Oct 13, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker LaMarr Woodley (56) sacks New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith (7) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

LaMarr Woodley expects playoff push attitude from Raiders


LaMarr Woodley raised some eyebrows during free agency when the former Super Bowl champion with the Pittsburgh Steelers came out and threw down the gauntlet right away, claiming that his new team should have their sights on the biggest prize possible despite a decade plus of missing out on the playoffs.

Woodley said that the Raiders should consider themselves as contenders, and he isn’t ready to back down from his claims.

Woodley once again told the media that the Raiders were a playoff team during OTA’s according to CSN Bay Area’s Scott Bair. Even going as far as breaking down the team’s 2013 season where the Raiders were competitive despite having the most dead cap space of any team in the league as evidence that a more experienced and deep Raiders outfit could content right away.

“People definitely reacted when I said this was a playoff-caliber team,” Woodley said. “That should always be the main objective. If your goal is to go 8-8, I don’t want you on my team. We’re aiming for the top. Anything less is unacceptable.”

“After going back and looking at Raiders games from last year, they were in a lot of close games and couldn’t seal the deal,” Woodley said. “During the offseason, they brought in guys who know how to win. You need that attitude to get to the next level.”

Woodley’s comments definitely opens himself up for ridicule from those who are fond of making cheap jokes about the Raiders struggles, a crowd that is still large in the mainstream media for one reason on another as the “Raiders are terrible” seems to be a staple of light humor attempts by NFL analysts. That doesn’t mean that Woodley isn’t right for suggesting that the Raiders could make a playoff run, after all it wasn’t expected that the lowly San Diego Chargers would make the playoffs last season before they made it all the way to the Divisional Playoffs in 2013.

Whether you agree or disagree with Woodley’s views on the team’s realistic chances this year, you have to like the attitude and intensity the veteran is showing as well as the willingness to stick his neck and reputation on the line for his new franchise. Woodley has accomplished enough in this league that he doesn’t need to go out and make bold comments, but the fact that he is fired up enough about his new team to go ahead and make statements on the team’s abilities to make the playoffs is a promising sign that the veteran still has something to prove and to play for as a Raider.

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  • O Hernandez

    Great attitude, just win baby

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Woodley is one of the many reasons why the Raiders return to excellence in 2014.

  • CognizantImpiety

    DEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE-Fence!

  • raidernation

    Its true , we’ve could of easily won 8-9 games last season if it wasn’t for the defense. Plus for you Lamar Houston lovers , he had the chance to close out at least 2 games but due to his lack of speed the QB got out of the pocket and made a critical play….

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Yup, only 5 sacks. Not eye popping numbers for a guy who was supposed to be a bell cow/superstar

  • James Schroeder

    The new direction we are going in is GREAT. Winners breed winning, and it’s been a long time since the Raiders have have the franchise quarterback, a top defense or pretty much a top anything. We could actually have a real chance to compete next year even with the toughest schedule in the NFL. To be the best you have to beat the best, and I believe our boys are more than up to the task. Man I can’t wait for football.

  • raidernation

    Its exciting u know…. its just with this OTA s anybody can get hurt so its exciting then worrisome….. look @ #SeanLee50

  • Don

    Just like you aside before Shane, quoting Al Davis, “When you have great coaches and a great organization, you get great players and you tell them one thing, Just Win Baby!”

  • James

    I wouldn’t expect any player on any team to feel differently. It is what makes up a winning organization. I love this new breed of raiders football. Somebody was trash talking the Raiders on another blog and used randy Moss as an example saying he “Couldn’t get out of there fast enough”. The thing about Randy Moss is that he was exactly the type of negative player that Al (not to bash on him) spent too much money on in hopes that they could win games for the team but he was not a winner. It took Tom Brady to make him relevant again. The same Tom Brady who turned a Jr College WR into a top starting receiver last year. I love Woodley being openly confident. Get the young guys believing and working like you and there might be a chance you are right!

  • James

    I agree, even if the defense did not get any more talented, adding depth would have won games IMO. the defense played well until they were beat down in most games. Depth and being able to keep guys fresh is a huge part of that. Leadership is another. Woodley brings both plus a guy who still played at pretty much a Pro Bowl level last year. It is funny, Woodley, Tuck, and all the other Raiders free agents are over the hill. But if it was Ray Lewis or somebody on another team they would still be talking about how they contribute off the field and in the huddle and blah blah blah.

  • Raider Grant

    I fully respect comments made by Woodley. All players need to have the attitude of striving to be the best. Once an athlete loses that type of drive/attitude….game over! Hopefully Woodley’s attitude spreads deep within all of our players psyche & we come out firing on all cylinders!!!!! Go Raiders

  • Mike

    I agree that the Raiders are going to be a much improved squad this year. I’ve been a Raider fan since..well since the late 60′s. This squad reminds me more of those early 2000 Raiders. A lot of proven vets, except this time on the defensive side of the ball, whereas back then the vets were more on the O side. BUT, this years schedule is freaking brutal, both in terms of quality of opponents, and in mileage. Add to that an early bye week. Now I know fate is fickle in the NFL. There were a lot of teams last year that were supposed to be contenders that turned out to be soft and vice versa. While it’s great to have that new winning attitude with vets who have done some winning, remember those vets get a little worn down by weeks 12-16. Which isn’t a huge problem if you’re the dominant team in your division and have clinched a spot by week 12 where you can afford to rest some of your vets. But Denver is still going to be the powerhouse of our division and in the BEST CASE scenario the Raiders are going to be battling for a wildcard spot right up through weeks 14-16. That week 5 bye week is gonna hurt toward the end of the season. But I’m excited to see them be competitive.