Sep 15, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders safety Usama Young (94) and linebacker Kevin Burnett (94) celebrate after a tackle against the Jacksonville Jaguars at O.co Coliseum. The Raiders defeated the Jaguars 19-9. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

New Oakland Raiders players look good in Silver and Black


99 days to go until we watch the first football game on television of the 2014 NFL season.  As the excitement builds toward a new start for all of Raider Nation, computer screens and televisions will be filled with video footage of OTA’s, Mandatory Mini-Camp, and Training Camp, before the Pre-Season begins in August.  It’s a new era, and this is truly the first year of the new organization that makes me believe that the Oakland Raiders have a chance to go farther than everybody else is expecting.

If you ask me how far I think the Raiders will go, I will tell you all the way.  However, in reality, I just want a winning season that leads to a playoff berth.  Let’s face it, this is a contract year for Head Coach Dennis Allen.  He either gets this team to the playoffs or he may be seeking employment elsewhere.  General Manager Reggie McKenzie has done wonders with the mess this team was in when he took over, and I don’t see him being released.  Still, it’s a bit early to be talking about firing coaches.

In his interview on camera at the conclusion of OTA’s on Tuesday, Dennis Allen seemed poised, on point, and excited about this season.  He seemed more comfortable than in the past, and I liked the way he addressed the questions.  I have been used to seeing him make the same statements over and over in the past, and it was nice to see him acting like he was more sure of himself.  Granted, I want to see some more fire and intensity on the field during games, but maybe he is like a rookie receiver who needed a couple of years to find his feet.

Our new team looks really good in their Silver and Black jersey’s.  To see Justin Tuck, LaMarr Woodley, James Jones, Matt Schaub, the rookie class, and others out there sporting the Silver and Black definitely sends chills up and down my spine.  The DL is bigger, better, faster, and has a lot of depth, the LB corps is stronger with the addition of Khalil Mack, the WR corps is deeper with talent, the OL is meaty, younger, and more talented, and this looks like a team that is hungry for a playoff berth.

LB LaMarr Woodley was interviewed on Tuesday, and he was asked about his playoff bound Raiders comments.  Woodley stated, “If you ask a player if he thinks his team is going to the playoffs and he says no, then I don’t want that player on my team.  It should be the goal of every player.  That’s what we’re trying to do here in Oakland, change the attitude to a winning attitude.”

Leadership was missing in Oakland.  Leadership has returned with the additions of veterans like Matt Schaub, Justin Tuck, LaMarr Woodley, James Jones, Carlos Rodgers, Donald Penn, etc…  Players who have been to the show, and players who have been on the cusp of a winning season, can teach the younger players to have the right attitude going into the season.  That’s how a team turns its losing ways around.  That’s how a team finishes a game.  The right attitude can make all the difference.

With the Autumn Winds stirring the air of Summer, I believe that Raider Nation can be excited about the upcoming season.  The biggest obstacle the Raiders will face will be health.  After that it’s just football.  I don’t care what the schedule is.  If you want to be a winner, you have to beat the best to get to the top.  Having a winning season with the supposed toughest schedule will quiet all the haters.  There’s no reason why the Raiders can’t beat the teams on the schedule.  It’s football, X’s and O’s, and the hardest working team will win.  That team will be the Oakland Raiders with their new Silver and Black Attack!

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Tags: Dennis Allen Donald Penn James Jones Justin Tuck Khalil Mack LaMarr Woodley Matt Schaub Oakland Raiders Reggie McKenzie

  • bigninaross

    Great article! It has got me even more pumped up than I already was for this season! I agree, our team looks bigger and meaner in all positions this year. I can’t wait for them to be fully suited and coming out on to the field. The shredder face masks are going to look off the hook also! I wish they could do them in all black, but I’m sure there are NFL uniform regulations against that. I think Al would love this team based on looks and intimidation factor alone ha ha! #RaiderNation #ALLIN #TheOnlyNation

  • KloverJane

    Since I have thousands of flight hours. I can’t see jet lag as an excuse. I always read about that one on some biased news agency. Usually the AP whines about it. Speaking from experience, a 5 hour flight back east is a ridiculous 3 hour time zone difference.
    It’s 8 hours different BST, in London. For the one game. The Autumn wind cometh!

