Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

September 24, 2008
The depleted defense

ALAMEDA -- Checking in for the first time today after some family business held me up today.

Just left the practice field where three defensive starters and a key reserver are not practicing today.

DE Derrick Burgess (triceps), DT Gerard Warren (chest), CB Nnamdi Asomugha (foot) and nickel CB Stanford Routt (ankle) are not practicing.

And considering how San Diego played on Monday night, the Raiders need all of their defenders healthy. Warren would appear least likely to play with a partially torn pectoral muscle.

Things aren't looking so good on offense, either.

RBs Darren McFadden (toe), Justin Fargas (groin) and RG Cooper Carlisle (ankle) are not practicing.

McFadden is likely to play against the Chargers. Fargas and Carlisle aren't looking as if they'll be ready.

John Wade was practicing at right guard in place of Carlisle.

LT Kwame Harris (knee) was back at practice for the first time since being hurt Sept. 8 against Denver.

Former Raider employee Mike Lombardi mentioned on his blog that Raiders coach Lane Kiffin agreed to an interview with the NFL Network, but had the interview canceled because owner Al Davis said it would be insubordination and grounds to fire him without pay.

That would mean Davis has no legal grounds to fire Kiffin without pay at this time. Davis can't stop Kiffin from speaking to local media as it is mandated by the NFL. But if Davis wants to silence his coach from talking to the NFL Network, there's only one solution:

Davis needs to talk.

He's the only one that can end all the speculation and explain the following:

1. Why is Kiffin still the head coach and does he really plan to fire Kiffin during the season?
2. What is his role in the defense?
3. Why didn't he fire Kiffin in January?

And there's plenty more to ask. Having John Herrera speak for him doesn't cut it. Davis is a Hall of Fame member and one of the most respected owners in the NFL.

His franchise is being mocked, largely because of his decisions.

It's time for Davis -- not Kiffin or Rob Ryan -- to answer some of these questions.

--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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