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Marla Ridenour on Sports

NFL Network analysts gaining respect for Raiders

By Marla Published: October 10, 2011

The Oakland Raiders, 3-2 going into Sunday's home game against the Browns, seem to be gaining a national following. That includes former 49ers and Lions coach Steve Mariucci and former Cowboys receiver Michael Irvin of the NFL Network.

The Raiders won at Houston 25-20 on Sunday, a day after the passing of legendary owner Al Davis.

“A team that’s motivated like this now, you never know what kind of damage they can do. This is a dangerous team and it’s a team that might win one for the Gipper. They did today,” Mariucci said, according to a release from the network.

"They’ve already turned it around from ‘Just going long, baby,’ to running the football while Al [Davis] was here and they’ll continue that," Irvin said. "That is what will put them in the playoffs."

The Raiders rank second in the league in rushing with 161.8 yards per game going into Monday night's game, while the Browns' defense against the run ranks 26th, allowing 124.5 yards per game.

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