Those Whacky Raiders Are at it Again

That’s what everyone must be saying after details of the Rich Gannon ban became public.

I’ve got to agree with Jerry Mac, David White, the AP’s Dubow, and even Tim Kawakami on this one.

Gannon was a truth machine.  His comments were based on facts and his experiences with the team.  Sure, the truth hurts, especially when you’ve been so bad for half a decade.  It’s the man’s job as a broadcaster to comment on these things and what he said had mostly already been said on Raider blogs and by loyal Raider fans everywhere.  Yes, I said loyal.  You can be critical and yet still be loyal.

This Herrera guy should shut up.  Is Davis actually sanctioning what this guy’s saying?  The word “clown” comes to mind whenever this guy talks. First there was the bizarre Kawakami press conference incident last year, now this.  The Raiders really need some competent PR people.  Here’s a sample of what he said:

“Rich Gannon is not welcome here.”

“He was one of the least popular players with his teammates that we ever had here and he still can’t seem to get over the fact that he played the worst game in Super Bowl history.  He threw five interceptions and three of them were returned for touchdowns. He has blamed everyone else for that.”

“I guess it’s our fault he threw five interceptions.”

“He’s attacked us on a regular basis since becoming a member of the media,” Herrera said. “After affording him the opportunity to establish a career here, he has since gone on to attack us in a way that’s totally unacceptable.”

No, Herrera.  What is totally unacceptable is the way Oakland handled this situation. Banning one of their all-time greats because he hurt their pride is unacceptable.

What does Gannon’s Super Bowl meltdown have to do with him being brutally honest? His brutal honesty was probably the reason he was unpopular with his teammates.  The team was full of slackers and underachievers and Al Davis scholarship players.  He came to the Raiders at a time when they desperately needed his leadership.  And I’ve never heard him deflect the blame for that Super Bowl performance.

Herrera also used Gannon’s “they should just blow up the building and start all over again” quote as a reason to ban him, citing that it’s improper to use such words in a post 9/11 society.  I think the fact that Herrera related that quote to 9/11 is more inappropriate than Gannon’s words.

In the end, the Raiders relented and lifted the ban.  Well, they had to anyway because of NFL rules.

I think I speak for many Raiders fans when I say that I was proud of the Rich Gannon years and what he did to lift the team to greatness.  He was simply doing his job when he was critical of the team.  He always qualified his comments by saying it hurt him to watch the team in its current tailspin.  I wish Rich was still at QB or at the very least in a coaching capacity with the team.  His knowledge and dedication to the game is sorely needed.  I guess that will never happen.

Now….banning Warren Sapp?  I’m all for that.

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One Response to “Those Whacky Raiders Are at it Again”

  1. Pete says:

    I always was happy to watch a CBS game, when Gannon was on. His analysis has always been more detailed. He actually shows the fans exactly how the plays developed and who did things right or wrong. Other ex-players like Fouts or Dierdorf, are just like most of the others. They all pick on the Raider players far more often than the other team and bash the whole team at half time (who watches half time any way, but still?). Usually the half time show with the game’s broadcast team is about going over the good and bad plays that changed the games momentum. That is what Gannon shows the fans, but others simply bash the organization as a whole and bring up the recent past, instead of going over the freaking game at hand. I actually feel like I’ve learned a little something (from Gannon) about the game plan, that I may have not been able to see, because of the tight live play-by-play camera shots.

    Gannon may have not been everyones buddy on the 02′ team, but who cares? A true leader gets things done. In Gannon’s case, grabbing the face masks of players and barking instructions at them was one way of communicating. I’m sure that attitude was carried into the locker room and team meetings. I’m not saying that is how it should be done, but hell …. it worked! In todays NFL, you have too many players that think that their shit smells like roses and if the coaches can’t let them know otherwise, then that is when the leaders with pads on have to step up and motivate and/or correct teammates.

    I know Al Davis does not want to win in the media wars, yet he does on the field, but we can not (as an organization) burn our bridges with guys like Gannon. Some day he’d make a great QB/OC coach or maybe even a HC. He is a honors student of the game and he, like other retired Raiders, watch from the outside … pissed off and all. Why? Because he, as well as others share the same feeling. We need to get our shit in order and together. Raiders-4-life is what they are. They share frustrating facts, like us fans do, because they CARE!

    I almost wish I could have Herrara’s job. My wife could do a better job than him. What connections to the team, does he have, besides working for the team for the last 10 years? Can’t Amy Trask replace his ass? You have to have a calm and witty personality to battle the mediots of the world. John just makes us look bad and the worst part is … it’s always in front of the bay area “haters club.”

    I agree about that fat ass Sapp. He should walk the plank! I don’t catch him on the three channels he gets paid by, very often, but I’ve read some nasty quotes and don’t understand why he gets all these jobs. Must be the Mike Irvin reason: over the top personalities. ie MORONS for the moron viewers. He sure does bring a side of stupidity to a show. Everyone has “that guy.” In espn’s case 90% are that guy.

    Speaking of percentages … I must end this blog comment with Tom Cable’s most recent press conference theme. That is the whole “90% speech.” Coach Cable said that 90% of the team is there. Totally where they need to be on game day. When asked if Russell was part of that small 10%, he hesitated at first, but admitted (of course after the 3 point game) that JaMarcus was part of that 10%. I just want to know how/why JR regressed this year. 5 out of last years last 7 games, he was making huge strides in the right direction. Now after a whole off season in camp, he is worse. WTF? After Pears got exposed at LG and our running game got slowed down (damn you Mike Nolan!) it is hard to see us have a fighting chance in weeks to come. Unless… McFadden and Bush have a break out game or three or eight and a west coast style looks to be the safest way for Russell or a backup to manage the clock. Bombs should not be thrown into triple coverage, ever again and getting to the other teams 30 on 4th down can be an advantage with Janakowski. So, Do it! Too many weapons are injured or have little experience and I’m burnt out with watching growing pains.

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