Dec 22, 2013; San Diego, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders defensive tackles Pat Sims (90) and Vance Walker (98) tackle San Diego Chargers running back Ryan Matthews at Qualcomm Stadium. The Chargers won 26-13. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Oakland Raiders: The Way I See It


This will be a weekly segment in which I provide my opinion on the state of the Oakland Raiders.  I encourage each, and every reader of this blog to comment or ask questions, whether you agree or disagree with the opinion I provide. 

Frankly, I just laugh nowadays when I watch certain sports shows that discuss the state of the AFC West or the Oakland Raiders.  They’re all so far up Peyton Manning’s rear end.  The last time I checked, he lost the Super Bowl.  Didn’t he?  Oh well, I guess they all just think it was a fluke or a freak happening.

The way I see it, the Seattle Seahawks provided all of the NFL with a blueprint on how to defeat the Denver Donkeys, I mean Broncos, no, I mean Donkeys.  Rush the quarterback, get to him, and force him into a decision.  Let’s face it, when Manning is given time in the pocket he is one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game of football.  However, when Manning is forced into a quick decision, like in the Super Bowl, he falters and makes bad throws.  Just ask Tracy Porter when the New Orleans Saints defeated Manning and his Indianapolis Colts in Super Bowl XLIV.

If you recall, Manning and his Colts were the top AFC Seed, just like this past Super Bowl.  He lost to the Saints in 2010 as a top seed, and he lost to the Seahawks in 2013 as a top seed.  I don’t know about you, but, the way I see it, the Seahawks pulled tape from the 2010 Super Bowl and found out Manning’s weaknesses.  They exploited them, and the Seahawks were given their first Super Bowl victory.

What does this mean for the Raiders?  Well, one of the most detrimental areas on the team that the Raiders needed to bolster was the defensive line.  So what did General Manager Reggie McKenzie do, he picked up DE Justin Tuck, Hybrid LB/DE LaMarr Woodley, DL Antonio Smith, DE C.J. Wilson, and re-signed DT Pat Sims.  This to go along with DE Jack Crawford, DE Ryan Robinson, DE Chris McCoy, DT David Carter, DT Ricky Lumpkin, DT Stacy McGee, and DT Torell Troup.

Between DE’s, DT’s, and DL’s, that’s and average of 292 pounds each player.  That’s a lot of weight that the opposing offensive linemen are going to have to face in 2014.  Then, we can factor in the other Hybrid type players, i.e., Kaluka Maiava, Sio Moore, Kevin Burnett, and Miles Burris, and this defense has a lot of potential.  Let’s put it this way, the pundits cans scoff at the moves being made by the Raiders all they want, they are very good moves.  Not to mention that fact that these are incentive based contract players who need to prove their worth in order to make money.

As far as re-signing our own players goes (Green Bay Packers/New England Patriots based models that the NFL pundits believe everyone should follow), none of the major players who were released were McKenzie’s picks.  Jared Veldheer and Lamarr Houston were picked before McKenzie arrived.  Basically, anybody picked in the 2012 NFL Draft and beyond will be considered McKenie’s guys.  Raider Nation doesn’t have to agree with the moves, but there is truth where confusion is found.

The way I see it, the Raiders are building toward a new era featuring a more steady and solid cast of players who actually want to put the time and effort into winning for their team.  A very good cast of characters who will provide a balanced and positive locker room environment for the younger players.  Winners who bring a winning attitude to the table, players with something to prove, and under-dogs who want to show the world they can do the job.

Yes, there are a bunch of pieces missing still, but it’s no longer in complete disarray.  2014 will be a season in which the Raiders regain the confidence and trust from their fans, and they will show the world that the Raiders are back to compete in a division that is being hailed as the toughest in the NFL.  The way I see it, Raider Nation may just bring the Coliseum down with all the cheers from the wins the Raiders have this year.  Maybe it will help with the stadium situation?

Now, I didn’t touch upon the offensive line, defensive backs, wide receivers, tight ends, running backs, or the quarterback situation just yet.  I will offer an opinion to those in the coming segments.  This was just a kick-start in the right direction.  “Just Win Baby” and a “Commitment to Excellence” have always been the Raiders motto, and I believe we, the Raider Nation, will see this happen in 2014.  You may not agree with everything that I say, but this is the way I see it.

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Tags: Justin Tuck LaMarr Woodley Oakland Raiders Pat Sims Reggie McKenzie

  • Shane Schilperoort

    While I am not one to judge a persons use of profanity for I have been known to drop an F-bomb now and again, I would only ask that in the future you refrain from the use of it, or I will be required by Fansided to flag your comments. However, I totally agree with your assessment.

  • raidernation

    True but what about all those retired players that are sport commentarist? And come on they all must read and heard of the raiders hystory they are just a bunch of haters! But I remember when jason Campbell was the qb and they were doing good they all kept their mouths shut and didnt even mention how good they were doing and I cant wait till the raiders shut their asses up again lol

  • Raider Grant

    Oops, yes Dion Jordan. Dolphins apparently shopping him as they aren’t satisfied with his production last season. Believe their looking for draft picks, but never know if they would bite on trade for TP? Jordan could be DE/OLB we need, as he was good at getting to QB in college. Your article blew up with comments, l love it Shane!

  • Mark Shafer

    I am old school too. The Come and Get It video is a lot more personal to me, having been at those games. I was watching it yesterday again!
    That touch down run, by run DMC brings back good memories. As soon as I saw Palmer hand the ball to DMC I could tell it was probable a touch down. The Steelers defense had all stunted right. I jumped to my feet yelling ” here we come “. Then the dive into the end zone right in front of me! TOUCHDOWN RAIIDEEERRRSSSS!

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Well, quite frankly, they have been polluted by their respective teams, and Al Davis did do some damage to some players. A business yes, but damage done nonetheless, and grudges are always held.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    I know right, comments are off the chain. I like it, the more the merrier. I think that would be one hell of a trade, and it may even shut some people up. Doubt it, but always possible.

  • chucka1122

    I agree with most of this article. The Raiders will be much improved next year and I think people are going to get that right away. The only thing I can fault RM on is the draft. He drafted Hayden and Watson in the first 2 rounds last year and got nothing from those players. The third round pick Moore was the best draft pick they made last year. He played very well and was all over the field. I was very disappointed in the production from Hayden and Watson, they absolutely did not live up to their draft status. If the Raiders are going to have success this year, they need a great draft and need to get something out of Hayden and Watson. Those players have a lot to prove to Raider’s fans to show that they were worth their draft position.

  • Mark from Section 122

    I’m really glad to see you regularly writing again brother, solid article. You know my opinion on how to build a team, and an old saying regarding opinions, especially among coaches comes to mind. Opinions are like….well for family friendly purposes, I’ll say…armpits. Everyone has one, and think most everyone else’s stink. I may not agree with the way the Raiders are restructuring, but I’m just hoping Reggie and company HAVE a good plan that they are sticking to and aren’t just throwing darts. And despite my in-house criticisms, I am truly rooting for them and sincerely hoping the plan works. As to the Hater Community in the world of the talking heads in the sports media world….well…I can’t say what I think and still keep it family friendly.

  • Bob Yost

    One hopes so…