The Chiefs may have lost to the Raiders two weeks ago, but Oakland has been dealing with nothing but off-the-field issues since. First they had to deal with the news about assistant coach Randy Hanson telling police that head coach Tom Cable broke his jaw. Then yesterday, Jeff Garcia took to the airwaves to attack both JaMarcus Russel and the Raiders.
“I have no problem going into a situation and helping a young guy out and really trying to help the team out overall more so than anything,” Garcia said, referring to Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell. “I just feel like it’s an unfortunate situation when the entire work ethic and the entire goal of the team is really put upon one guy’s shoulder.”
Garcia said despite Russell’s talent, he “really isn’t maybe ready for that situation or ready to take on that sort of responsibility.”
“When you put him on the field in a one-on-one workout session he’ll make every throw for you, but when it comes down to making things happen in the heat of the battle and rallying the troops around you and making a case for the team, that’s where maybe things aren’t where they need to be.”
With Russell slumping — he has an NFL-worst 39.8 pass rating — Garcia could’ve been an option for the Raiders to re-sign. But his comments seemed to indicate he wasn’t interested in that scenario — in which case the Raiders likely would have to turn to Bruce Gradkowski, who sits at No. 2 on the Raiders’ depth chart with Charlie Frye the third-stringer. But Garcia said the scope of the Raiders’ problems spans beyond the quarterback position.
“It was to a point where I felt like guys who walked through those doors that just were there to collect a check and not really interested in putting everything that they had within themselves on to the football field. And that was the frustrating thing for me to see.”
“There were a lot of good young guys in that locker room who really want to do whatever it takes to win, but unfortunately it’s not everybody,” Garcia added. “In order to compete at this level in this game, everybody needs to be on board.”
The last line from Garcia is the one that I hope every Chiefs fan takes note of. Everybody needs to be on board and what Scott Pioli and Todd Haley have been doing since they got to Kansas City is weeding out the players that they know are not compatible with their program.
Whenever I hear from disgruntled Chiefs fans I tell them on thing: “At least you’re not a Raiders fan!” No matter how bad things have been around Kansas City the past few seasons I always knew it would never get as bad as Oakland.
You might not agree with Todd Haley firing offensive coordinator Chan Gailey, but at least he didn’t break his jaw with a sucker punch.
Seriously, with the Raiders it’s something different every couple of days. And even when they are on their best behavior, there crazy owner is always lurking in the background ready to deliver… well, something crazy.