The Oakland Raider's preview is brough to you by TH - and thank goodness because I'm running out of steam.
Ok, let’s get this out in the open before I start. ---------- Sigh,
this is harder than I thought it was going to be. Oh, boy, I…am……a
fan of the Oakland Raiders. Wow, that was really hard to write. Now, I
am not one of those ‘fans’ that emerged when the Raiders were one of
the top teams every year in the AFC West (still in my mind the best –
not the most talented, but most entertaining – divisions in the NFL)
with Gannon, Rice, Garner, and Woodson. I was born this way, I just
can’t help it. I came into this world wearing an eye patch and hating
the Chief, Broncos, Chargers and wayyyyyy back when, the Seahawks (a
hatred I still have for that team). And no, my love of the Raiders is
in no way gang related. I can’t explain it, I just love the Silver and Black.
Now before you get the wrong idea of how this whole preview of
the Oakland Raiders is going to go when it is written by a Raiders fan,
I think they stink…they stunk last year and the year before…heck they
have had one of the longest Super Bowl loser hangovers that I have ever
seen. Well, except for perhaps the KC Chiefs, who have done what
exactly since they won Super Bowl III? (Insert smarmy comment here
Do I, like my Jet loving brother DH think that they are going to
make the playoffs? I hold out hope, but I am not some mad man. The
Raiders have a very young team. With the retirement of Sapp (did he
even make one sack in his entire Raider career?) and the exodus of dead
weight like Jerry Porter, there is not a lot of experience on the team.
Then there is the most overpaid man in all of football, JaMarcus
Russell (I may be calling for Jeff Hostetler in a few weeks time if things aren’t going well). Who else can get paid so much money before even throwing one
ball in the pros?
This team has potential. Their defence is alright,
no big names, but a decent secondary and a workman like linebacking core that
could be good if kept healthy and intact – and off the field for at least half of the game.
Then there is the offence.
Could they be worse than last year? Perhaps, but that might be hard. With a full preseason under his belt, Russell still has a lot to live up to (making so much money) and whom is he throwing to? A wide receiver core that is questionable at best – although Javon Walker could be ok if he stays away from Vegas and stops wearing $20,000 necklaces in the ghetto – although they have two young TE’s in Miller and Madsen that could have a great year with a young QB like Russell. The one thing that they may be able to depend upon is their running game, which ranked 6th in overall yardage gained last year – and that was with Lamont Jordan and Dominic Rhodes – so Huggy Bear Jr. and McFadden have the potential to be a great backfield.
Listen, the Raiders may not be good this year, but they will be
fun to watch, and if Al Davis can keep his mind in check for a year or
more (which may be harder than you think) and keep this team together they could potentially be a good team in a year or so. If all else fails they do have the craziest home fans in the entire NFL. Hey, remember, that is the thing making all the noise under your bed when you are 10…unless you are a Raiders Fan.
5 wins…please have 5 wins…please, oh why are you so bad.