ALAMEDA – The 2002 Raiders got off to a hot start. Then they went in the tank.
As y'all recall, that downturn didn't kill a season. The Silver and Black rallied together and ended up in the Super Bowl.
Quarterback Rich Gannon was in the driver's seat for that incredible run. That year's NFL MVP was awesome then.
He believes Derek Carr can be a catalyst now. This year's Raiders are in a rut, mired in a three-game losing streak heading into Sunday's game against the Los Angeles Chargers.
Their franchise quarterback will return after a game sidelined with a fractured back, and needs to get these Raiders back to .500 after unexpected early-season struggles. The Raiders were a sexy Super Bowl pick. Now they're trying to turn things around.
"The expectations were so high," Gannon said in on this week's Raiders Insider Podcast. "They got off to a good start, but they've kind of flat-lined a little bit. Look, the year we went to the Super Bowl back in 2002, we started 4-0. We were the hottest team in football, and then we lost four straight games. We go it turned around, and finished 7-1.
"They have to find a way to flip the switch. There's no secret formula. You have to keep grinding it out."
The Raiders certainly expected better than 2-3 through five games.
"This is a team that went 12-4 last year, and they need to realize that there's nothing guaranteed in this business," Gannon said. "It doesn't entitle you to anything, not even a first down. You have to earn it."