Paul Ladewski

The Oakland Raiders, seen here before a game against the Denver Broncos on Nov. 6, beat the Houston Texans in Mexico City on Monday night, despite the high elevation and pollution. (Aleah Fajardo/Special To S.F. Examiner)

If Raiders were ‘Just win, baby,’ they wouldn’t be in Mexico

The Raiders were scheduled to play one of those gotta-have-it home games…

The Oakland Raiders, seen here before a game against the Denver Broncos on Nov. 6, beat the Houston Texans in Mexico City on Monday night, despite the high elevation and pollution. (Aleah Fajardo/Special To S.F. Examiner)
Former Cal standout Jared Goff got his first NFL start on Sunday. (Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

Goff offers ray of hope amid SoCal gloom

The Jared G​​off era isn’t off to a rousing start in Southern…

Former Cal standout Jared Goff got his first NFL start on Sunday. (Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS)
It’s going to be an exciting battle to see who wins the AFC West. (Aleah Fajardo/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Return of wild, wild west is just what NFL needs

Bailed on the NFL season weeks ago? Tired of so many self-indulged,…

It’s going to be an exciting battle to see who wins the AFC West. (Aleah Fajardo/Special to S.F. Examiner)
San Francisco 49ers running back Carlos Hyde (28) carries the ball against the Arizona Cardinals at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on October 6, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Where, oh, where has Kelly’s vaunted run game gone?

This season in Santa Clara has gone just the way Balls warned…

San Francisco 49ers running back Carlos Hyde (28) carries the ball against the Arizona Cardinals at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on October 6, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
The Los Angeles Rams really don't have an excuse for not playing Jared Goff. (Praveer Sharma/Flickr)

Enough already — just give Goff the darn Ball

Jared Goff, your football career is ready ... After what took place…

The Los Angeles Rams really don't have an excuse for not playing Jared Goff. (Praveer Sharma/Flickr)
San Francisco Giants right fielder Hunter Pence (8)  celebrates center fielder Denard Span (2) scoring a run against the Chicago Cubs in Game 3 of the NLDS at AT&T Park in San Francisco, Calif., on October 10, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Giants can’t lose another game of musical closer chairs

MLB free agency is open for business, and you know what that…

San Francisco Giants right fielder Hunter Pence (8)  celebrates center fielder Denard Span (2) scoring a run against the Chicago Cubs in Game 3 of the NLDS at AT&T Park in San Francisco, Calif., on October 10, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
Raiders wire receiver Amari Cooper, left, stiff-arms Broncos cornerback Taurean Nixon on Sunday at the Oakland Coliseum. (Aleah Fajardo/Special To S.F. Examiner)

Raiders aren’t Super yet, but they’re sure lots of fun

Go ahead, crown ’em if you want. Balls will wait a few…

Raiders wire receiver Amari Cooper, left, stiff-arms Broncos cornerback Taurean Nixon on Sunday at the Oakland Coliseum. (Aleah Fajardo/Special To S.F. Examiner)
Chip Kelly knows there isn’t a magical fix for this team. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Only money could convince Kelly to leave this Chipwreck

For his sake and that of the team, coach Chip Kelly should…

Chip Kelly knows there isn’t a magical fix for this team. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) plays in the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Rams at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on September 12, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Earth to Planet Baalke: Why is Kap still here?

