Raiders coach looks on the bright side

Oakland Raiders head coach Art Shell certainly feels the disappointment from the season but is happy to report progress – perhaps to the extent of nausea.

On disappointment on season

It's disappointing. I expected, of course, to be better than this. But I also knew that this thing would not be an easy thing for us to get done. But even though our record doesn't show it, I think our team is getting better.

On how he sees his team getting better

They're playing like they're supposed to play. They're trying to get things done. They haven't gone south, they're improving. We're going to be okay.

On WR Randy Moss statement earlier this season

We all feel bad. We're all in a foul mood. He's exasperated and he's disappointed and so am I, just like the rest of this football team. We expect to be better and we're not. All I ask Randy to do, just like all the players is go out on the football field and work, and he's been doing that.

On satisfied with Moss' effort

He's been working like the rest of us.

On his decision to change offensive coordinators

It's an important time of the year right now where we are not scoring enough points. Tom (Walsh) gets blamed for a lot of things. But when you don't score enough points, when things don't go right then you got to look in a different direction, so that's what I've done.

On struggle because of Tom Walsh's absence in the NFL for so long

I don't believe so. No, I don't believe that.

On difference with defense

The difference has been the guys have been on the scheme for a couple of years now with (defensive coordinator) Rob (Ryan). We have a lot of good, young players on our defense. We've got pretty good leadership on our defensive squad. Those guys are really playing hard and are really playing well together.

On first round pick DB Michael Huff

Michael is going to be an excellent football player in this league for a long time. He really has really developed and been getting better each and every week. He faces a lot of, in our division of course, he faces a lot of top tight ends in the National Football League and a lot of times not only in our division but in our conference. He is getting better every time out.

On RB LaMont Jordan having a hard time getting on track this season

The team has been having a hard time getting on track not just LaMont. We have tried, LaMont has had a back problem that's gone to have some problems for him. Of course the unfortunate thing with the medial collateral ligament a couple of weeks ago. Hopefully he'll be able to come back next year and be ready to go.

On getting better on pass protection

With Aaron (Brooks) it brings a different dynamic to the table. His ability to move makes things a lot easier for us. He can escape in the pocket, of course our protection has to get better. I think it has gotten a little bit better than it was at the beginning of the year. We're a better football team now than we were at the beginning and Aaron brings a lot to the table for us.

On guarding WR Andre Johnson

That guy can run like a deer and he has outstanding hands and he runs good routes. He's an excellent football player and you can see why he was the number one draft choice.

On feeling confident about what they can do to the Texans after watching them against the Jets

We are preparing for this team just like we were preparing for any other football team. We have a lot of respect for Houston, you can't disrespect anybody in this league because you can get your tails knocked off. We're preparing for Houston just like we were preparing for anybody. They're coming in here, they've got a good football team, their franchise is good and they've got an outstanding coaching staff and they'll be ready to play.

On owner Al Davis handling this season

Al's just like the rest of us. He's disappointed. I'm disappointed but he does not waiver in his resolve to try to make this team better.

On LB DeMeco Ryans

He's pretty good. He's pretty good, he's a tenacious kid. You can tell that it looks like he's one of the leaders of that defense and he makes a lot of plays.

On LT Robert Gallery's status

He's very questionable. Mostly, probably doubtful.


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