Good news?

Is the Walter era actually a good sign? With the Oakland Raiders losing the first two games by a combined 55-3, the second worst two-game stretch in franchise history, it may be wise for the Walter era not only to begin but to remain.

The Raiders got good news on quarterback Aaron Brooks Monday, but at the same time will move forward in the immediate future with Andrew Walter at quarterback. Brooks, who was announced as having a strained rotator cuff injury following Sunday's 28-6 loss to the Baltimore Ravens, actually suffered a strained pectoral muscle.

While not as potentially serious as a rotator cuff injury, coach Art Shell said Brooks will miss at least one game -- meaning Walter will draw the start when the Raiders resume play following the bye week against the Cleveland Browns on October 1.

So what happens if Walter leads the Raiders to victory? Shell seemed to be leaning toward reinstating Brooks.

"You don't lose a job (because of injury) unless something really goes out of whack," Shell said. "We've just got to go with what we have and see what happens down the road."

Walter absorbed six sacks, including a one in the end zone that resulted in safety. He refused to use that as an excuse for throwing three interceptions and fumbling three times, losing one.

"It was tough. I've got to play better," Walter said. "It doesn't really matter about the pass rush. I can get hit every play but I still have to complete the football."

"You look at the tape and you learn," Walter said. "That's all you can do."

In his brief appearance against San Diego and again against the Ravens, Walter had a few series where he moved the Raiders. But he failed to get into the end zone, on one play missing an open Randy Moss in the end zone.

"It's better than stalling out and not getting anything going, but at the end of the drive to miss Randy in the end zone, or have an interception or a fumble, those things kill you," Walter said.

Shell stood behind offensive coordinator Tom Walsh, a controversial choice for offensive coordinator back in February being that he had been out of the NFL since 1994.

"I felt comfortable with him. He knows the kind of system I try to run. He's familiar with what we do," Shell said. "Were there other guys? Sure. If Tom didn't want to do it, I'd consider other people."

Shell said any changes in the offense with Walter as the starter instead of as the backup will be subtle.

"With each quarterback you try to come up with a package that's good for them," Shell said. "When Andrew had to go into the game today we had to do the things that he does well. All the quarterbacks write down plays they like during the course of the week and give it to (offensive coordinator Tom Walsh). We try to utilize what they like."

What Walter would like is a little time to throw, although he is far too tactful to say it. He said he sees no lack of confidence among players on the offensive line.

"If they do, they should just try to look at the tape and learn," Walter said. "I mean, that's what I am going to do. That's all you can do. We have a bye week and 14 in a row. I don't see anybody losing confidence after two games."

SB Report Top Stories