Balls needs help. And, no, it’s not what you’re thinkin’. Can somebody…

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) plays in the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Rams at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on September 12, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
NFL Golden Boy Tom Brady has nothing on Raiders quarterback Derek Carr, who passed for a team record 513 yards in Sunday’s win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Brady Schmady — no player more valuable than Carr right now

If the Raiders aren’t the biggest overachievers in the NFL this season,…

NFL Golden Boy Tom Brady has nothing on Raiders quarterback Derek Carr, who passed for a team record 513 yards in Sunday’s win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) reacts after being called for a technical foul against the San Antonio Spurs at Oracle Arena in Oakland, Calif., on October 25, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Sluggish Warriors show that superteams even lose great

OK, Dubs Nation, you can pick your jaw off the floor now.…

Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) reacts after being called for a technical foul against the San Antonio Spurs at Oracle Arena in Oakland, Calif., on October 25, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
Stephen Curry works his magic on Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard on Friday at Oracle Arena. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

All or nothing: Reloaded Warriors owe us one

The NBA regular season is around the corner, and here’s a prediction…

Stephen Curry works his magic on Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard on Friday at Oracle Arena. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
Derek Carr may have been drafted behind Jacksonville play-caller Blake Bortles, but the Raiders quarterback proved Sunday that he’s got the higher ceiling. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Carr bests Bortles, Raiders get this one right

Two years ago, general manager Reggie McKenzie and the Raiders had a…

Derek Carr may have been drafted behind Jacksonville play-caller Blake Bortles, but the Raiders quarterback proved Sunday that he’s got the higher ceiling. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
Klay Thompson (center) was recently criticized by Jason Terry (not pictured) for not being as good as James Harden (left). Nevermind that Thompson outplayed Harden in the 2016 NBA Playoffs. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)

Klay-brained Jason Terry starts NBA season in style

The NBA regular practice season is only days away, and you know…

Klay Thompson (center) was recently criticized by Jason Terry (not pictured) for not being as good as James Harden (left). Nevermind that Thompson outplayed Harden in the 2016 NBA Playoffs. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)
Kansas City Chiefs running back Charcandrick West trucks through Raiders linebacker Bruce Irvin in the fourth quarter on Sunday at O.co Coliseum. (John Sleezer/Kansas City Star)

Black-and-bruised Raiders aren’t the stuff of champions

After four close wins in their first five games, the jury remained…

Kansas City Chiefs running back Charcandrick West trucks through Raiders linebacker Bruce Irvin in the fourth quarter on Sunday at O.co Coliseum. (John Sleezer/Kansas City Star)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick watches from the sidelines against the Los Angeles Rams at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara on Sept. 12, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Santa Clara changes Kap, looks worse than ever

Some alleged experts promised instant improvement for the Santa Clara offense with…

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick watches from the sidelines against the Los Angeles Rams at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara on Sept. 12, 2016. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
The Chicago Cubs technically eliminated the San Francisco Giants. In reality, it was the Giants' own inaction at the deadline that buried them. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Giants can look in mirror for BS (blown saves)

History says the Giants’ season crashed and burned in Game 4 of…

The Chicago Cubs technically eliminated the San Francisco Giants. In reality, it was the Giants' own inaction at the deadline that buried them. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
The 49ers are best served cutting ties with Colin Kaepernick and starting fresh with a franchise quarterback in next year’s draft. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Long past time for Niners to scrap Kap, Ponder future

Well, well, well, the 49ers appear to have run into a clue,…

The 49ers are best served cutting ties with Colin Kaepernick and starting fresh with a franchise quarterback in next year’s draft. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)
(Jim McIsaac/Newsday/TNS)

Sleeping Giants are overmatched against pitch-rich Cubs

CHICAGO — The Giants trail 2-0 in the NLDS after a 5-2…

(Jim McIsaac/Newsday/TNS)
Chicago Cubs shortstop Addison Russell, left, tags out the San Francisco Giants' Gorkys Hernandez as he tries to steal second base in the first inning in Game 1 of the National League Division Series at Wrigley Field in Chicago on Friday. (Armando Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

Cubs’ pitchers dominate Giants again in NLDS opener

CHICAGO — Consider that they could be on the first tee somewhere,…

Chicago Cubs shortstop Addison Russell, left, tags out the San Francisco Giants' Gorkys Hernandez as he tries to steal second base in the first inning in Game 1 of the National League Division Series at Wrigley Field in Chicago on Friday. (Armando Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS)