I don’t know what the Oakland Raiders General Manager Reggie McKenzie has up his sleeve, but I’m hoping it’s a couple wild card free agents that he’s ready to sign. The Raiders are in dire need of a left tackle, and it was more than evident during the game against the New Orleans Saints. DE-Cameron Jordan is a good player, make no mistake, but he made Alex Barron look like a throw away rag doll on several plays. Barron was supposed to be revamping his career with the Raiders, but I didn’t see anything that indicated to me that he was a keeper.
To make matters worse, the offensive guards for the Raiders had a horrible game, and the Raiders “New Power Run Scheme” couldn’t get up and running (no pun intended). Wait, maybe I intended it a tad bit. In any event, it’s time to find a couple free agents and bring them into camp. I really hope that McKenzie is going to be hard at work on Saturday, August 17, because the Raiders need help. The question then becomes, who is available on the free agent market?
In my search to find the best free agents available at the offensive line positions, I came across a site called “The Sideline View.” A recent article was published on August 16, 2013, listing the best available free agent offensive linemen. After some extensive research, I’ve come up with a couple of names that just might fit for the Oakland Raiders. The following is a list of who I believe would be good for the Raiders to bring in (No particular order):
1. Jammal Brown (LT)- This former 2005 First Round Draft Pick (New Orleans Saints) stands at 6′ 6″ and weighs 313 pounds. He is 32 years of age and has played in 85 games with 84 starts for the New Orleans Saints (2005-2009) and Washington Redskins (2010-2012). He is an unrestricted free agent. In 2012, he had to have hip surgery to repair a nagging injury that he dealt with for a couple of years, but it is said that he is nearly 100%.
2. Sean Locklear (RT/LT)- This former 2004 Third Round Draft Pick (Seattle Seahawks) stands 6′ 4″ and weighs 310 pounds. He is 32 years of age and he has played in 117 games with 92 starts for the Seattle Seahawks (2004-2010), Washington Redskins (2011), and New York Giants (2012). He is an unrestricted free agent. After tearing his ACL in 2012, the Giants cut him in 2013 prior to the beginning of OTA’s.
3. Jared Gaither (LT)- Selected in the 5th Round of the 2007 Supplemental Draft (Baltimore Ravens), he stands 6′ 9″ and weighs 340 pounds. He is 27 years of age, and he has played in 52 games with 37 starts for the Baltimore Ravens (2007-2011), Kansas City Chiefs (2011), and San Diego Chargers (2011-2012). Probably the best available free agent left tackle on the market, but the only problem with Gaither is whether or not he is motivated to play. After losing his contract in San Diego, maybe he’s ready for some redemption.
Other Available Players- The three aforementioned players are the most noteworthy. However, there are others that are available, but, like any free agent, there are a lot of risks involved. Along with offensive tackles, there are several guards available to McKenzie, and these are just a few names that stand out (No particular order):
Cooper Carlisle (G), Bobbie Williams (OL), Brian Waters (G), Leonard Davis (G), Derrick Dockery (G), and Russ Hochstein (G).
Roster cut-down doesn’t begin until after the Chicago Bears game on August 23, when teams must go from a 90-man roster to a 75-man roster. Therefore, cut ties with some of the under-performing players on the Raiders current roster, and let’s bring in some people to fix the biggest problem. That problem is the offensive line. Without blocking there is no quarterback competition or running game. How can you evaluate any quarterback when they’re laying on the ground or being spun around like a top. This should be a busy weekend for the Raiders Organization, and I envision them bringing in some new players by Monday. The offensive line just won’t cut it with its current left tackle and offensive guards.
Tags: Alex Barron Bobbie Williams Brian Waters Cameron Jordan Cooper Carlisle Derrick Dockery Jammal Brown Jared Gaither Leonard Davis New Orleans Saints Oakland Raiders Reggie McKenzie Russ Hochstein Sean Locklear