As I sat in the press conference room waiting for Raiders coach Dennis Allen to address the media and explain the embarrassing effort from his team on Sunday in Baltimore, it suddenly dawned on me.
The Oakland defensive players – at least according to the logo I was seeing in front of me – are playing with a patch over their right eye.
No wonder they stink.
Honestly, it looked at times on Sunday like Oakland had a patch over BOTH eyes.
The Ravens won 55-20 on Sunday, but the story of the day was how putrid Oakland was from start to finish.
And the next time John Harbaugh’s team drops a tough one, or the next time they “only” beat a bad Cleveland team by 10 points on the road, I want you people to remember what you saw at M&T Bank Stadium on Sunday.
I want you to remember what the Raiders looked like.
Because you would NEVER, EVER, EVER see a Ravens team throw in the towel like that.
Even when they got b-slapped in Houston a few weeks ago, Baltimore never once gave the appearance of throwing in the towel. They got smashed by the Texans, yes, but they left with their dignity.
Oakland left the Baltimore stadium dressed in gowns.
So the next time the Ravens lose, or struggle to win, keep what you saw from the Raiders firmly planted in the back of your mind. There’s losing. And then there’s getting your asses hammered because you just don’t have the guts to fight.
Gutless was the word to describe Oakland’s performance on Sunday.
And straight from the file of “the other team tries too”, it’s important to point out that the Ravens executed well in all three phases of the game on Sunday. Joe Flacco was superb, his wide receivers nearly as good, and the Oakland defense simply wilted under a Baltimore attack that was dangerous both in the air and on the ground. The tell-all of the game came late in the 2nd quarter when Darrius Heyward-Bey flicked away an attempted tackle by Ed Reed and scampered into the end zone to complete a 55-yard scoring play with 1:37 remaining to close the gap to 20-10. Had the game gone like that to the locker room, who knows what might have happened in the final 30 minutes. But Baltimore buzzed down the field with ease, upping their halftime lead to 27-10 when Ray Rice went in untouched from 7 yards out. Sometimes people write “untouched” as a way of saying the player was hardly harrassed as he went by. In this case, from 7 yards away, Rice absolutely waltzed in without a Raider defender putting a finger on him. Credit Marshal Yanda with a great block…and LOL at the Oakland defense, who folded like a cheap suit right before the teams headed to the locker room.
The second half was full of fun and frolic…if you’re a Ravens fan.
Baltimore took all of 1:18 to score in the 3rd quarter, then later took advantage of a napping Raiders special teams unit to send holder Sam Koch into the end zone on a fake field goal from seven yards out. It got better. Jacoby Jones busted a kick-off return for a 105 yard score early in the 4th quarter to finalize the numbers at 55-20.
The Ravens did a lot of things right on Sunday.
But a shameful performance by the Raiders was the real story of the day, as they did something you’ve never seen a John Harbaugh-led team do.
The Raiders threw in the towel.
Somewhere, I imagine former Oakland owner Al Davis was heard screaming, “JUST TRY, BABY!”