Walter the Raiders starter - for now

Walter the Raiders starter - for now

Andrew Walter will remain the Raiders starting quarterback for at least one more game, despite his second-half meltdown against San Francisco which left Walter with the lowest quarterback rating in the NFL.

Walter played most of the game against the 49ers and had his best half of the year when he directed Oakland to three scoring drives and a 13-7 lead. But the second-year quarterback did a 180-degree turn in the second half when he threw a pair of interceptions and had another pass attempt ruled a fumble that San Francisco recovered and returned for a touchdown.

Head coach Art Shell, who benched Walter in favor of third-string quarterback Marques Tuiasosopo with just over 10 minutes left in the fourth quarter, said Monday Walter would be back at quarterback for this week's game at Denver.

''Some guys take it pretty hard but when we pulled him out we told him, 'Look, it had nothing to do with you, it's just something that we have to do at this particular time. You'll be fine,'^'' Shell said. ''Look, the kid played a pretty good first half. He really did. And things just got away from us in the second half. He'll be fine.''

Walter had a quarterback rating of 118.2 in the first half when he was near flawless, completing 10 of 15 passes for 138 yards and a touchdown pass to Randy Moss. But in the second half Walter and the rest of Oakland's offense went into the tank. Walter was just 4-for-8 for 26 yards, had two interceptions and was charged with the fumble on the lateral to running back LaMont Jordan.

The two interceptions came on passes Walter would prefer to have back. He threw into double coverage in the end zone for Alvis Whitted when fullback Zack Crockett was wide open underneath; the second pick was a poor throw behind wide receiver Ronald Curry.

''He was doing pretty good in the game up until that particular point,'' Shell said. ''He went for it all and it hurt us, it hurt. We did have someone underneath but a young guy, he's going to make those kind of mistakes.''

The Raiders emerged from the game in relatively good shape healthwise, even though at 0-4 Oakland remains in serious pain.

Right guard Kevin Boothe broke his nose in two places and had to be taken to a local hospital for treatment after the game. Wide receiver John Madsen and tight end Randal Williams both have quadriceps injuries while tight end James Adkisson suffered a groin strain.

Defensive tackle Warren Sapp was unable to finish the game because of a knee injury but Shell said he is fine.

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