More observations from Saturday

The Oakland Raiders 33-30 win over the San Francisco 49ers was like most preseason openers -- some good things and not-so-good things.

Fortunately for the Oakland Raiders, who host the Dallas Cowboys Saturday night, the good outweighed the bad. Granted, preseason games do not count on the record but when a team is coming off an appalling 4-12 season, you've got to start somewhere. Here's a closer look:

-- Rich Gannon and Kerry Collins insist there is no quarterback controversy. Gannon looked more like his old self but it's hard to ignore the fact that Collins led the Raiders into the end zone. Gannon, Collins and Marques Tuiasosopo all did a great job spreading the ball to different receivers.

-- Oakland first-year head coach Norv Turner might not be any closer to naming a starting tailback but the fact that Tyrone Wheatley ran with authority makes it hard not to have him as the man.

-- The young Raider receivers such as Alvis Whitted, Ronald Curry, Doug Gabriel, Johnnie Morant and Carlos Francis flashed their big play ability at various times. Francis showed his lightning speed on an 86-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.

-- The revamped defense could still use a little bit of work but they had more of a bend but don't break approach. The good news was that running lanes did not open up like a hospitality suite. Linebackers Danny Clark and Akbar Gbaja-Biamila had the most active games.

-- The return and kicking games were bright spots but the coverage problems continued to rear their ugly head. Two missed tackles led to a 49er touchdown on a punt return. Another long San Francisco kickoff return got called back but the fact that a hole was there will not please newly hired special teams coach Joe Avezzano.


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