I won't lie. It irritates me greatly to hear the media attempt to condense a 50-year Raider legacy of dominance into seven miserable years. America's neglect for history has been a pervasively destructive element, which has poisoned all levels of society. In that regard, I can relate to the Oakland Raiders.
However this isn't about me. It's about the 2010 Oakland Raiders. I often hear people mirror uneducated sports network rhetoric on how the Raiders may improve their win total from the previous year by about 1-2 victories.
I have to then ask myself, "Based on what?"
In three consecutive years (by three separate and respected players around the league), the Oakland Raiders have been identified as the most talented team in the league.
So if talent isn't the issue with recent Raider futility, then what is?
Every preseason, I look at the Raiders' roster in contrast to many other teams in the league, and I don't see 9-7. Honestly, I see 12-4 or better. Ask yourself, "Why not?"
This is a league that has seen teams go from 1-15 one season to Super Bowl contenders the next. But somehow, pessimists impose the idea of the Raiders making an eight-year Odyssey from the cellars of the NFL to mere mediocrity at 9-7.
We want dominance!
I mean, generally speaking, when the Raiders lose, it's mostly because they shoot themselves in the foot with untimely penalties, botched fake field goals, and just flat out poor overall preparation and strategy.
We in Raider Nation all knew that the damn donkeys were going to run that stupid rollout every other play, yet we couldn't stop it.
We all knew Phillip Shivers (I call him that because that's what I do every time I see his face) was going to throw it to Sproles out of the backfield, yet the Raiders still dropped back into a 30 deep zone. (There goes my remote control.)
So are the predictions of 9-7 by most Raider fans a consignment that the Raiders will continue to be their own worst enemies? Or is it that Raiders schedule, so daunting with the likes of the Chiefs (twice), the NFC West, and the Texans?
The Raiders, and the Nation, need a killer instinct. I remember how, in the days of Gannon, teams would be trembling at the sight of the Oakland Raiders on their schedule. The Raiders' pressure was relentless and they went for the jugular. Recent Raiders coaches have been too conservative, predictable, and slow.
I've often wished for the Raiders to switch to a no-huddle offense to pick up the pace. The longer it takes at the line of scrimmage is more time for Robert Gallery to get another false start. Hopefully, we can speed things up and Cable can do whatever he does to the best of his ability.
My prediction: 16-0.