Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

October 22, 2007
Starting at QB ...

ALAMEDA – The offense has struggled and the quarterback Lane Kiffin trusted at the beginning of the season might be ready for a return to the field.

Thankfully for Josh McCown’s ears, the Raiders are on the road this weekend.

If Kiffin turns to McCown, it won’t be a popular choice. But I wonder if McCown, not Daunte Culpepper, had thrown the interception that ended the Raiders’ hopes of winning against the Kansas City Chiefs, would he have been booed off the field?

There were some boos on Sunday, but nothing like what McCown endured in his two home games as the starter.

The reality is regardless of whom starts at quarterback, there will be problems on offense.

The Raiders are only six games into the season. And with Kiffin trying to give Culpepper, McCown and Andrew Walter a fair chance to win the job, no one dominated the first-team snaps to get a firm grasp of the system.

Culpepper looked better on Sunday. McCown would look better over time, too.

The question is how would JaMarcus Russell look in the offense. Kiffin is not a believer in sitting Russell just because he’s a rookie. If neither veteran can spark the offense, don’t be surprised if Russell eventually gets a chance.

Sebastian Janikowski tied Chris Barr for most field goals in franchise history on Sunday with 162.

That was news to Janikowski today. He said a record is nice, but it would have been better to set the mark in win.

And you also might have noticed Janikowski leads the NFL with 16 touchbacks. The Raiders have struggled on kickoff coverage in recent years and allowed a return for a touchdown this year against Cleveland.

Janikowski said he’s been allowed to just kick the ball as far as he can under special teams coach Brian Schneider.

That’s a way to stop kick returns.

Janikowski attributes improved distance on his kicks to losing about 35 pounds, which improved his leg speed and approach on kicks.

Janikowski is down 242 pounds.

Too bad he didn’t get a chance to kick a game winner against the Chiefs.

He thinks he could have made it from at least 58 yards.

--Jason Jones

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About Raiders Blog and Q&A

Matt Kawahara was born in Sacramento and attended McClatchy High School and UC Berkeley, where he wrote for the independent student paper The Daily Californian. He graduated from Cal in 2010 and started at The Sacramento Bee as a summer intern. He joined The Bee's sports staff in fall 2011.

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