Victory Lap

Did Raiders Victory Lap Wake a Sleeping Bear in Kansas City?

By Levi Thompson November 17, 2020 0 Comment
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A war of words has broken out amongst Andy Reid and John Gruden regarding the Raiders “victory lap” after their win in Week 5.

The Kansas City Chiefs and Las Vegas Raiders are no stranger to trash talk. They’re two teams that don’t particularly care for each other. One of the NFL’s biggest rivalries is really heating up prior to Sunday nights matchup. First, I need to credit Sports Producer at 41 Action News in Kansas City, Nick Jacobs, for the story here. He was first to report, that, after the Raiders had defeated the Chiefs 40-32 in a Week 5 matchup, the Las Vegas Raiders treated themselves to a victory lap around Arrowhead Stadium. What’s worse is, they used emergency resources to do this, requesting the police escort lead them around the stadium.

What is Andy Reid saying about it?

Anybody that knows Chiefs’ head coach Andy Reid, knows he’s not one for controversy. He doesn’t go stirring the pot where it doesn’t need stirred. He is usually very even keeled. But, it was evident by his comments on Monday, that the victory lap did not sit well with the hall of fame coach. He mentioned the victory lap a couple of different times, first saying that “that’s not our style”. Then, when asked if he’s given any thought to the idea that beating a team once in a season makes it more difficult to beat them again he replied with; “I haven’t, but I think they have or they wouldn’t have driven the bus around the stadium”. Andy Reid was noticeably ticked off talking about this.

What is John Gruden saying about it?

John Gruden was also noticeably ticked about the situation. Except, he was ticked for two reasons. He was upset that the story got out, and about a “smart-aleck bus driver”. A reporter asked Gruden about the victory lap and he said “you can find a smart-aleck bus driver in Kansas City who made some snide comments when we got on the bus. Maybe that’s why we drove around the stadium, to tick him off”.

There are a few issues with Gruden’s statements. First of all, nobody has been able to confirm this story about the “smart aleck bus driver”. Several radio hosts put tweets out begging him to call into their shows. Secondly, if we are to take Gruden’s comments literally, a Kansas City bus driver got so into his head that he used a police escort to drive around the stadium.

Don’t wake a sleeping bear

There’s an expression that says “don’t wake a sleeping bear”. I think this would be good advice for the Raiders right about now. The Chiefs, by all appearances, were sleepwalking through the first half of their season. There were many games where we looked very vanilla, and then games where we appeared to turn it on. For example, the Jets, Chargers, and Raiders game the Chiefs looked like they were simply going through the motions, and still won two of the three. However, the Chiefs exploded on Monday Night Football against the Baltimore Ravens. All week before that game we were hearing the media portray this as a “revenge game” for Baltimore as the Chiefs were 2-0 against them with Lamar Jackson. They were a sleeping bear and the media woke them up. Game over.

The Chiefs could beat the Raiders without any bulletin board material. That’s a fact. But, now that they have some, the Raiders should be shaking in their boots. There are a select few people on this planet that I would be afraid to tick off. Andy Reid before a prime time football game would be at the top of that list. The Chiefs were sound asleep, hibernating in their den, and the Raiders, after that victory lap, came into the den with cowbells. We should be in for a fun one on Sunday night.

What does this mean for Sunday night’s game?

There are about 31 other teams I would rather be right now than the Las Vegas Raiders. Andy Reid is 24-5 with an extra week to prepare (including postseason). This is something that yesterday, John Gruden chalked up to as “just a coincidence”. Just in case they didn’t wake the bear with the victory lap shenanigans. There are so many things going against the Raiders Sunday night, much of which they put on themselves. The chances are that the Chiefs will come out and absolutely boat race the Raiders. This is a huge rivalry game, with big implications for both teams, so nothing can be counted out, but the odds certainly aren’t in the Raiders favor. The final score prediction for this one is Chiefs 45 Raiders 17. Get your popcorn ready, because no matter what the score, this game is going to be emotional and chippy for both sides.

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