Raiders to make Quarterback change this Sunday


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Aug 30, 2005
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Turner considering benching QB Collins

Associated Press

ALAMEDA, Calif. -- Marques Tuiasosopo probably will get his shot as Oakland's starting quarterback this week.

Coach Norv Turner is leaning demoting the struggling Kerry Collins and plans to make his final decision before the Raiders take the practice field Wednesday to prepare for the lowly New York Jets -- though it sure seems Turner has all but made up his mind.

The coach already spoke to Collins about the potential change for Sunday's road game.

"I wouldn't have brought it up if it wasn't something we're considering strongly," Turner said Monday on the heels of the Raiders' second straight defeat and fourth loss in five games, 34-10 at San Diego.

"We're going to look at the quarterback situation and say, 'Hey, is it time to look at Tui?' With his mobility, would that help us?"

The 26-year-old Tuiasosopo has been a backup since the Raiders drafted him out of Washington in 2001. He started one game in 2003 in place of injured 2002 MVP Rich Gannon, but hurt his knee during Oakland's third offensive series on a hard hit by Boss Bailey in a 23-13 loss at Detroit and hasn't played in a regular-season game since.

This preseason, Tuiasosopo threw for 343 yards and completed 29 of his 44 passes with four interceptions and no touchdowns. He has been taking snaps with the first-team offense at times and is more athletic than Collins, allowing him to move more in the pocket.

The fans have been calling for him to get an opportunity for weeks now, chanting "Tui! Tui!" when the offense takes the field.

After a promising start to the season, the 32-year-old Collins has lately found himself facing constant questions -- just like his mistake-prone year last season -- about the Raiders' ineffective offense.

Collins has completed 245 of his 446 passes for 3,118 yards and 16 touchdowns, but he has thrown 10 interceptions and been sacked 32 times for 194 lost yards.

His recent struggles have been surprising after his strong start in his first full season as starter. Collins didn't throw an interception until his 141st pass in Week 5 against San Diego, then didn't give up another pick for 95 more attempts. Seven of his 10 interceptions have come in the past four games, including three in a 31-17 home loss to Denver on Nov. 13.

"It's been a variety of things," Collins said after Sunday's game. "Certainly, I take as much responsibility as anybody. It seems like it's been different things at different times, where the players get penalties or non-execution. Like I said, I'm not going to point fingers. I know that I didn't live up to the expectations I had for myself this season."

Turner isn't about to name a quarterback for the final four games, meaning Collins potentially could be benched this week and get another chance.

"Kerry wants to play," Turner said. "He's a competitor. He's a strong guy. He gives everything he's got. There's no question he wants to continue to play, and I appreciate that."
Even though the article say the Raiders are "considering" replacing Collins you know it's a done deal.

It's about time. This team has been in the toilet the entire season. Collins has lost all confidence and Turner knows his job is titus up no matter what.

Tuiasosopo deserves the chance to audition for the starting QB position in 2006. He has his shot. He has to make the best of the opportunity. Unfortunately he still has to run the tired vanilla schemes that coach Turner has been running out there every week. Hopefully Marques' mobility will be a factor and buy his some time behind this terrible offensive line.

I'm pulling for the guy. Unlike many Raider fans I believe Tuiasosopo can get the job done. Just like Gannon did for 4 years. Tuiasosopo is easily as smart as Gannon. He's a student of the game. Marques has a stronger arm than Gannon did and it is certainly strong enough to complete in the NFL. His legs are fresh and hopefully the team will rally around the young guy. Kerry Collins' stay in Oakland is probably over. So it's up to Tuiasosopo to show that he can lead this team next year. Failing that Andrew Walter may have a case for a couple of starts this year. Tui is in perfect position to shine having the New York Jets and Cleveland Browns as the next two teams on the docket.

Yep, IT'S TUI TIME --- I for one think it's overdue.

We'll see what happens on Sunday.
Well the team, particularly the offense, is clearly demoralized & listless. The change was neccesary from that standpoint alone. Not sure that it will equate to more wins, but hopefully the squad will have more motivation or 'fire' this Sunday......

Good luck Tui - I've always pulled for this guy.
I don't think Turner's offense is vanilla. I do think it was unrealistic though.

Here's what I mean:
  • With a suspect offensive line he puts in a route package that calls for cuts at 12-15 yards downfield.
  • Top those cut depths and the afforementioned line with an immobile QB.
  • Given the 1st three facts, that immobile QB has a long windup and needs to follow through to put any snap on the ball.
  • I'll give Collins the benefit of the doubt and let him have average decision-making skills, but with that long windup, he has to make his decision earlier than most QB's.
  • Now we go back to the line and their inconsistency in pass protection, if the QB thinks he's got 3 seconds and he only has 2.5 he'll be mid-windup when the defender is in his face, preventing the follow through, and making his pass flutter and float.
  • But let's say the line gives him protection when he wasn't expecting it, he rushes his decision anyway, throwing before the receiver makes the cut or breaks away. Now you have an errant pass (overthrow, interception, blown read, etc.).
But what is the coach to do? Sometimes the players make the offense work, and it looks pretty good when it works. I think that's what frustrates the fans most. The beauty of the system when it works. It really pressures a defense.

