December 2007 - Oakland Raiders Wiretap
Sapp Fined $75,000 For Outburst Against Ref
Oakland Raiders' defensive tackle Warren Sapp was fined $75,000 on Thursday by the NFL for his confrontation with game officials that led to his ejection last week. Sapp avoided a suspension, however. The league said Sapp was punished for "physical and verbal actions toward game officials that drew an unprecedented three unsportsmanlike conduct penalties and ejection from last Sunday's game." Defensive end Derrick Burgess was also fined $25,000 for verbally abusing an official during the same sequence. The punishments were announced after the Raiders' media availability on Thursday so neither player nor Coach Lane Kiffin was available to comment. Both Sapp and Kiffin said previously they were not worried about a possible suspension.
Culpepper, Fargas Done For Season
The Raiders placed quarterback Daunte Culpepper and running back Justin Fargas on the injured reserve list Wednesday, officially ending their seasons - and quite possibly their careers in Oakland - one week early. Culpepper, who signed a one-year contract in training camp, missed the past four games with a quad injury. Fargas, an unrestricted free agent, incurred a knee sprain two weeks ago. Both were replaced on the roster by practice squad offensive linemen for Sunday's season finale against the visiting Chargers. Culpepper isn't likely to return because he wants to be an NFL starter, and No. 1 overall draft pick JaMarcus Russell figures to take over fulltime next season. Fargas is looking at a big payday on the free-agent market after his first 1,000-yard season. He set career highs with 222 carries for 1,009 yards and four touchdowns in seven starts before spraining knee ligaments against the Colts.
Raiders' Sapp: 'Just Words' Don't Merit Suspension
Oakland Raiders' defensive tackle Warren Sapp said on Wednesday he does not expect to be suspended by the NFL after being ejected from last week's 49-11 loss to Jacksonville. Speaking about the incident for the first time, Sapp defended his actions and blamed the officiating crew for the situation which resulted in Oakland getting hit with four unsportsmanlike conduct penalties late in the first half, three on Sapp. After the game, referee Jerome Boger said Sapp bumped umpire Garth DeFelice during the argument which was why he was ejected, a claim the seven-time Pro Bowl defensive lineman vehemently denies. "Come on, I've never touched anybody in any shape, form or anything," Sapp said. "I've never been in a fight in this league. It's not about a fight." Sapp was given Wednesday off by the Raiders, as has been the team's custom with the 35-year-old veteran much of the season. He is expected to practice Thursday in anticipation of playing in Oakland's season finale against playoff-bound San Diego.
Sources: NFL Considers One-Game Suspension For Raiders' Sapp
Raiders' DT Warren Sapp faces a possible one-game suspension for bumping an official in Sunday's game against Jacksonville, league sources confirmed to ESPN. A decision could come Wednesday. Sapp was ejected from the game after he bumped umpire Garth DeFelice late in the second quarter. He earlier had drawn a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for verbally abusing an official which apparently was ongoing in the game, sources said.
Raiders' Russell Will Get First Career Start Against Chargers
Despite a rough outing in his longest stint of the year on Sunday afternoon, rookie quarterback JaMarcus Russell, the top pick in the 2007 draft, will get the first start of his career when the Raiders conclude the season against the Chargers on Sunday. Coach Lane Kiffin, who brought Russell along slowly after the former LSU star missed all of training camp as contract negotiations dragged on, has been reluctant to install the rookie as his starter. And Kiffin's worst fears were realized in Sunday's loss to Jacksonville when Russell had four turnovers and was temporarily knocked from the game with a head injury. But with only one game remaining on the schedule, the Raiders want to get a long look at Russell so they can assess his progress moving forward into 2008.
Sapp Ejected Against Jags In Bizarre Sequence
Raiders' defensive tackle Warren Sapp was ejected from Sunday's game against the Jaguars after receiving three unsportsmanlike conduct penalties. Sapp, who was not in the locker room after the 49-11 loss, received all three of the penalties in a strange series of events that started when Jacksonville right tackle Tony Pashos was flagged for illegal use of hands to the face. Officials said the Raiders declined the penalty, and the Jaguars lined up for a 43-yard field goal attempt with 21 seconds to play in the first half. Officials then said Oakland would accept the penalty, making it third-and-20 from the Raiders' 35-yard line. "Warren was upset because they tried to make the call before we made our decision," linebacker Thomas Howard said. "That's why Warren was upset. So then a flag was thrown, and then it was just wild commotion after that. They threw another flag and then another. Everybody's arguing and asking why these flags got thrown."
Raiders' Russell Probably Not Starting On Sunday
Josh McCown will start at quarterback for the Oakland Raiders on Sunday in Jacksonville with rookie JaMarcus Russell slated to come off the bench as a reserve. Coach Lane Kiffin had considered giving Russell his first career start against the Jaguars and then bring in McCown to finish the game. Russell, this year's No. 1 overall draft pick, has played five series in two games as a reserve so far. Kiffin said Russell could come in during the first half and possibly might finish the game depending on how the situation played out.
McCown To Start For Oakland, Russell To Play
Josh McCown will start at quarterback for the Raiders on Sunday in Jacksonville, with rookie JaMarcus Russell slated to come off the bench as a reserve. Coach Lane Kiffin had considered giving Russell his first career start against the Jaguars and then bring in McCown to finish the game. Russell, this year's No. 1 overall draft pick, has played five series in two games as a reserve so far. Kiffin said Russell could come in during the first half and possibly might finish the game depending on how the situation played out.
Raiders' Fargus Shut Down With Sprained MCL
The emergence of Justin Fargas as a featured running back has been the highlight offensively for the Raiders this season. Now they will have to finish the season without their 1,000-yard back. An MRI on Monday confirmed that Fargas sprained the MCL in his right knee in Sunday's loss, shutting him down for the final two games of the season.
Russell Will Definitely Play Sunday
Six-year veteran Josh McCown will start a third straight week for the Oakland Raiders, but the bigger news Thursday? Coach Lane Kiffin has committed to playing time for rookie quarterback JaMarcus Russell for Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts. Russell, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2007 draft, has appeared in only one game this season, Oakland's Dec. 2 victory over the Denver Broncos, and has spent much of the year third on the depth chart. Kiffin has not said how much Russell will play Sunday, but has designed a limited package of specific plays for the former LSU star. The expectation is that Russell will enter the game in the second quarter and probably play two series. "You have a plan, but you don't know if the plan will go exactly the way you want," Kiffin said. "The last time [Russell] played, it went perfectly."
No. 1 Pick Russell Makes Pro Debut
JaMarcus Russell had been brought along slowly after missing all of training camp and the exhibition season in a contract dispute.
McCown To Start If Culpepper Can't Go Against Broncos
QB Josh McCown took the majority of snaps with the first team on Friday despite having two dislocated joints in his non-throwing pinky.