Jon Gruden: Schedule will test our mental toughness

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The Raiders played their first two games at home, but it is going to be some time before they play their next game in Oakland.

They’ll be in Minnesota Sunday and Indianapolis in Week Four before heading to London for a “home” game against the Bears. A bye week follows and then they’ll be on to games in Green Bay and Houston before finally playing another game in Oakland on November 3.

It was a scheduling quirk that the league’s vice president of broadcasting Michael North said he regretted when the slate was announced in April and it is one that still rankles Raiders head coach Jon Gruden.

“We are still trying to understand how that happened, but we are going to have to deal with it,” Gruden said, via “We just have to showcase our mental toughness and deal with it. It’s uncommon, maybe unprecedented, maybe unrealistic that this should ever happen in pro football. I’m not excited about it, but we’ll adapt and do it the best we can.”

Uncommon though it may be, the Raiders are not alone in having that kind of gap between games in their home stadium. The Buccaneers have the same stretch this season and their coach Bruce Arians wasn’t any happier about it than Gruden.

42 responses to “Jon Gruden: Schedule will test our mental toughness

  1. Chances are the Raiders will lose all 4 games whether away or at home…they really should be in the CFL….like in Toronto….

  2. The Raiders man up and win some games for a change regardless of where. Not easy when the qb plays frightened!!

  3. Once again the NFL proves the halves bet the breaks while the have nots get screwed. The Pats travel outside the eastern time zone once and all there “tough” games are home. It is getting to the point, I can’t watch anymore.

  4. Who cares. It’s not like the 60s or 70s and the players are flying coach section.

    These days, every team has a private chartered plane, they have the convenience of pre-clearance checking at the stadium (and by bus straight to boarding their plane), smartphones for hours of music and entertainment, etc.

  5. “maybe unrealistic that this should ever happen in pro football”

    There really is nothing professional about it, the Raiders have always gotten the shaft from the NFL with many things, not just schedules, but this is really over the top.

    Ask yourself this, but this happened to the Pats or the Giants?

  6. Thanks NFL for the fair schedule ..the Raiders have to paly two teams every week the opposing team and the zebra men now we have the NFL telling us London is a home game and we wont be back in Oakland until November . Six weeks on the road hardly seems fair even all you Raider malcontents can agree to disagree with that .

    Three’s only one Nation


  7. Aren’t the Raiders currently homeless anyway. They abandoned Oakland when they signed on with Las Vegas. The road is your home until then.

  8. Terry Leatherman says:
    September 19, 2019 at 7:53 am
    ..The Pats travel outside the eastern time zone once and all there “tough” games are home…
    You do realize the schedules rotate? Pats have often had hard away games and years – it just so happens for once they got a fairly easy schedule. And don’t let haters (eg CBS) convince you the Pats always have an easier strength of sched. – they can’t play themselves so any team playing them will always be facing a tougher schedule – especially other AFCE teams who play them twice every year!

  9. Inexcusable that an unfair schedule like this is put out in the age of pocket computers. Johnny down the road at Foxboro High could do better. Or Foxborough, if ya want to get technical. Or Foxytown, if Kay Adams is around.

  10. Meanwhile Super Bowl champ pats don’t face a playoff team from last year in the first 8 weeks of the season.

  11. Meh. Don’t ask me. I’m still trying to figure out how the offense can only score 10 points at home against the chefs.
    If you’re going to lose to the chefs, score more points and lose.
    “Offensive guru”.

  12. Remember back earlier this year when the Raiders didn’t know where their 2019 home would be? Because the lease ran out on the Oakland Coliseum? The NFL could not publish a schedule because it was waiting on the Raiders.. Well, the NFL has a way of punishing those teams that test their patience. The Raiders knew this was going to happen…

  13. Terry Leatherman says:
    September 19, 2019 at 7:53 am
    Once again the NFL proves the halves bet the breaks while the have nots get screwed. The Pats travel outside the eastern time zone once and all there “tough” games are home. It is getting to the point, I can’t watch anymore.

    This year the AFC East matches up against the NFC East and the AFC North. All 4 AFC North teams are in the Eastern time zone. Only 1 NFC East team is outside the Eastern time zone. The Patriots don’t make their schedule, they are subject to the same rotation setup every other NFL team is. With the NFL scheduling quirks, there have been periods in recent years where they’ve played at Denver 3 straight years. In 2020, they will have to play road games at Seattle, at Kansas City, at Los Angeles twice as they’ll play both the Rams and Chargers.

    Also, given the way the teams in the NFL are spread out, West Coast teams always have to do the most traveling. It’s the same way in every other sport too – the Seattle Mariners routinely travel significantly more miles every year than say the New York Yankees or the Chicago White Sox do.

  14. Terry Leatherman says:
    September 19, 2019 at 7:53 am

    Once again the NFL proves the halves bet the breaks while the have nots get screwed. The Pats travel outside the eastern time zone once and all there “tough” games are home. It is getting to the point, I can’t watch anymore.


    The league has been helping the Pats for the better part of two decades. They did one ridiculous “make up call” by suspending Brady for the weak “Deflategate” … but that was all a ruse …. obviously the preferential treatment never stopped and I don’t look for it to.

  15. Any wins that a Gruden-coached squad has against quality teams will be because those teams let those contests become trap-games.

    I’ll be very surprised if the Raiders surpass 4 or 5 wins in any year as long as Gruden is the HC.

  16. The Raiders defensive style is to stop the run by playing their DB’s in the open gaps. Problem with that is if the RB gets past 10 yards, there is nobody left to stop him. After the way last weeks game ended. The Vikings are going to tattoo the Raiders. 28-3 or 35-10. It’s going to be brutal.

  17. Nope

    chillyball says:
    September 19, 2019 at 9:56 am
    Chuckie beats Minnie this week.

    Raiders 17
    Vikings 14

  18. Well boo hoo,its the NFL not pop warner get over it.the Raiders are leaving for Vegas next season while the fan base stays home so this is a great experience for their fans to get used to idled baseball stadium on Sundays in the NFL season.

  19. This could have easily been resolved by switching the packers game and the lions game which were only 2 weeks apart…two nfc teams……this was either done on purpose or the schedule maker was lazy or stupid

  20. I would expect this more often in their new stadium.
    Do you really think it’s a good idea to have thousands of people 3-4 beers deep already standing outside in the desert heat waiting to get into a stadium wearing black jerseys when its over 100 degrees out??

  21. Tampa Bay’s schedule is worse. Starting next week…at LARams, at NO, “home” game in London against CAR, bye, at TEN, at SEA. Next home game is 11/10. 6 weeks without a home game and 18,000 miles of travel. Cry me a river Jon. No sympathy here…

  22. The Raiders schedule is always so tough because they are always bad. You would think with all the high draft picks they have had over the last 30 years they would be better….but no.

  23. DC finally looks like he did when he took the team to the playoffs. After a broken leg, then fractured back….everyone was down on him as if anyone could have bounced right back from those injuries. It now appears that if AB was still on the team….and DC stayed healthy, Raiders are a playoff contender. But with the no integrity backroom deals + unrealistic schedule, they will barley win 8 games this year. Yes luck is part of the game, but give me a break..these guys have been cursed since Al traded JG.

  24. “”

    The flip side of this is most of their 2nd half schedule are home games. Sucks for now and later it gets much better

  25. “Funny how this never happens to the Patriots, Packers, Steelers, Cowboys….”


    Yes, because the Packers are getting favoritism by having 6 of their final 9 games ON THE ROAD when the weather turns cold and it would be to their advantage to be at Lambeau.

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