Raiders keep first road win in perspective


Raiders keep first road win in perspective

KANSAS CITY -- Sure, the Raiders' locker room had a certain bounce to it after Oakland's 26-16 defeat of the Kansas City Chiefs, but it's not as if the guys were not bouncing off the walls.Not even with the Raiders claiming their first road victory of the season and winning consecutive games for the first time under Dennis Allen to improve to 3-4 on the year.Not with so much perspective being preached by the Raiders' new regime, and the trade deadline fast approaching on Tuesday."This one's only important if we're able to go out and win the next one," insisted rookie head coach Dennis Allen."This victory's not going to mean nothing if we go home and lose to Tampa," offered defensive tackle Tommy Kelly.And there's more than a kernel of truth to it all. There's a handful of positives for the Raiders to glean from their sixth straight win in Kansas City, as well as negatives to massage.First and foremost, the Raiders won the battle in the trenches, on both sides of the ball. Defensively, the Raiders had three sacks, one each by defensive tackle Richard Seymour, linebacker Rolando McClain and linebacker Philip Wheeler, who also had an unofficial total of 11 tackles, and two interceptions, by safety Matt Giordano and cornerback Pat Lee. It was the first pick of Lee's five-year career.The defense chased quarterback Brady Quinn out of the game on his first-quarter interception, knocked around Matt Cassel, limited game-breaking running back Jamaal Charles--who entered the day averaging 5.1 yards per carry--to four yards on five carries and receiver Dwayne Bowe to three catches for 65 yards, with 46 of those yards coming on one play."What you want to do is eliminate the team's big plays and execute your plays," Wheeler said. "You just want to play fast and physical. That's what we did."Offensively, Palmer threw for 209 yards on 14-of-28 passing attempts with two TDs and an interception, equating to an 83.8 passer rating to extend his franchise record of passing for at least 200 yards to 13 straight games.A week after taking a beating in the overtime defeat of Jacksonville, Palmer was not sacked by the Chiefs."I had all the time in the world to throw," Palmer said, crediting his offensive line."I don't think my jersey needs to be washed."Denarius Moore had a touchdown catch for the third straight game, last accomplished by a Raiders pass catcher in 2010, guy by the name of Zach Miller.And even Darren McFadden got into the act with 114 yards rushing on 29 carries, with 73 of those yards coming in the fourth quarter, when the running game was needed most to hold onto the lead.Placekicker Sebastian Janikowski converted four field goals to up his career conversion rate at Arrowhead Stadium to 32-of-36 made.But perhaps most encouraging on this day -- the Raiders were flagged a season-low two times, for 20 yards."It's something that you fight every week and you battle every week," Allen said. "Our guys understand that we can't have the dumb penalties that cost our team. We were better in that this week and we've got to improve in that area."Another area, or two, in need of improvement -- third-down efficiency (Oakland was just two of 12) and red-zone efficiency (one of six).Three times they had a first-and-10 inside the Chiefs' 25-yard line and had to settle for field goals."It's frustrating," Palmer said."We had opportunities to score and we didn't capitalize on it, so we're going to go back and continue to work and find ways to get better than 65 percent in the red zone. That's our goal."Here's one last goal heading into the next game -- take a deep breath. Again.The Raiders' last two opponents -- the Jaguars and Chiefs -- were each coming off bye weeks. Oakland's next opponent, Tampa Bay, will be coming on off a 10-day layoff having played Thursday night.

Raiders' Sean Smith charged with assault

Raiders' Sean Smith charged with assault

Raiders cornerback Sean Smith has been charged with assault, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced on Thursday.

The charge is for assault of his sister's boyfriend in Smith's hometown of Pasadena. Smith allegedly beat and stomped the boyfriend's head on the morning of July 4, 2017 in Old Town Pasadena, the district attorney said.

Smith faces formal felony counts of assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury and battery with serious bodily injury to the victim.

The 30-year old plans to fight the charges levied against him. 

"Sean maintains his innocence at this time," Smith's attorney, Daniel Rosenberg told NBC Sports Califorinia on Thursday evening. "We are going to be entering a plea of not guilty and fighting these charges."

A warrant was filed on Aug. 16. Smith's arriagnment is scheduled for Sept. 29. 

Smith was not present at Thursday's Raiders practice, the last session of training camp. He surrendered to Los Angeles County authorities, posted an $80,000 bond and has been released from custody.

If convicted as charged, Smith could face a maximum sentence of seven years in California prison. 

A Raiders spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The case is still under investigation by the Pasadena Police Department. 

This is another blow in a rough summer for Smith. He has struggled on the practice field during training camp and faces an off-field legal issue. Smith is guaranteed $9.5 million for the 2017 season. 

More to come...

After speaking with Marshawn Lynch, two things are crystal clear

After speaking with Marshawn Lynch, two things are crystal clear

NAPA – Marshawn Lynch spoke with the media Thursday for the second time as a Raider. He was quick-witted, disarming and, as always, not suitable for work.

It was five minutes of peak Marshawn, where he brought light to his charitable endeavors, called himself the “daddy” of his position group and cleverly sidestepped all things nation anthem.

He was asked four questions on other topics before elephant in the room was mentioned. It didn’t stick around long.

“I think the elephant left the room because a little mouse ran in here,” Lynch deadpanned. “Didn’t they say elephants are scared of mice or something? That [expletive] left the room, cousin.”

[RATTO: Lynch reminds media how much control he exerts over any interaction]

Two more related questions came down the pike. The first was about Del Rio letting players be themselves. He answered a different question instead.

“Yeah, because on ‘doctor-24,’ it’s a designed way that you’re supposed to run it but I have all freedom to go any way that I choose to run it,” Lynch said. “I would say, yes.”

The final anthem-esque query was deflected in a similar fashion.

“When we run ‘74’ or something like that, where I have to scan and read on both sides, that is pretty difficult. For the most part, I’m a veteran so I can make it work.”

Two things were crystal clear after speaking with Lynch.

He didn’t miss football one bit during his year in retirement. Lynch said this spring he decided to return after the Raiders were approved to relocate away from his native Oakland. He wants to represent his hometown well and give them something to cheer before the team leaves for Las Vegas.

That’s why he’s fired up even for Saturday’s exhibition against the Rams – he’s expected to make a cameo in that game – his first in Oakland wearing silver and black.

“It’s truly a blessing and just to have the opportunity to go and do that is a good [expletive] feeling,” Lynch said. “It’s a good [expletive] feeling.”

Lynch has always been active in the community, and hopes him playing here will bring more visibility to what’s being done to help kids in Oakland.

“I plan on continuing to do what I do in the community,” Lynch said. “It’ll probably be that now that I’m here, more people that are in the community might actually come out and support what it is that we’ve got going on.”