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Raiders overcome a night of penalties for win over Chargers

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Oakland – Philip Rivers was frustrated by the Raiders defense all night.  He threw three interceptions and his last came with twenty-five seconds left on the clock.  Rivers went deep to Keenan Allen but his pass was intercepted by Karl Joseph to secure Oakland’s win.

The Raiders 26-24 victory over the San Diego Chargers didn’t come easy.  The team recorded 12 penalties, the most in a game this season.  A curse from the past, almost cost Oakland the game but Rivers attempt for a late touchdown was thwarted by the Raiders defense.

“To me, anytime you play a great quarterback like Philip Rivers or [Matt] Stafford or any of these guys if you let them stand back there, you’re in trouble,” Jon Gruden said.  “I thought we had a good rush, great energy tonight.  We were shorthanded.  We didn’t have [Nicholas] Morrow.  Arden Key broke his foot.  We only had seven defensive linemen.  I credit [defensive coordinator Paul] Guenther.  He did a hell of a job with the scheme.  Really good work.”

The Chargers got back into the game in the second half.  Michael Badgley kicked a 27-yard field goal and cut the lead to 3 points.  By the fourth, Rivers pass to Austin Ekeler for a 6-yard touchdown made it a 24-20 game.  Derek Carr moved his offense downfield with ease before Josh Jacobs rushed up the middle for a 18-yard touchdown giving Oakland a 26-24 lead.  

Jacobs touchdown was the longest carry for the Raiders tonight.  Jacobs continues to lead all rookie rushers in carries (168), rushing yards (811) and rushing touchdowns 

(seven).  Despite a strong comeback for San Diego, Oakland’s defense forced Rivers to turn the ball over twice in the first quarter.  On opening drive, Rivers was sacked for an 8 yard loss, then he threw an interception intended for Allen, that was intercepted by Erick Harris.

Harris rushed it back for 59 yards but due to a pass interference by Trayvon Martin, that play  was called back.  Daniel Carlson kicked a 40-yard field goal for a quick 3-0 lead.  On San Diego’s next series, Rivers pass intended for Hunter Henry was intercepted by Harris again and this time he ran it back for a 56-yard touchdown extending the Raiders lead 10-0.  

“Yes, it was pretty exciting and a special moment for this team, a special moment for my teammates,” said Harris.  “It’s a credit to them for putting me in a position and just trusting those guys.”

Harris recorded his second INT in two drives and returned it 56 yards for a TD, marking the first time a Raiders player has returned two INTs for a TD in a single season since 2007 (Thomas Howard).  Harris is the first Raiders player with two INTs, including one for a TD in a game since Phillip Buchanan (11/16/2003 vs Minnesota).

To start the second quarter, Carr and his offense were unable to move the ball on fourth down. The Chargers took over on their own 40 yard line.  On third and goal, Rivers found a wide open Henry for a 2-yard touchdown making it a 10-7 game.  Rivers looked like he found his rhythm and went with his passing game.

Again on first and goal, Rivers pass was intercepted for a third time by Harris but there was a flag on the play due to offsides by Maxx Crosby.  Gordon rushed up the middle for a 3-yard touchdown and put the Chargers ahead 14-10. 

At the two-minute warning, Carr found himself on fourth down, inches away from a first down.  The Raiders went for it, Alec Ingold rushed for 3 yards and that was enough to move the chains.  Carr connected with Ingold for a 9-yard touchdown making it a 17-14 game to end the half.  

The rookie class continues to lead the NFL in total touchdowns (13), seven more than the next-closest team.  Last time any team had more than 13 TDs from rookies over first the first nine games was in 2016 when the Dallas Cowboys had 14.  Oakland leads the NFL with 102 points on drives of at least 10 plays and rank third in passing completion percentage (70.8).

“We’re focused,” Darren Waller said.  “We don’t, like I said we don’t get too high or too low off wins. We beat Detroit, but we knew like that’s not going to do anything for us.  But Thursday night, people prepare, people are invested, and they’re just excited to get out there and play football so quick again.  We just got a bunch of guys that love football and love to prepare like that. It makes for a winning formula.”

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Bay Area

IN MEMORIAM: John Madden, Oakland Raiders Super Bowl Winning Coach, Dies at 85

“We all know him as the Hall of Fame coach of the Oakland Raiders and broadcaster who worked for every major network, but more than anything, he was a devoted husband, father and grandfather,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said.

