Gutierrez's Instant Replay: Cowboys 3, Raiders 0


Gutierrez's Instant Replay: Cowboys 3, Raiders 0


It was an inauspicious debut for the Raiders' new era, as Oakland was shut out at home in the preseason for only the second time in franchise history. Yes, it's only an exhibition game, but you just know coach Dennis Allen and general manager Reggie McKenzie wanted to have a better showing. And really, if the starters played longer, the offense probably would have scored. It was moving the ball.

And the Raiders' first-team defense seemed to get the better of the Cowboys' first-team offense. Alas, it was not meant to be in a game decided mostly by guys who will not be on either teams' final 53-man roster.Run DMC alms this way: The last time we saw Darren McFadden on the field, he was limping off with a Lisfranc sprain to his right foot in Week 7 last season. He put to rest any questions about his health now, though, with the power and speed his displayed in his lone series. McFadden carried the ball twice, for 20 yards, and caught a pass for 18 yards. Getting him out of the game after one series was the smart move.About that new-look defense: The Raiders limited the Cowboys to four first downs and 81 net yards in the first half. The first-team defense got the better of the Cowboys' first-stringers. On consecutive plays, Lamarr Houston nearly had Tony Romo, only to have him slip out of his grasp, before Tommy Kelly wrapped up Romo for a 12-yard sack at the Dallas 6-yard line.Mitchell plays center field: Safety Mike Mitchell has been healthy all camp for the first time since his rookie season. And he's been just as intense. This week in practice, he had an interception and took it to the house as he zigged and zagged. Monday, he played center field and Kyle Orton's pass came right at him. No cutting back this time, Mitchell returned the pick 19 yards.How does Hot Rod suit you?: Rod Streater, the undrafted free agent rookie from that college football powerhouse Temple, was Matt Leinart's BFF. Streater was targeted seven times and caught six passes for 66 yards. He has seemingly jumped in front of fellow rookie and fifth-round compensatory draft pick Juron Criner on the receiving depth chart.Ford flops: Too harsh? Yeah, it's only a preseason game, but Jacoby Ford did not acquit himself in his first game sans Jason Campbell and Louis Murphy on the Raiders' roster. Ford was crushed on the opening kickoff, did not sell out at all on Carson Palmer's bomb into double-coverage and jogged back to cover the interception, then saw two Palmer passes slip through his hands. Meh, it was just an exhibition game, right? Right?Hooking and shanking: Sebastian Janikowski's 47-yard field goal attempt in the second quarter was blocked and Eddy Carmona, who hit the left upright four times in practice last week, hooked his 36-yarder wide right in the fourth quarter. Rookie Marquette King, meanwhile, had punts of 52, 34, 36, 60, and, gulp, 19 yards through three quarters.Terrelle Time?: It doesn't have the same ring as Tebow Time, does it? But Terrelle Pryor's scramble for nine yards and a first down in the fourth quarter woke the crowd up, especially with his jukes along the way. His accuracy is a constant work in progress. But finally, fans saw how raw he truly is, and in a game situation. He played the entire second half and finished with 50 yards through the air on eight of 15 passing and an interception, and 21 yards rushing on six attempts.

Here's to hoping Marshawn Lynch upstages the NFL Draft


Here's to hoping Marshawn Lynch upstages the NFL Draft

Marshawn Lynch is going to upstage the NFL Draft for a few moments by announcing his signing with the Oakland Raiders Thursday.

The problem with this is obvious. He can’t upstage it all day long.

The NFL Draft is one of those events that demeans all who come in contact with it, because it basically extols the three virtues the owners find most inspiring – dishonesty, bullying and treachery. Between everyone lying about everything they do, making players submit to the most revolting reputational indignities, and just good old-fashioned broken promises like, “If you’re there at 119, we’re taking you, oh wait, we suddenly hate you and your skill set,” the draft is largely a festival of misery.

Not universally, mind you. Some players love it, especially the ones who hit the lottery, get picked higher than they thought they would and go to the perfect team for their talents and temperaments. That’s not the usual road, but there you go.

