OAKLAND — The Raider Nation is stirring to a frenzy.
Not Tim Brown. Not yet.
"I'm not really excited. I won't be excited until we get past the game next week. I've been this far," said Brown, a Raider since he was a first-round pick for Los Angeles in the 1988 draft.
"I'm an old guy. I reserve my emotions until it's timely."
Brown, 34, is eyeing the Super Bowl.
The last time he got this far, the Raiders lost to Buffalo in the AFC title game, 51-3, after the 1990 season.
Guard Steve Wisniewski was on that team too, but playoffs of the past weren't on his mind Saturday.
"Honestly, it's been so long I can't tell you what my experience of the playoffs was," said Wisniewski, a Raider since 1989.
The Raiders' last playoff appearance was after the 1993 season.
The Miami Dolphins admitted what has been obvious for as long as the NFL has been awarding first-round byes and home-field advantage to the two top teams in each conference.
If you have to travel in the playoffs, you are in trouble.
If you have to travel across the country a few days after winning an overtime playoff game and play a rested team, you are in big trouble.
"We really needed to be at home during the playoffs," Dolphin guard Mark Dixon said. "It really matters. . . . They pounded us once we gave them the chance. They were rested."
Nowhere was this fatigue more obvious than in the legs of Lamar Smith, the running back who gained 209 yards in 40 carries during last week's overtime victory against the Indianapolis Colts. He had four yards in eight carries Saturday.
"Lamar was healthy, there were no excuses," Dolphin Coach Dave Wannstedt said.
Then why did Smith, nursing a sore ankle, carry only eight times? Even though the Dolphins fell behind, 20-0, in the first half, there was still time to run back into the game. And why did he share some of the load with J.J. Johnson and Autry Denson?
"We fell into the trap that we can always come back," Dixon said. "This week it was really a trap for us."
Kicker Sebastian Janikowski, the Raider first-round pick who struggled with inconsistency early in the season, made two field goals and is 18 for his last 22.
He was good on kicks of 36 and 33 yards against Miami, missing on a 58-yard kick that fell short at the end of the first half.
His longest field goal of the season was 54 yards.
A sign in one end zone read "In memory--Dan Turk--Always a Raider."
Turk, who played for the Raiders from 1989-96, died of cancer last month at 38.
His brother, Matt Turk, is the Dolphins' punter.
The shutout was the first for the Raider defense in the team's playoff history. . . . Raider running back Napoleon Kaufman left the game in the first half after aggravating a knee and thigh injury.