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John Madden.
John Madden.

By Bay City News

John Madden, who won a Super Bowl with the Oakland Raiders and went on to be a television commentator and namesake of a popular football video game series, has died at the age of 85, the National Football League announced on Dec. 28, 2021.

No other information about a cause of death was immediately released.

Madden, who grew up in Daly City, led the Oakland Raiders to a Super Bowl victory in 1977, then went on to highly successful careers in TV and video games, and was recently the subject of a documentary titled “All Madden.”

“We all know him as the Hall of Fame coach of the Oakland Raiders and broadcaster who worked for every major network, but more than anything, he was a devoted husband, father and grandfather,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said.

Madden’s death prompted widespread reactions on social media from those who knew or admired him.

The Raiders, who have since moved to Las Vegas, wrote “A brilliant coach. A loyal and trusted friend. A Raider.”

Gov. Gavin Newsom wrote, “Tonight we mourn John Madden — he redefined the role of a sports broadcaster — his voice as recognizable as anyone who ever did the job. He hoisted a Super Bowl trophy with CA’s own Oakland Raiders. Our thoughts are with his family as we mourn this incredible man.”

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf wrote, “I join all in mourning + honoring SuperBowl-winning coach John Madden. He was a great personality who truly loved #Oakland. When his grandson played at O’Dowd, John was as enthusiastic about the Dragons as any NFL team. We will miss him!”

San Mateo County Board of Supervisors president David Canepa wrote, “RIP John Madden. A 1954 graduate of Jefferson High School in Daly City and Super Bowl winning coach for the Oakland Raiders. He did so much for Daly City!”

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Featured

City Seeks to Work With A’s, Major League Baseball To Keep Team in Oakland

City Council leaders said it’s incorrect “that the City Council is delaying or refusing to consider the A’s project proposal,” at Howard Terminal.

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Leaders of the Oakland City Council told the head of Major League Baseball in a May 14 letter that they are willing to work with the As baseball team to keep it from moving out of the city.

    Oakland recently lost both its National Football League franchise the Oakland Raiders to Las Vegas and the Golden State Warriors to San Francisco.

    The letter comes just days after MLB told the Oakland As to look for another city to play while pursuing a waterfront park in Oakland.  

    “The Oakland City Council is committed to negotiating in good  faith for a strong future for the A’s in Oakland, and we invite the As and MLB to do the same by agreeing not to seek relocation while the As complete the (stadium at the Charles P. Howard Terminal) project  process, the letter begins.

    But officials in Las Vegas revealed on May 12 on Twitter through Mayor Carolyn Goodman that they have been talking with the As since 2019 and they are excited.

    City Council leaders said it’s incorrect that the City Council is delaying or refusing to consider the A’s project proposal, at Howard Terminal.

    Rather, many, such as city staff have been working to bring the proposal to the council for potential approval.

   But the As have been working on the project for nearly five years, As president Dave Kaval said in February. Opposition, too, has mounted against the Howard Terminal site and in favor of a new stadium at the current Oakland Coliseum site.

    The City Council’s letter says that MLB has concluded without sufficient support that the Coliseum site is not viable.City Council leaders asked in the letter for the materials MLB reviewed to draw that conclusion.

    The councils letter is signed by council President Nikki Fortunato Bas, Vice Mayor and Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan and Councilmember Carroll Fife, who represents downtown and West Oakland.

    The Howard Terminal site is near both downtown and West Oakland.

    City Council leaders are willing to meet with MLB officials and the As ownership, the letter says, to thoughtfully move forward.

    Council leaders said the As leadership recently changed their requests.

    “Rather than send forward full completed deal terms for consideration, the As demanded that the council vote on summary deal terms.  

    “Council leadership expressed willingness to explore this request, and met with the As staff and other stakeholders to seek how best to move forward, according to the letter.  

    Council leaders were in the process of scheduling a vote on the summary deal terms before their summer recess when MLB told the As to seek a new home while it pursues a waterfront ballpark in Oakland.

    “This relocation announcement came without giving the council an opportunity to receive and vote on a proposal and did not even wait for the time requested for the vote, the letter says.