  • George Kosich

    Great teams don’t give a hoot WHAT THEIR SCHEDULE IS or get nervous because THEY HAVE A LONG FLIGHT TO AN EASTERN TIME ZONE! Great teams are confident that they can BEAT ANYBODY, ANYWHERE! Never heard excuses from the old Packers, Raiders, 49ers, etc. They simply “kicked butt” and brought home super bowl trophies! The Raiders of 2014 must do the same. I wonder how many excuses old VINCE LOMBARDI would have put up with!?

  • Shane Schilperoort

    All black would be cool, but there is always a part of me that loves tradition, and the Silver facemask is tradition.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    They just need to finish the game, and there is depth in place to do so. The hardest thing to come is cutting players down to 53. Tough choices will have to be made.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    None! He’d of said, “What the hell is going on out there!” The players would have shut their mouths and won the game! That’s what needs to happen in Oakland. Win their games and shut the critics up!

  • bigninaross

    Yes, very true!

  • bigninaross

    Very tough indeed….

  • Jaime Olguin

    Shane every time I read your articles, I come
    away fired up excited with hope and optimism
    and I too have all the faith in the world for this team and coaching staff, thank you and
    win lose or tie raiders till we die

  • KloverJane

    That sounds like something Bucky Brooks would say lol.

  • Scoobz

    All chrome like the Bucs new mask would top them all!

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Interesting…

  • Shane Schilperoort

    That’s how I roll… Have to have the faith, and I am really fired up this year. More so than the last two years, but I could see the need to make changes after the passing of Al Davis. Loved Al, don’t get me wrong, but it was time to move forward and stop falling backward. Reggie has the ship moving forward again, and it should reflect on the field. Besides, look at the smiles on the players faces, they all have them…

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Scary, I know, but true nonetheless. Still, the fire is there, and as you say so eloquently each time, The Autumn Winds cometh…

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Of course, I could have said a quote from the great Al Davis, “When you have great coaches and a great organization, you get great players and you tell them one thing, Just Win Baby!”

  • Scoobz

    Interesting for sure! Google images of Tampa bay Bucs new face mask and tell me what you think

  • Don

    Put Duck Tape on all these so call “experts”, especially Damon Bruce on our flagship station

  • Ecade

    The team was 8-8 with a Top Ten Offense and Top 5 Running game when Reggie took over, not that bad we had a few contracts that were a mess but the team was 8-8 with a Top 10 Offense until Reggie fired Head Coach/Offense Coordinator Hue Jackson and Hired DA and what did DA do change a Top 10 Offense scheme from power to zone go from 8-8 to 8-24 , not to mention he is a Defense coordinator and our defense has not been close to the Top 20 since he became head coach, however the Raiders are on the upswing now and Reggie has done a good job this Off season so lets see how this plays out .. .

  • Raider Grant

    Everything looks better in SLIVER & BLACK……especially the Raideretts! Ditch white jerseys, for black on black ones???

  • Shane Schilperoort

    All true, but did you know that there was a rift between McKenzie and Jackson, because Hue Jackson thought he was slated to be the next GM of the Raiders, before Al Davis died of course. When Jr. Davis hired McKenzie as GM, Jackson resented it. Releasing/firing Jackson had to be done. Yes, the team was 8-8, but at what cost? The loss of 1st round draft pick for Carson Palmer (Who didn’t pan out by the way). The contracts are what killed the Raiders. Couldn’t pay to keep the big names without losing out on up and comers/depth players. That’s why the Raiders were in a pickle. Clean up was necessary. You’re right, it’s on the upswing. Time to be in it for the long haul, not just the short and narrow.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Especially me, LOL!!!!!

  • Ecade

    Amy trask consulted with a few Raider Alumni including Madden before she signed off on the Deal Jackson didn’t sign off on the deal , I do know Hue Personally and have never heard of him being the next GM or anything like that this was his first year of head coach ..

  • Glenn

    Love it!

