It'd be easy to place blame on the Oakland Raiders' Travis Goethel for three flubbed long snaps to punter Shane Lechler on Monday night. But to know the context behind those three bad special teams plays, and it all becomes a little easier to feel bad for the guy.
Pro Bowl longsnapper Jon Condo was knocked out of the game against San Diego, and here's how Goethel, a middle linebacker, ended up as head coach Dennis Allen's backup longsnapper.
"Trust me," Goethel said, "I wish it never happened."
"He asked if I knew how to long snap," Goethel said of Allen, "and I was the only one at camp that stood out. That's kind of how I got put in there."
Neither Lechler nor Allen blamed Goethel either. Considering the limited roster size keeps NFL teams from carrying long snapping specialists as backups, only some practice time gave Goethel the chance to practice. Add Oakland's dirt baseball field to the mix, and it was a recipe for struggle.