From The Other Side, Part 3

To get the lowdown on the Dolphins' next opponent, the Oakland Raiders, we checked in with Michael Wagaman of Silver & Black Illustrated ( In Part 3, we get his take on the matchup.

Q: What's different, if anything, about the Raiders since Tom Cable took over for Lane Kiffin as head coach?

Michael Wagaman: Not much, really. The losing has continued, the offense has gone backward and the defense remains frustratingly mediocre. If their has been a change it's been in the attitude toward JaMarcus Russell. Whereas Kiffin was conservative with his play-calling in an effort to protect the young QB, Cable has chosen to take the reins off. He's had mixed results there, mostly disappointing.

Q: Can we explain the Raiders' consistent losing by putting it all on Al Davis, or is there more to it?

MW: Blaming Davis is an easy out. It's also correct. When you look at how much the roster has changed, how the coaching staff has repeatedly changed, and yet the results continue to be the same, the one constant has been Davis. Though he's nearing his 79th birthday, he remains as much involved with the day-to-day operations of the team as ever and so the credit -- and blame -- should fall in his lap.

Q: Should Dolphins fans have any reason to worry about the Raiders coming to Miami and leaving with a victory the way they did last season?

MW: Last year the Raiders caught a big break when Ronnie Brown got hurt. Remember, before then it was a shootout of the running games. Plus, that game was early in the season, too. Oakland is in too big of a hole this time around and has shown no signs of pulling out of its offensive slump. Miami has a nice roll going and the Dolphins seem headed for the playoffs while the Raiders appear destined for a third straight Top 5 draft pick.

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