Who's Having the Worst Week in Football?
Whatever the records of their respective teams at this point in the season, most football fans can take solace in the fact that someone else is having a worse week than they are.
That is, unless you're a fan of one of the following teams.
In that case, you probably wish you could just run a sword through your skull and forget the recent trials of your team.
In reverse order, here are the four teams having the worst week in football after this past weekend.
4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Paging Raheem Morris and Mark Dominik: Signing return specialist Yamon Figurs is not going to have the immediate impact necessary to lift your team from an 0-5 slump.
The Bucs rank worse than 20th in every major category except for turnover differential; the defense ranks 28th in rushing yards allowed after cutting two of their starting linebackers from last year's team (Derrick Brooks and Cato June); and the offense is 26th in yards per game since they released last year's team leader in yards from scrimmage (Warrick Dunn).
And this is one of the teams chosen to play before 90,000 spectators in London in two weeks? Yikes.
Somewhere in the bowels of the ESPN studios, Jon Gruden is laughing to himself.
3) New Mexico Lobos
As the saying goes, [sewage] flows downhill, and the actions of Lobos coach Mike Locksley are definitely having a trickle-down effect on his team. Locksley, who is in his first year at New Mexico, has been suspended one game by the university for punching an assistant coach earlier in the season during a dispute.
His suspension comes on the heels of a previous investigation in which he was accused of age discrimination by a former administrative assistant. Those charges were consequently dropped, but not without smudging Locksley's public reputation.
Locksley's absence surely can't hurt the team, though: In a recent poll, the Lobos were ranked 114th out of the 120 Division I teams; they have yet to win a game this season.
2) St. Louis Rams
When you're forced to entrust a team's offense to Kyle Boller, you may as well run the Wildcat as your base offense. From where the Rams sit, the Raiders' offense looks formidable.
St. Louis is averaging just more than a touchdown per game this season, and despite a decent 4.3 yards/carry average from running back Steven Jackson (the only functioning component in the Rams' offense), they have yet to cross the goal line on the ground. Their ability to score points through the air when their No. 1 receiver is Donnie Avery defies comprehension.
Until the uncertainty surrounding the Rams' ownership is cleared up, it will be tough for them to bring in any help through free agency or trades. It didn't help that the Cardinals were recently knocked out of the baseball playoffs either—now there really isn't a distraction to keep fans from rioting.
The phrase "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em" does apply here: If the Rams fail to beat the Lions in Detroit on Nov. 1, there's a good chance they won't win a game this season, matching the Lions' futility from 2008.
1) Oakland Raiders
The good news is, the Raiders do have a win this season. The bad news is, that's the only good news coming out of Oakland these days.
The worst part is, defending his struggling quarterback and inept offense is not the hardest part of head coach Tom Cable's day. That would be keeping silent in the face of allegations that Cable assaulted a fellow coach during a meeting in training camp. (If you haven't already, read the article—it's bizarre.)
Cable's only comments: "Nothing happened....when the facts come out, everything will be fine." That's hardly a ringing self-defense for someone being accused of a felony.
Add that to the Raiders' growing pile of on-field issues, and it's not difficult to see the pressure cooker in which Oakland is forced to play from week to week. First-round pick Darrius Heyward-Bey has been noticeably absent in all five of the Raiders' box scores this season, and the bottom-of-the-barrel passing game shows it.
A slew of home games and a Nov. 1 matchup with the Chargers will keep the Silver & Black in-state until the middle of next month; if they can't get things straightened out by then, they won't even equal last year's total of five wins.
Have another team worthy of being on this list? Feel free to make your case.
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