OAKLAND --Cornerback Asante Samuel sat at his locker in disbelief.
"We're an inconsistent team right now," Samuel said. "This is the most disappointing (loss) ever. Ever, ever, ever."
Whether he was exaggerating or not is unknown, but the Eagles defense allowed only 13 points to the Raiders on Sunday. Yet, the Eagles were left searching for answers as those 13 points were enough in a 13-9 loss Sunday. The big play was an 86-yard touchdown pass from JaMarcus Russell to tight end Zach Miller in the first quarter for the game's only touchdown.
The Raiders were pinned at their own 14-yard line and the Eagles blitzed with linebacker Akeem Jordan and free safety Macho Harris. Russell got the ball down the right seam to Miller. Samuel had the chance to wrap up Miller, but couldn't. Miller was off to the races. Louis Murphy provided the last key block on Ellis Hobbs and Miller was in for the 86-yard score.
"I know I missed a tackle on the play," said Samuel when asked what happened.
"It was just one of those calls where he had time and he found one of those open holes and they got the ball to him," cornerback Sheldon Brown said. "Besides that big play, we were pretty much consistent at holding them."
Miller finished with 139 yards on six receptions. He was the obvious security blanket for Russell who was 17-of-28 for 224 yards with the one score and two interceptions.
The Raiders were also successful at hitting the edges in both the run and pass game. Russell completed five passes to fullback Gary Russell for 55 yards. The last of these was a screen in the flat which went for 13 yards on third-and-10 with 2:02 left. The Eagles were without timeouts and the Raiders ran out the clock.
On the ground, the Raiders got good push from their offensive line as Justin Fargas gained 87 yards on 23 carries. Some of his most successful runs came to the outside. Jordan said that the Raiders did a good job of getting them out of their gaps. But Brown still contends that the goal was to keep the Raiders under 17 points. Again, it wasn't enough on this day.
"I felt that we bent, but we didn't break. They got that big play," Brown said. "You can't give up big plays, but at the end of the day I'm still proud of the guys. That's why you play the games. Everybody's paper champions. That's why you play the games. Are you going to tell those guys that they didn't have a chance to win today?"
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 9:56 p.m., October 19