While the problem wasn't JUST Collins, he was certainly a big part of it. His limitations prevented this offense from working. A QB with the ability to throw on the run, escape the pressure, buy time before throwing, and throw a decent pass no matter what has the ability to succeed in this offense.

Drew Brees threw 2 TD's yesterday after escaping pressure. It's not like he wasn't forced to improvise, it was simply that he was able to. Collins cannot, so it's definitely TUI-TIME.

The starter has been benched, "LONG LIVE THE STARTER!"
It sure would be nice to see Tui and/or Walter show us enough in the last 4-games to allow us to address our O-Line & defense during the draft and Free Agency. Funny, I seem to recall saying the same thing in 2003 before Tui injured his knee in Detroit.

Rupert- Very apt breakdown as to why this offense is failing. Simply put, the gears just don't mesh.
I'll respectfully disagree Rupert.

This offense is about as vanilla as I've seen in a while. Basically our goal is to throw the ball deep. Sprinkle in a few runs until we get behind and then bombs away whether it has a chance of working or not. Did you see that one heave last night when Collins seemed to drop back 20 yards and just fling the ball, baby! Ridiculous. that pass was like a give up!

The rest of your post is very relevant but I don't think this offensive play book takes must time to read and understand. Damn shame. We suck.
Phil: I really don't think you're getting the whole picture, but then again, I'm not sure what you mean by vanilla.

There really is plenty going on in this offense, and I'm certain it's an average-sized playbook. It's by no means a WCO, it's not a Gruden/Callahan pre-snap shift-fest. It's not a formation-bending pre-snap headache for a defense, but when it comes to the plays being run, we're really not that much different than most NFL offenses. If by that you mean that most NFL offenses are vanilla, then you're right.

I would say we're as complex an offense as Indianapolis. They have about 3 running plays and their mirrors. They have the standard complement of route packages. They don't use many formations, and they typically don't run too many different plays in any given game. I would say Indianapolis is MORE vanilla than we are. But there's a reason they can be: they are effective in their plays and don't NEED more plays to fool the defense; if the primary receiver is covered, their QB can progress all the way down to the 5th option and someone WILL be open. The Raiders just don't have some of those luxuries that most teams should consider basic necessities. Indy also appears more varied because their QB hits more receivers when they're open. If they run the same play 5 times in a row, but hit diffreent receivers, they're still vanilla, it just doesn't look that way.

Know what I'm saying?
When I watch the games the offense appears way to vanilla (simple) imagination on offense whatsoever. No quick slants or anything out of the ordinary.

Maybe what you're saying is that the players aren't smart enough to understand and run different plays. The up patterns aren't working. We never run a WR screen or even middle screens to the RB's. It's as vanilla as it comes from my point of view. Totally without imagination. When the fans can sit in their living room and call the plays you know there isn't much to them. And think how the defense feels -- they're in seventh heaven only having to deal with parts of the field instead of wondering what might be coming next.

Porter said Collins was instructed to "just run the play" audibles - just run the play. That is pretty "vanilla" to me...if it's a player personnel problem then get those clowns out of the game and do something the defense isn't expecting for a change. I put that on the coaching.

I watched Cincinnati and Pittsburgh and was a mazed at the variety of passing plays and even unique running plays they were calling. Ditto the NY Giants and Dallas.

As always, just my opinion.
Well, I've seen screens and such in our offense, just more as spice than part of the main course.

Part of the problem (as I see it of course) with your perception is that a LOT of our plays don't work. I started breaking down some of our plays (thanks to Santa) and we have a variety of running plays, but they all wind up looking the same because of poor execution.

Really, when we pull the backside guard if there isn't a hole for him to get in to lead the play it looks just like an outside zone play where we didn't pull the guard from a results standpoint. The difference is, Jordan going outside as an adjustment or going outside by design. They both look the same, but they're not.

Also, do you see the difference when Jordan starts with a counter step as opposed to simply accelerating, and what about when he delays?

So, I accept that the Raiders don't have a dazzling array of plays, but they also lack the execution that would make the variety they do have more visible. I also agree that the play-calling is a little lack-lustre, but I think a LOT of that has to do with their execution. Because they don't execute, we have to pull plays off the board.

I'll tell you right now, Pittsburgh and Dallas do NOT have more plays than the Raiders. Dallas in particular probably brings fewer into a game than we do.

Execution is the key. When the QB is only seeing a few things, then you're only going to see those few things from him. If Tui starts Sunday, you'll probably get a different impression, because Tui will do different things than Collins. You'll probably ask, "Where were those plays before?" And I'll respond, "We were running them with Collins too."

I hope that makes my point a little more clear.
The change of QB won't make us win, but it will calm down the bitterness. It's good to ask now what happened with Kerry Collins? Not even his worst critics expected such a sad performance. I never liked him, just like Turdner, but the results and the display is terrible. This team is going nowhere right now, but with Tui things will be pretty much the same.

Anyway the change adds some spice and meakes interesting the next game.

I just wanna see Turdner go.
If Tui lays an egg, is Walter coming in or Collins is back?
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