But mostly, nah. And we’re not even getting into the cavalcade of media self-anointeds who think they know what they’re talking about but only serve to remind us that not everybody is a fun companion in a bar.

Now the disclaimer: If you like the NFL Draft, fine. Wallow in every minute of it with our blessing. It'll keep you from all level of other mischief, and it is relatively harmless fun if you can deal with the aesthetic unpleasantries to which we just referred. Just understand that you are spending 356 minutes of party prep for three days of partying and six days of cleanup. It's a hamster wheel of fun, but it is a hamster wheel.

But then there's Marshawn Lynch, who overcame being one of those draft casualties (because Buffalo didn’t work for him, and he didn’t work all that well for Buffalo, either), is coming out of retirement to be traded and then rendered a Raider in the time still allotted for them to reside in Oakland. As a distraction, this will play well enough. It sure beats DeMarcus Cousins being traded by Sacramento during the NBA All-Star Game.

I suppose this is a heart-rending tale of one man’s loyalty to his city (the right place at the right price), although there is the naggingly worrisome component that going back to football won’t be good for his overall health. It is the risk he runs, to be sure, and one can only assume that he has made a clearheaded choice, but this is not a spot that treats its recidivists well.

That’s recidivists, as in “folks who walked away happily, then found out they needed it too much for their own good.”

Frankly, there is no good reason not to want this to turn out well for Lynch (the Raiders can take of themselves with or without him, and within two years will do exactly that), but it is a case of bucking some daunting odds in what is too often a zero-sum game. That’s a level of risk that should make anyone queasy.

But it is what Marshawn Lynch wants, risks and all, and as a grown adult he should get the opportunity few are afforded – to chase and catch his dream until it stops being a dream and becomes a chore.

If it works out for the Raiders as well, fine. Lynch isn’t the one who will put them over the top in a conference dominated by three teams – New England, the Patriots and Bill Belichick – but if he finds the athletic closure he seeks, it ought to be good enough for the rest of us.

Especially if it even momentarily minimizes the rest of the hot rhetorical/gasbaggy mess that is Draft Night. If nothing else, here’s hoping Marshawn Lynch is the star of the night. That’s not the way to bet, of course, but a person can hope.

Source: Marshawn Lynch set to join Raiders, pending physical


Source: Marshawn Lynch set to join Raiders, pending physical

Running back is no longer a pressing Raiders need. They eliminated it just before this NFL draft by acquiring a good one for the team, a great one for the East Bay Raiders fan base.

Marshawn Lynch is going to wear Silver and Black.

The powerful running back and proud Oakland native has agreed to terms on a contract with the Raiders, a league source with knowledge of the situation confirmed on Wednesday morning.

The Raiders have also acquired his rights from Seattle in trade.

The deal and the trade is contingent on a physical. Lynch is expected at Raiders complex Wednesday to complete that formality and sign a contract to make everything official.

The news was first reported by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport and Mike Garafolo before dawn Wednesday morning.

NFL Network reports Lynch agreed to a two-year contract worth $8.5 million. He's set to make a $3 million base salary in 2017. He can earn another another $2 million coming if he reaches 1,000 yards. 

The Seahawks and Raiders will swap 2018 draft picks to complete the trade. According to USA Today, Seattle receives Oakland's fifth-round pick next year in exchange for Lynch and their sixth round pick next year.

The Oakland Tech High grad and Cal alum retired from NFL football after the 2015 season, but wanted to return after a year away from the game. The 31-year old only wanted to return for his hometown team, and got his wish after prolonged contract talks.

A union is now a completed physical away from becoming complete. 

Raiders players were overjoyed at the news before that, including quarterback Derek Carr.

Former Seahawks teammate Bruce Irvin, who has been championing the Lynch-to-Oakland cause for weeks now, was thrilled to see Lynch join the squad.

Lynch is not expected to be a Las Vegas Raider. His contract runs through the 2018 season. The Raiders plan to play in the Bay Area until their new Las Vegas stadium is complete in 2020. They have lease options to play at Oakland Colsieum through the 2018 season.