ALAMEDA – Marshawn Lynch was beside himself after not getting the ball on first-and-goal from the 1. The Raiders running back has been in that position before and experienced an identical outcome, with an interception thrown in the end zone.
Lynch's helmet nearly bared the brunt of his frustrations. He ripped it off, lifted it high overhead and with force required to slam it on the turf. He checked that swing, but was visibly angered by the days events, which led to a 26-10 loss to the L.A. Chargers on Sunday afternoon.
"I don't want to see anybody get upset. I want everyone to be happy," head coach Jon Gruden said Monday. "It won't be the last pass I call on first-and-goal either. I think it's the best time to throw down there. I regret that it was intercepted. Turns out to be a horrible call, but we were down 20-3. Melvin Ingram is their middle linebacker in a jam front and I wanted to throw a play-action pass on the one-foot line. My opinion is that it shouldn't have been intercepted. We shouldn't do that right there. But, we did. Lynch is frustrated. I think I threw my visor and my headset, so I think he and I have a lot in common."
Gruden's mood hadn't improved by Monday. He remains upset about that play, the latest result and a 1-4 start that has many considering the Raiders among the NFL's worst.
Mounting losses aren't taxing Gruden's will, but they have sullied his mood.
"I just don't like to lose," Gruden said. "I think we have work to do. There's not enough time in the day to do it. I'm depressed. I'm tired. I want to win. I want to do better. We have to get back to work here."
They have to work through a weird week, practicing early and travelling to London relatively late to play the Seattle Seahawks in the United Kingdom.
There's plenty to fix after the Chargers dismantled the Silver and Black in every phase. Gruden said there were positives to take from the experience, though his list of detrimental play is long.
"I think there is a lot of good things, honestly, that happened yesterday," Gruden said. "The scoreboard was lousy, field position was bad. We gave up some big plays, and that was not good. Terrible interception in the red zone. There were some negative things that are still resonating with me and Raider Nation."
Gruden took responsibility for some of his team's shortcomings, though he'll continue to emphasize the positives while working through this tough stretch.
"I'm going to continue to emphasize the good and do everything I can to fix the things that are bad," Gruden said, "because most of the things that are bad, my fingerprints are all over."
That's natural given the power he wields. Gruden's game planning has been good. His play design and play calling have been strong. His personnel moves, however, have set the team back.
Players have taken responsibility for poor execution, for pressing and trying too hard to play hero ball.
As it currently stands, however, the Raiders will struggle to win games if they don't improve on several fronts.