Let’s get this party started.
We continue the never too early series with the Oakland Raiders season preview.
Oakland Raiders Season Preview Overview:
Man, what the hell happened to this franchise?
A once proud organization such as this, shouldn’t be so consistently bad year after year. Especially in the parity level of NFL. The Raiders haven’t had a postseason appearance or an above .500 record since 2002, when they finished runner-up in the NFL. 12 years?? That’s Buffalo Bills or Arizona Cardinals level ineptitude.
The Raiders front office did everything they could to change things, as we had yet another last place finish in the home of M.C. Hammer. Will the 2014 edition be “too legit to quit?” Don’t bet on it.
“Here comes the Hammer” down on what will most likely be yet another last place finish.
Oakland Raiders Season Preview Offense:
“You can’t touch this” is not often the message sent by the offensive line about their quarterback. Terrelle Pryor exceeded my expectations of him in the pros, but that doesn’t mean he was actually good. Matt McGloin was terrible at passing and running an offense until his senior year at Penn State. And he brings little to the table. So they made the right decisions in splashing the cash around and getting two upgrades in at the most important/scrutinized/glorious/interesting position in all of sports.
I really felt bad for Matt Schaub last season; having to endure all that crap from lunatic weirdo Texans fans that have nothing going on in their lives. Don’t cry for him too much though, as Oakland will pay him $8 million this year. Yes, now he was to deal with an even more lunatic fan base while playing with even less talent around him.
What could go wrong here?
Well, here’s a Schaub video in which you’ll come away feeling very optimistic:
Derek Carr is the back-up, and I’m not sold on him as the QB of the future.
He’s just not a franchise level talent. But like I said, both guys are upgrades over what was there. The Raiders added two new tackles, so expect the OL to get better. Run blocking is not a problem, as the rushing attack is the one thing Oakland does very well. We’ll see if the adding of Maurice Jones-Drew to be second banana to Darren McFadden makes the run that much stronger. He made comments today that he’s really looking to prove the naysayers wrong. Will Oakland get their MoJo working as he attacks the game with “something to prove” this season?
Oakland Raiders Season Preview Defense:
When you’re 28th in the NFL in pass defense, you’re going to lose some games. Especially in today’s league; and it really doesn’t help if your offense is 26th in giveaways to boot. I do love their draft picks though. Khahil Mack could be their Von Miller, and he’s a fierce pass-rusher. They also drafted three DBs and two DL on top of that. That’s some good team-needs-based drafting there.
Of course, there’s just so many holes that need to be plugged. Lamarr Houston is gone, and he was a rising talent. However, all that free agent money was spread around, and the defense will see some upgrades too. But how much? They kind of overpaid for aging, overrated players.
Justin Tuck, LaMarr Woodley and Antonio Smith should all help to see the unit progress. The defense as a whole will get a lot better if D.J. Hayden and Nick Roach can get better in their second seasons in the system. Still, the whole AFC West pretty much got better at the same time that the Raiders did. And I would have to rate their offseason as among the worst in all of football, let alone the division.
But hey, at least this offseason they were aggressive in trying to fix things. You can’t say that in previous years.
Oakland Raiders Season Preview Bottom Line:
Power ranking of 32. Sorry, someone has to be last. Another losing season looks very likely, but maybe an improvement to 6-10? That’s progress right?
Paul M. The Sports Bank.net, an affiliate of Fox Sports and Yahoo! He’s been a on news talk shows all across the world. He’s also a special contributor to the Chicago Tribune RedEye edition. Banks has been featured in numerous including NFL.com, Forbes, Bleacher Report, Deadspin, ESPN, NBC, CBS, the History Channel and more. Follow him on Twitter (@paulmbanks)owns Powered by Sidelines Follow paulmbanks