    “Since the request was for a vote by August, why would you announce permission to explore relocation, prior to the date of the requested vote, if the request had been a sincere one? the letter said.

    Council leaders asked MLB to confirm its intentions.

    “Can you confirm definitively, that if the council were to take such a vote for a term sheet regarding the As, that you would prohibit any action to seek or pursue relocation during those next steps?

    Kaplans staff confirmed late on the afternoon of May 14 that a vote on the summary deal terms will be scheduled for before the August recess.

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Bay Area

City Reacts as A’s Threaten to Leave

The A’s said on Tuesday said they will start looking into relocating with the backing of Major League Baseball.

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Mount Davis Oakland with Fans/Wikimedia

The Oakland Athletics made a public threat this week to leave Oakland if  the City Council does not accept their latest proposal by the end of June to build a baseball stadium and huge real estate complex at the Howard Terminal at the Port of Oakland.

The A’s said on Tuesday said they will start looking into relocating with the backing of Major League Baseball.

 A’s owner John Fisher said in a statement,  “The future success of the A’s depends on a new ballpark. Oakland is a great baseball town, and we will continue to pursue our waterfront ballpark project. We will also follow MLB’s direction to explore other markets.”

 A’s President Dave Kaval told the Associated Press on Tuesday, “I think it’s something that is kind of a once-a-generational opportunity to reimagine the waterfront. We’re going to continue to pursue that, and we’re still hopeful that that could get approved, but we have to be realistic about where we are with the timelines.”

Many residents are angry at the A’s aggressive stance, especially since the team’s new proposal is vague on details and puts the city and its residents on the hook for nearly one billion dollars in infrastructure improvements plus over $400 million in community benefits the A’s have pledged but instead would be handed off to taxpayers. 

Reflecting the reaction of some residents, Tim Kawakami, editor-in-chief of the SF Bay Area edition of The Athletic,  tweeted, “I just don’t see the municipal validation in kowtowing to a billionaire who won’t spend much of his own money to build a new stadium that will make him many more billions.”

Mayor Libby Schaaf says she is open to the A’s proposal, and Council members  want more details on its financial impact  on the city and its taxpayers, 

Councilmember Loren Taylor told the Oakland Post in an interview: “We know they are looking for alternative locations. It is something that has to be factored in. Our commitment is to  work to keep the A’s in Oakland but to do it in way that protects the interests of the city  and is  the best deal for the people of Oakland.”

Said Councilmember Treva Reid:

“My commitment will always be to the residents of East Oakland and ensuring strong community benefits and economic development.  I appreciate the contribution of the Athletics … However, the Council must have an adequate amount of time to thoroughly evaluate their proposed offer to ensure Oakland residents receive a fair, transparent  and equitable deal.” 

In her statement, Mayor Schaaf, who has long been a backer of the A’s real estate development near Jack London Square,  said, “We share MLB’s sense of urgency and their continued preference for Oakland. Today’s statement makes clear that the only viable path to keeping the A’s rooted in Oakland is a ballpark on the waterfront.

“Now, with the recent start of financial discussions with the A’s, we call on our entire community — regional and local partners included — to rally together and support a new, financially viable, fiscally responsible, world class waterfront neighborhood that enhances our city and region and keeps the A’s in Oakland where they belong.”

Major media outlets,  often  boosters  of super- expensive urban developments, are unenthusiastic about the A’s proposal and the team’s pressure on the city to go along with its demands.  

In an article, the San Francisco Chronicle’s Scott Ostler wrote, “Get the message, Oakland? Vote to approve the A’s plan and commit to kicking in $855 million for infrastructure for the A’s new ballpark and surrounding village around Howard Terminal or kiss your lovable little baseball team goodbye.

“It’s called power politics, folks.”

In an editorial, the Mercury News and the East Bay Times wrote,” The team has thrown down a greedy and opaque demand that the city of Oakland approve a $12 billion residential and commercial waterfront development project that happens to include a new ballpark — and requires a massive taxpayer subsidy.

“If that’s the best the A’s can offer, the city should let them go.”

Ray Bobbitt of the African American Sports and Entertainment Group told the Oakland Post, “These are bully tactics. You either give me the money or I’m leaving. I don’t think that’s the way to work with the community.

“Do it in a way that’s respectful of the people. If you want to play hardball, I don’t think it’s a tactic that works these days.”

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