Obviously I’m an obsessive Raider fan. You don’t compile volumes of Raider rants in cyberspace without consuming a steady diet of all things Silver and Black. I pride myself on hanging in there for every second of every game no matter the final outcome.
Obviously I’m dancing around the true nature of this post. I need to admit something. Back in 2008, the last time the Raiders and Falcons met as they will again this Sunday, I walked out of the game in the second quarter with the Falcons leading 21-0.
Anyone that remembers that game can’t hold it against me. The final score ended up being 24-0 but the Falcons really put it to bed in the first quarter. After that there was nothing to see.
A then rookie Matt Ryan moved the rock with ease as Atlanta unleashed a no-huddle onslaught on Oakland scoring touchdowns on their first three drives. Ryan picked on DeAngelo Hall like the gotcha media does Sarah Palin when discussing current news events or the menu at Denny’s. It would be Hall’s farewell moment to Raider Nation, his Raider days lasting all of 8 weeks after inking a seven-year deal in the offseason.
That was one of the more depressing moments I’ve had in my years of Raider fandom. I can only pray not to relive it again this Sunday.
If I’m being honest though this Sunday’s game has me nervous.
Last time around we had to suffer through a 6 for 19 effort embarrassment from JaMarcus Russell. No way Carson Palmer stinks it up in Russell style…not even on his worst day.
However what I am nervous about is what an improved Falcons attack can do against a wounded Raiders defense. Back in ’08 Michael Turner and Atlanta ran all over Oakland. Turner racked up 139 of Atlanta’s unreal 252 yards rushing while Ryan threw for 220 yards and 2 TDs.
Oh, did we forget that game was in the East Bay too?
On Sunday Oakland heads to A-Town where the undefeated and high-powered Falcons await…gulp.
Making my Raiders angst even more troubling is the fact that these Falcons are much more deadly than those dirty birds of ’08. And Oakland’s defense is surely not any better than the one that got rolled back then. In fact, these Raiders have yet to even intercept an opponent’s pass in 2012.
I don’t want to have to relive that nightmare all over again. Problem is this Sunday’s game will only go one of two ways. Either the refreshed Raiders bounce back from their bye week with the best performance of the season be it a win or a loss. Or I’ll be banging away on Monday about why I walked out on my second Raider game in four years – both against the Falcons.