Raiders fixed a symptom, not the source

This is my Tuesday column on the firing of Dennis Allen. WARNING: This is a Raiders column. 49ers fans — feel free to skip this. ALAMEDA — Unfortunately, Dennis Allen was not the Raiders’ biggest problem. Yes, he is a bad head coach. And, yes, he deserved to get fired. But he didn’t deserve to get hired in the first place. Allen had been an NFL defensive coordinator for one…

September 30, 2014

Raiders flop at free agency

This is my Wednesday column. WARNING: This is a Raiders column. 49ers fans — feel free to skip this. You’ve got to wait on Raiders’ general manager Reggie McKenzie, give him a chance. Don’t judge him on his first two horrible seasons. Those weren’t his fault. He had to tear down Al Davis’ mess. You can’t judge McKenzie until Year 3. Fifteen minutes into Year 3, McKenzie flopped. McKenzie let…

March 12, 2014

Raiders will go as far as McFadden can carry them

Here is my Wednesday column on Darren McFadden. Darren McFadden is the most important player on the Raiders this season. If they have any shot to make the postseason, McFadden must carry them. That’s because the Raiders’ defense has at least eight new starters and the passing game has more holes than Swiss cheese. The Raiders have no wide receivers to scare opposing cornerbacks, and almost zero experience at tight…

July 24, 2013

Raiders and their QB competition

ALAMEDA – The Oakland Raiders traded a 2014 fifth-round pick and a 2015 conditional late-round pick to the Seattle Seahawks for 27-year old Matt Flynn on April 1. He is the Raiders’ placeholder at quarterback until Tyler Wilson, whom the Raiders drafted four weeks later in the fourth round of the NFL Draft, takes Flynn’s job. “Matt’s our starting quarterback as we go forward right now,” Raiders’ head coach Dennis…

May 29, 2013

49ers vs. Seahawks: Which team is better right now?

Many of my readers have been comparing and contrasting the 49ers and Seahawks this week, so I thought it would be interesting to break down the two clubs by offensive, defensive and special teams units. In other words, at this point in free agency which team has the better starting QB? Which team has the better backup QB? Which team has the better group of running backs? And so on….

March 19, 2013

Preview: How the Niners match up against the Seahawks

Yesterday we broke down how the Niners match up with the Green Bay Packers. Today, let’s check out how they match up with their main NFC West rivals – the Seattle Seahawks. 49ERS DEFENSE VS. SEAHAWKS OFFENSE: Seattle signed Aaron Rodgers’ backup and Mike McCarthy’s newest quarterback protégé, Matt Flynn. Although he’s only started two games in his NFL career, he’s performed marvelously in both of those games and many…

May 24, 2012

Report: 49ers, Alex Smith close to finally finalizing deal, but how close is close? Update: Close. They just agreed to terms.

According to Chris Mortensen, Alex Smith is “in the process of finalizing a deal” with the Niners. Mortensen reports the contract will average about $8 million per year. Now, all the Niners and Smith have to do is work out the contract language and agree on the guaranteed money. Piece of cake, right? Not so fast. The guaranteed money has been a major sticking point in the negotiations this whole…

March 20, 2012

Seahawks sign Flynn, Smith running out of options

Alex Smith will not be flying to Seattle this week, contrary to earlier reports. That’s because the Seahawks just signed free agent quarterback Matt Flynn to a three-year, $26 million contract ($10 million guaranteed), according to Adam Schefter. If the Niners sign Peyton Manning, Smith’s final option could be to sign with the desperate Dolphins. It feels like the world is closing in on Smith. Who knows, he could become…

March 18, 2012