Bulletin board material is quite possibly the most overly referenced and consistently pointless thing in pro football. It lingers in the media for no other reason than that it fills a cheap news hole and it's easy for the reporters to seize upon and pretend that it has a substantial effect on the game being discussed.
If someone talks trash and their team loses, it's because they awoke a sleeping giant who otherwise would never have never considered bringing any sort of intensity to a sporting contest. If the smack talker wins, the credit can be given to his fiery intensity as the difference maker.
Usually, when coaches go about looking for bulletin board material, they typically draw quotes from players and coaches currently employed by the team they're going to play. Not that exceptions to that rule are necessarily off limits, because, hey, it's just a statement that casts even the slightest doubt on that team's capacity for victory. Any old negative quote will do.
According to the Contra Costa Times' Jerry McDonald, the Raiders had to tweak a negative quote that the former Chargers and Chiefs coach made about Oakland on his Sirius radio show on Monday. Here's the actual quote:
"Well, from my perspective, you know, I’ve always saw in that football team, they don’t finish plays very well. And I’m not going to sit here and tell you that, you know, that they don’t care, but I do think that losing over an extended period of time produces guys that tend to.
"They don’t finish plays the way you need to finish plays. And, in the National Football League, it’s all about how you finish whatever it is you’re doing, whether it’s on offense, defense or in the kicking game. And that was always the thing that I felt about the Raiders and why I felt we could always beat them is, that if you just go out and do your job and you do it and commit yourself to doing it for the entire contest, regardless how much time that is, go finish the thing, and they would find a way – I always would tell our players, if you just hang in there with the Raiders, they will find a way in the end to lose themselves."
That's a fairly measured, if still critical statement. But not quite enough to elicit white-hot rage. That needs a little doctoring, a little creative distillation. Here, minus a few words capitalized and underlined for effect, is what the Raiders changed it to:
"The one constant you can count on in playing the Raiders is that they don’t finish. They don’t finish plays and they don’t finish games. I always told my players that if they kept playing hard against the Raiders, they would eventually fold. That is why I knew we would always win. That is still the perception around the league."
Well, that's certainly more forceful. And more about the Raiders being soft than merely undisciplined, as the original quote stressed. Well, we know as far as proper quote attribution goes, we now know Schottenheimer was correct. They'll skew any quote you make! They'll never publish a more respectable sports publication than I can!
[H/T - ProFootballTalk]