Inside Slant, Notes, Quotes, Report Cards

Inside Slant, Notes, Quotes, Report Cards

The Oakland Raiders apparently are reconsidering their decision to let Marques Tuiasosopo have an extended trial run as their starting quarterback.

Following a 26-10 loss to the New York Jets on Sunday in which Tuiasosopo had two interceptions and lost a pair of fumbles on blindside sacks by John Abraham, coach Norv Turner began to back off from earlier hints that Tuiasosopo was getting an extended look -- presumably for the rest of the season.

"We're going to go with him next week (against Cleveland)," Turner said. "That's our intention. And then we'll go from there."

During Monday's press briefing, Turner reviewed Tuiasosopo's performance without giving any indication there was a possible change to either Kerry Collins or rookie Andrew Walter.

About an hour after the press conference ended, a Raiders spokesman, saying he was talking on Turner's behalf, said "the quarterback position is being evaluated" and that there would be a decision made Wednesday as to who would start against Cleveland.

Following the Jets game, Collins did not speak at length to reporters, but he did agree with a reporter's statement that Oakland's problems couldn't be fixed simply by changing quarterbacks.

Walter, a third-round pick out of Arizona State, has been slowed by a groin injury off and on since training camp, Turner said.

Tuiasosopo said he was told last week the job was his for the remainder of the season, but has seen enough in four years to understand nothing is permanent.

"That's how it was presented to me, that it was the rest of the year," Tuiasosopo said. "But things change. As far as I'm concerned, that's what I understand it to be -- until someone comes and tells me different. Until then, I'll prepare like I prepared last week."

NOTES, QUOTES

--Punter Shane Lechler had his third consecutive poor game, averaging 38.7 yards on three punts, including a 24-yard punt to midfield that set the Jets up for a touchdown.

Lechler had not been outkicked by an opponent for 10 consecutive weeks, but he averaged 36.2 yards over those games.

Normally one of the more agreeable Raiders, Lechler has been absent from weekday media sessions of late, causing some to wonder if he is hurting physically and doesn't want to answer questions about it.

Coach Norv Turner said Lechler is fine. Lechler confirmed the problems are more psychological than physical.

"I am just in a bad rut right now," Lechler said. "I don't know what is wrong. Everything looks good on tape. If I knew what was wrong, I'd tell you and fix it."

--Defensive end Derrick Burgess had two more sacks and assumed the NFL lead with 13, a half-sack more than Tennessee's Kyle Vanden Bosch and the Giants' Osi Umenyiora.

Burgess, however, waved off reporters after the game.

--One week after last week's stunning, penalty-free game against San Diego, the Raiders reverted to their mistake-prone ways with 13 penalties for 88 yards against the Jets.

On pace for 155 penalties and 1,220 yards, the Raiders will have to step it up to match the records of 156 penalties for 1,304 yards set by the 1997 Kansas City Chiefs.

--The Raiders seemed baffled by the running of Jets quarterback Brooks Bollinger, who had 56 yards rushing -- breaking the 1979 franchise record of 53 yards set by Richard Todd.

"We said all week to be aware (of him running) if his first read was gone," linebacker Danny Clark said. "But we didn't respond too well. If this was Michael Vick, then you prepare all week, but we didn't even look at it like he was going to be a threat like that. He definitely hurt us."

Tackle Ed Jasper said the Raiders shouldn't have been surprised.

"He's a better runner than he is a thrower," Jasper said.

--It ranked well down the list of reasons why they lost the game, but the Raiders had a legitimate beef when it was ruled Jets wide receiver Justin McCareins had caught a 4-yard touchdown pass and was forced out by cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha.

Replays showed Asomugha's contact had been minimal, and that McCareins appeared to be headed well out of bounds whether he was touched or not. A forced-out call is not reviewable. The Raiders, grasping at straws, challenged on the basis of McCareins having possession.

Asomugha didn't realize until after the game it was a forced-out call.

"Is that what he said, that I forced the guy out?" Asomugha said. "I don't even know if I touched him. I knew he was out of bounds, so I wasn't even worried about it. There was no need to push him. I thought they'd call a flag if I touched him, so I just put a hand up to get in the way. That was it."

Asomugha said running back LaMont Jordan was wearing a T-shirt that summarized Oakland's feelings regarding the officials. It said "Bleep the refs."

Only it didn't say bleep.

STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL

PLAYER PERSONNEL NOTES

--G Jake Grove underwent an MRI for a bruised knee and is not expected to practice Wednesday, but he could be available by the end of the week. Grove started at left guard against the Jets, with Adam Treu starting at center. If Grove can't play, Brad Badger would start.

--LB Danny Clark, who led the Raiders with 14 tackles against the Jets, suffered a stinger but is expected to practice Wednesday and play Sunday.

REPORT CARD VS. JETS

PASSING OFFENSE: D-minus -- Only Marques Tuiasosopo's 20-yard touchdown pass to Jerry Porter keeps it from being a failing grade. Tuiasosopo suffered six sacks, had two interceptions and fumbled twice in his own territory on sacks. Randy Moss continues to be missing in action, with two receptions for 18 yards. Alvis Whitted dropped a potential TD pass when it appeared he was complaining to an official about defensive contact.

RUSHING OFFENSE: F -- The Raiders averaged 5.6 yards per carry, but only because Whitted ran 27 yards with a reverse. RB LaMont Jordan had 49 yards on 14 carries in a thoroughly disappointing homecoming. The Raiders showed no commitment to the run with 17 carries against the NFL's No. 29 ranked run defense. Whitted's reverse was the one bit of diversity. It's Jordan or nothing.

PASS DEFENSE: C-plus -- The Jets' lone touchdown, a 4-yard reception by Justin McCareins against Nnamdi Asomugha, was bogus -- a non-reviewable bad call on a force-out. Oakland got lucky when ex-Raider Doug Jolley dropped a sure touchdown pass from Brooks Bollinger in the end zone. The Jets took advantage of some soft coverage from rookie CB Fabian Washington.

RUSH DEFENSE: D-minus -- New York hammered away 43 times for 184 yards without starting RB Curtis Martin. The Jets have essentially announced to the world they've gone conservative, and Oakland couldn't stop them anyway, with New York piling up 12 rushing first downs and a 35:38 to 24:22 advantage in time of possession.

SPECIAL TEAMS: D -- Someone please return P Shane Lechler. He's been missing for three weeks now after averaging 38.7 yards per punt against the Jets. K Sebastian Janikowski missed the second sub-30-yard field-goal attempt of his career, going wide left from 29 yards. He managed to hit the goal post and bounce one in from 42 yards. The return game was nothing special.

COACHING: F -- Oakland played offensively as if Tuiasosopo were a clone of Kerry Collins, doing little or nothing to get him outside on the perimeter on run plays that could take advantage of his mobility -- and mobility was supposedly the reason he was starting. Either the Raiders couldn't or wouldn't commit to the run. Defensively, the Jets were an opponent that offered no mystery, but Oakland couldn't stop the most basic running plays. In all, the Raiders simply were not ready to play.

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