October 31 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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This Sundayís match-up between the 49ers and Raiders will be a rematch of a game we saw in the pre-season. The pre-season game was well fought, and for those of you that remember had Mike Rumph making two key pass defendeds. The game, also showed that the Raiders had a plan to easily handle the 49ers.
The 49ers however, are a different team now than they were in the pre-season. Not so much so on defense, where in recent games it has struggled, particularly in defending the pass. But on offense, where the team has been able to move the ball at will, and score with ease.
Itís this change in the offense, that was very lacklustre in the pre-season and early stages of the season that the 49es will bank on to be a difference maker in this weekís game. They will try and exploit the Raiders, and attack them on offense, unlike in the pre-season where conservative play was key, and where the first stringers saw only minimal action.
The Raiders had a good blue print to beat the 49ers team that they faced in the pre-season. If they follow that same blue print, this game will be defining in the sense that the 49ers will be able to see how far they have come since the beginning of the season. Hopefully itís a very long ways.