  • Shane Schilperoort

    This is something you are obviously very passionate about. I don’t know Hue Jackson or Amy Trask and can’t really comment on that matter other than what I’ve heard. Mine are more like verified rumors I guess. Anyways, the unfortunate thing is there was turnover within the organization due to the death of Al Davis. No matter what happened before or directly after his death, there was no changing it. I am still very pissed off over the whole Al Davis and Jon Gruden thing, but that will never change or become what I wish it would have either. I wish Hue Jackson all the luck on his new endeavor as the OC of Cincinnati. I believe things are changing for the better in Oakland, and I hope the team can change your mind about the direction it has taken this year. I’m not the biggest fan of Dennis Allen either, but if he can get the job done, then I’m sure I will start to believe.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Somebody is getting his serial on…

  • Ecade

    I hope DA can get the job done , nice talking to you have a good one .. Raiders…

  • Reggie Mac

    Hey Shane – So you think that if Coach Dennis Allen doesn’t get the #Raiders to the playoffs this season, you’d like – yet another – Raider Head Coach fired? It’s people like you that love watching that coaching carousel go round and round, I suppose. That approach has worked really well in the past.

    In fact, what have eight (8) different head coaches in this millennium alone, achieved for The Silver and Black?

    Coach Allen won 4 games last season with ten (10) rookies on the active roster and a rash of injuries that decimated the team. In spite of the fact that he lacked the necessary depth – Coach Allen continued to rally the troops week-in and week-out. I believe that’s what Al Davis meant when he coined the phrase “Pride and Poise”.

    Take THAT into account and the Raiders’ coaching staff and players did one helluva job last season. The least we can do, is provide the man an Opportunity to Cultivate a Winning Culture.

    #CommitmentToExcellence

  • Shane Schilperoort

    First and foremost, no… I do not wish to go through another coaching carousel. I do think, however, that Allen needs to start proving he can handle the job. I agree with you about the Rookies, and I believe he was handed a poor poker hand along with Reggie McKenzie. However, there are no more excuses left after this season. If he goes 4-12 again, then I don’t believe he deserves another shot, not with this team. I hope this doesn’t happen, but if it does, I think the Raiders should give Jason Tarver a shot at the job. He reminds me of Jon Gruden. Still, I do believe in the coaching staff in place as of right now, and I want to see it succeed. Lose, and the obvious has to happen, football is a business. Win, and the Raider Nation will be behind him all the way.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    So do I, so do I. Thank you for offering your opinion and knowledge into this matter. I really enjoy conversing with all football fans, but especially with Raiders fans. Keep it coming, and call me into check when I get something wrong. I can handle it.

  • Reggie Mac

    Seriously doubt that will happen. This will be the third year of a five-year plan for the current administration (coaches and front-office personnel alike). The coaching carousel was the Al Davis approach. Like you stated – Reggie is the Captain of the Ship now, and he will provide Coach Allen the necessary support, tools and players needed to turn the franchise around.

    With that being said – Coach Allen will not disappoint and will prove to the NFL and the Raider Nation – that Reggie Mac made the correct hire. Stay tuned. I’M ALL IN!

  • Bob

    Once you go Silver & Black you can’t go back…

  • Silvia Arredondo

    There’s going to be a new thing happening when QBs face our defense…its going to be called the “Mack Tuck!” Tuck for your lives Mack and Tuck are coming! Lol

  • Raider Grant

    Fully agree my Raider Nation Brother ! There is no sense in doing things wrong just to say were are doing thing differently. No more excuses, put up W’s, or pack.your bags Allen. Anyone could obtain success if allotted enough time & that’s NOT how big business operates. Provide results or you recognition! Go Raiders

  • Raider Grant

    Tampa Bay is the NFL & NFC’s version of The Raiders ! They basically rippped off Our image & now you suggest we copy them??? Raider Nation 4 Life!

  • Mark from Section 122

    Well said, and you know I totally agree that this should be Allen’s last shot. He needs to put on his big boy pants and prove he’s a legit head coach in the NFL.

  • Mark from Section 122

    Neither Pride nor Poise would be proper adjectives to explain anything Dennis Allen has done since taking the reins of the team. He has done NOTHING to be proud of, and has the poise of a 14 year old ball-boy. He is absolutely the worst Raiders head coach since Norv Turner or Lane Kiffin. (Art Shell and his dismal 2-14 doesn’t count for this analogy, because he actually did better in his first run). He does not inspire, lead, or breed any type of confidence. He is a boy among men. You are completely deluded if you give him any credit for what he did with the talent he had in the last two seasons. The Raiders were actually improving before he got here and had gone from the bottom of the barrel to 8-8 two years in a row, nearly making playoffs.