bed at 5am on two hours rest. Jason Campbell didn’t exactly put an indelible stamp on the QB job and more injuries mounted as both Rolando McClain and Tyvon Branch left the game.
Still, this team found a way to win.
Janikowski exorcised the demons he resurrected with his miss in Arizona. Khalif Barnes came up with the biggest moment he’ll likely ever have in his career.
Not pretty but a beauty pageant this wasn’t.
This was a good, old fashioned, Raiders-Chiefs football game and the Silver and Black won.
Oh…did I mention that Cable has officially exorcised the demons in Oakland? KC was riding a seemingly never ending winning streak in the East Bay before Sunday.
Congrats to Cable and respect due to Al Davis. His vision of resurrecting Raider football has finally come to fruition. A team filled with size and speed has proven to be more than a track team. This is a hungry group of football players with a thirst for the playoffs.
Normally, you’d think a bye week in the middle of a win streak would be a bad thing. With an injury list longer than excuses provided by Todd Haley, this Raider team desperately deserves rest.
Aside from those three wins, the next streak that must remain intact is the second consecutive sellout that awaits in three weeks time when the Miami Dolphins come to town.
Topics: Al Davis, Chris Johnson, Dwayne Bowe, Jacoby Ford, Jason Campbell, Khalif Barnes, Matt Cassel, Nick Miller, Roger Goodell, Rolando McClain, Sebastian Janikowski, Todd Haley, Tom Cable, Tyvon Branch, Verran Tucker