Raiders

Raiders' Richie Incognito details off-field incidents, bullying scandal

Raiders' Richie Incognito details off-field incidents, bullying scandal

Richie Incognito has been forward-thinking in his public comments since signing with the Raiders in late May. He took a look backward at some harrowing incidents from 2018 and beyond in a sit-down interview with HBO’s “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel” that details troubling moments from his past.

Incognito is happy to have a clean slate right now, however, upon return to the Raiders following a two-game suspension for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy.

“There’s a lot of crazy stuff in my past, and I wanted to come in here and show the world that, ‘Hey. I’m okay,’” Incognito said in a magazine show segment that will air Tuesday night on HBO. “I’m excited about playing for the Oakland Raiders. I’m ready to learn from where I’ve been and move forward.”

HBO unearthed police camera footage of Incognito being arrested in a May 2018 incident where he was throwing objects at someone in a Florida gym and was placed on an involuntary psychiatric hold.

The police footage shows Incognito ranting out unusual things while clearly not in a proper state of mind.

“I was spun out, with paranoia to the nth degree,” Incognito said. “I had not taken care of myself for so long, with lack of sleep and not eating and marijuana and drinking heavily for days and days and weeks on end. That’s what you get, a highly paranoid, very large individual talking a bunch of nonsense.”

Incognito was also arrested in Aug. of 2018 following an incident where he allegedly threatened to shoot people inside an Arizona funeral home shortly after his father’s death.

Those incidents came during a temporary retirement after he left the Buffalo Bills after three Pro Bowl seasons.

“I had fallen into the trap of drinking and drugging again during the 2017 season,” Incognito said. “I was showing up to team functions high. I was not as motivated. I was overweight. A lot of red flags went up. In seeing that, they asked me to take a pay cut, and I said I was retiring and moving on.”

Incognito decided to return to the NFL this year, signing a one-year contract with the Raiders. He says he is in good mental and physical health, ready for the rigors of an NFL season that formally starts for him Sunday at the Minnesota Vikings.

The Raiders are his fourth NFL team and his latest try to get it right and eliminate a poor reputation established during an investigation into whether he bullied Miami Dolphins teammate Jonathan Martin that was front-page news for weeks. Here’s what Incognito had to say about that well-publicized investigation into whether he was harassing Martin with racial and homophobic remarks.

Incognito on using a racial slur toward Martin: “It’s obviously something I regret. It’s one line I can’t cross. Sometimes you say the worst things to the people closest to you. I definitely don’t feel like that makes me a racist person.”

On whether he drove Martin away from the NFL. “I did not drive him out of the league. I believe his mental health issues, and his demons in his past drove him out of the league.”

[RELATED: All eyes on Josh Jacobs vs. Vikings on Sunday]

On the NFL bullying investigation: I” think the report was unfair to my side of things. I think the gentlemen doing the investigation came in with a preconceived notion that I was guilty of doing that. I fit the bill, racist, homophobic and whatnot.

“What I’m saying is that we were close personal friends. It was not factored into the fact it was guy talk. These are two alpha males talking to each other. Was some bad s--t said? Absolutely. Was this a case of bullying? Absolutely not.”

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Chris Simms impressed with Raiders, who have been 'kicking some butt'

Chris Simms impressed with Raiders, who have been 'kicking some butt'

If you're impressed by the Raiders' recent turnaround, you're definitely not alone.

NBC Sports' Chris Simms is at a loss for words when it comes to describing what Oakland has accomplished after what can only be described as a hellish start to the season.

"Wow. I mean, I can't really say enough right now about what I've seen from the Oakland Raiders," Simms told NBC Sports California on Wednesday. "My old coach Jon Gruden has been kicking some butt, and I'm not saying that because he's my old coach. Trust me, I've talked crap about him before when he hasn't been good. I just think the way he is managing the football game right now is phenomenal."

Simms believes part of the Raiders' recent surge can be attributed to Gruden putting his players in the right position to succeed.

"[The team] is playing extremely hard and physical on both sides of the football, but he's managing the offense the right way and managing it in a way that is giving it realistic expectations," Simms continued. "[He's] not asking it to do things that some of the players have not been able to do, and it's playing to their strengths. 

"They're running the football. [The offense is] playing smash-mouth football. When they drop back to pass, it's high-percentage passes. Let's take care of the football that way. And then when they look to strike deep or something like that, it's usually through a play-action pass or something Jon Gruden has designed in the chemistry lab in the week before through his film study."

The Raiders' consecutive wins over the Colts and Bears, in particular, really caught Simms' eye.

"I just really can't say enough about the Raiders and what they're doing right now. Those were two surprise victories for me, and they did it in a physical way."

[RELATED: Could Raiders be AFC West favorites after Mahomes injury?]

If the Raiders keep playing like they have the last two weeks, only more praise will follow.

How Patrick Mahomes injury could change outlook for Raiders, AFC West

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AP

How Patrick Mahomes injury could change outlook for Raiders, AFC West

The AFC West might have just become even more wide open.

It already was heading in that direction after Kansas City lost each of their last two games, but the Chiefs might have suffered an even worse loss Thursday night when quarterback Patrick Mahomes left their game against the Broncos with an apparent leg injury.

Mahomes was in obvious pain after emerging from a pile following a fourth-down sneak. He was able to walk to the locker room, but was ruled out for the rest of the game shortly thereafter.

If Mahomes' injury is as serious as it appears, it would have a drastic effect on the AFC West race. The Raiders (3-2) have put themselves back in contention after winning their last two games over the Colts and Bears. While Kansas City's Matt Moore is a competent backup quarterback, he's nowhere near the same kind of player as the 2018 NFL MVP.

A Chiefs loss to the Broncos combined with a Raiders win over the Packers would leave Oakland all alone in first place in the division. Safe to say, nobody expected that to be a possibility in Week 7.

[RELATED: Green Bay HS legend Ingold ready for homecoming vs. Pack]

The Chiefs, Raiders and the rest of the NFL wait with bated breath for more information about Mahomes' injury.