Free War Pigeon!

Free War Pigeon!
December 17, 2012, 6:45 pm
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ALAMEDA -- Of course, a million times of course, I type this with tongue planted firmly in cheek, er beak.

But, aside from the Raiders actually ending their six-game losing streak and beating Kansas City, 15-0, on Sunday, was there anything more entertaining than the re-appearance of War Pigeon during pregame warmups and during the first half?

"I'm surprised we didn't get a flag for 12 men (on the field)," cracked Raiders coach Dennis Allen on Monday.

Remember, it was more than three years ago when a pigeon showed up on the field during the Raiders' upset of Philadelphia on Oct. 18, 2009. The bird even "played" in kick coverage on special teams, staying in his/her/its lane on kickoffs.

Many Raiders that day said the pigeon harkened the spirit of deceased special teamer Marquis Cooper in a feel-good story from the beyond.

Sunday, a pigeon calmly strutted around the field during warmups and was almost stepped on by a dropping back Carson Palmer, before showing its quicks and getting out of harms way.

War Pigeon then made its way to the Chiefs sideline after the National Anthem -- behind enemy lines?!? -- before suddenly reappearing near midfield.

Late in the second half, the pigeon strutted around the Raiders huddle, when right guard MIke Brisiel tried to shoo it away…with his foot. Brisiel was met with lusty boos from the crowd.

"I was like, 'Oh geez,'" Brisiel said with a crooked smile, before pleading. "I was just trying to protect it. It's a war zone out there, could be dangerous.

"Something was wrong with that thing. He was a little off."

At halftime, with Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Free Bird" blaring about the O.co Coliseum, field personnel tracked the pigeon down and put it in a bucket and took it out of the stadium.

A Raiders official on Monday showed a picture to media members of the freed fowl outside of the Coliseum and, of course, a Twitter account purporting to be the pigeon has been created.

"We need the pigeon to come with us to Carolina next week," another anonymous Raiders official said, and we think said official was joking.

Then again, per Associated Press, pigeons can fly 600-700 miles per day. And with the Panthers' Bank of America Stadium some 2,765 miles from the O.co Coliseum (by highway and not as the crow, er, pigeon flies), War Pigeon could conceivably stick around for gameplan install on Tuesday night and the beginning of practice Wednesday morning before starting its trek east and be there before kickoff on Sunday.

Or not.