Between 1990 and 2004, 74 teams started the season 0-3. Three of them
reached the playoffs, none since 1998 when Buffalo did it. But the Bills
won seven of their next eight games.
As tough as the schedule has been -- both Super Bowl qualifiers from
a year ago in the first three weeks -- Oakland looks like a team that
may have improved from last year's 5-11, but shows no more skill at
learning how to win.
For now the fight will be to avoid losing confidence.
"The biggest thing for our team is to keep competing and fighting the
way we have," coach Norv Turner said. "We've played three outstanding
football teams. We're going to look at this and get better. What we need
to do, obviously, is to win a football game."
One. So far that's been too much to ask.
The Raiders failed to put the Eagles away in the first half when
Philadelphia was struggling on offense and ultimately paid the price in
a 23-20 loss. Oakland surrendered 299 yards of offense in the second
half, lost a 10-6 lead by giving up a pair of touchdowns, then tied the
game at 20 with 2:17 to play on a Kerry Collins-to-Doug Gabriel
touchdown pass covering 27 yards.
"We showed a lot of character today," Collins said.
The Raiders also showed a continuing inability to hold teams on
defense. The Eagles used the final 137 seconds to move from their 20 to
a David Akers field goal from 23 yards with nine seconds remaining.
Along the way, the Raiders yielded 208 yards of total offense to
Eagles running back Brian Westbrook, saw Sebastian Janikowski miss two
field goals, were penalized 13 times for 94 yards, gained 21 yards on
the ground on 22 attempts and allowed 448 yards of offense to the
--DT Warren Sapp intercepted the fourth pass of his 11-year career
and nearly had another Sunday against Philadelphia.
--CB Charles Woodson spent most of Sunday's game defending Eagles WR
Terrell Owens, who caught nine passes for 80 yards and a 4-yard
touchdown on which he was covered by Renaldo Hill. Woodson was knocked
woozy late in the game but returned and finished.
--WR Doug Gabriel, in his first action since mid-August, caught a
27-yard touchdown pass against Philadelphia. In the last game he had
played, he had two touchdown receptions in an exhibition game at
--QB Kerry Collins has now played three games without yielding an
--RB LaMont Jordan had a 14-yard run against Philadelphia, but aside
from that, he carried 15 times for a mere 5 yards.