“Raider Nation, hear me, I hope you get this, we need you in those stands supporting us, we need to have a great twelfth man from here on in because we’re doing our part and it’s coming together.”
Those were the words of Oakland Raiders head coach Tom Cable following last Sunday’s big win over the Denver Broncos.
Cable’s plea went largely unheard judging by the paid attendance at the Coliseum this weekend.
The Week 8 clash with the Seattle Seahawks drew a paid attendance of 35,721. That number is down significantly from the Raiders’ last home game in Week 5 against the San Diego Chargers which had a paid attendance of 48,279.
Yes, the plethora of Chargers fans who made the drive up to the Bay Area for the contest helped boost that number. But the Raiders also drew 48,396 for the season opener against the St. Louis Rams in Week 2.
Next week, for the first time in a long time, when the Kansas City Chiefs come to town the Raiders will be playing for more than bragging rights and pride. They will be playing for AFC West supremacy and to prove to the NFL that they are for real.
Week 9 could bring with it not only an elusive third win, but also lift the long-standing television blackout.
If that’s not incentive enough to pack the stands, I don’t know what is.