In this continuing segment, “Ask an Oakland Raiders Fan,” Just Blog Baby had the pleasure of being contacted by Erik Gil. Erik Gil, is 22 years old and he is originally from Michoacan, Mexico, but he now calls Hansen, Idaho, home. He has a 5-year-old daughter and she is his everything. Erik enlisted in the United States Army as an Infantryman to serve his country. This is his way of giving back to his country for the opportunities it has afforded him. He is currently stationed in Fort Polk, Louisiana.
Erik has been a Raiders fan ever since he can remember. His uncle is a die-hard Raiders fan, and, as a kid, he would go to his home and see black and silver all over. He just fell in love with the whole Raiders image. Now everyone in Erik’s family bleeds black and silver. It’s more than a passion, it’s an addiction, and a family tradition that brings his whole family together, and it always will be.
Erik answered the following questions for me, and these were his responses:
1. How well do you think the Oakland Raiders will perform in 2013? Discuss.
Answer- “I think they will do alright. My heart says they will surprise everyone and be 8-8, but my head says that we are not there yet. We are on the right path, no doubt of that. I think it’s going to take another year to fully see the talent and potential that Reggie (McKenzie) has been able to manage. I see ourselves going 6-10, and definitely no number one pick for the Raiders next NFL draft. I just hope my heart is right.”
2. What is your favorite off-season move that was made by the Oakland Raiders? Explain.
Answer- “Tough question! So many, but I would have to say bringing back Charles Woodson. Now with Jenkins, Porter, Hayden and Branch we have a lot of talent in the secondary. In a division with Payton (Manning), Rivers, and Smith, we needed that talent, and Charles Woodson is the glue that is going to keep the secondary from breaking and he provide well needed leadership. I was so happy to see Woodson back with the silver and black.”
3. Can Denarius Moore become an elite receiver? If so, what must he do to become one?
Answer- “Yes!! He has so much talent and potential that he could dominate the game. Just remember the Buffalo game. As a rookie nobody could stop him. He just needs to study the game more, and he has to have more dedication to get better like DHB did. I really do believe he will make that jump this season.”
4. Who is your favorite Oakland Raider of all time, and why?
Answer- “Charles Woodson, I just love his game and the love he has for the game. I admire his leadership and how he presents himself in and out of the game. He’s a true athlete. What else can I say about him, he came back to his home where he started, in order to help our team and lead us to glory. A true raider.”
5. What is your favorite Oakland Raiders memory, and what is a typical tailgate party like for you at home games?
Answer- “Week 9, 2010, versus the Chiefs, was probably the best game I have ever seen. There was so much heart and will to win that game, and it was just an awesome feeling watching that game. I never will forget Jacoby’s OT catch, and Veldheer’s block on Tamba Hali to make that play happen.”
“I have never been to a Raiders game but soon that will change. On game day, it’s a party at my house. BBQ and lots of yelling and excitement. It’s the best day of the week.”
No worries Erik, I didn’t see my first home game until 2004, and I am 40 years old. I took my mom to her first home game, and she is in her 60’s now. It doesn’t make you less of a Oakland Raiders fan. Being a fan is in your heart. That’s what Raider Nation gives to their team, heart.
I would like to extend my thanks to Erik Gil for taking the time to conduct this interview. Again, if any of Raider Nation would like a chance to answer a few questions themselves, please contact me via email. I will be continuing this segment through July 25th (The start of training camp).