Jun 17, 2014; Alameda, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterbacks Matt Schaub (8) and Derek Carr (4) throw passes at minicamp at Raiders Practice Facility. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Oakland Raiders: QB is the answer to the WR position


Ever read an article that just pissed you off to no extent?  Well, I read one about Oakland Raiders WR Denarius Moore that sent me through the roof.  No, I’m not naming names or websites, but the article was composed very poorly.  There was a lot of blame placed on Moore’s shoulders, with little blame being placed where it was necessary.

Now, I will admit that I am going to tick off some people with this post as well.  I will be discussing the wonderful position of QB that the Oakland Raiders haven’t had for so long, and there are those out there that believed in some of the players that were and are on the roster.  I too found myself believing in players that would never make it, at least not yet, unless they were allowed good enough tutelage from a worthy veteran QB.

The fact is, there are no receivers without a QB.  Let’s face it, if you peer into the past and look at the great receivers of all time, they all have one thing in common, a QB.  Now I’m not saying they had the best QB’s, but the ones these elite receivers had were pretty good (Joe Montana, Steve Young, Ken Stabler, Terry Bradshaw, Johnnie Unitas, Bart Starr, Joe Namath, Bobby Layne, Len Dawson, Jim Kelley, Roger Staubach, Dan Marino, Fran Tarkenton, Brett Favre, John Elway, Otto Graham, Troy Aikman, and Sammy Baugh).  The list of great QB’s was in no particular order, and in some cases I could go on and on with some other names as well.  The point I’m trying to make is simple, without a great compliment to the greatest WR’s, there are no great WR’s.

Currently, there are some great QB’s in the league, some very good QB’s in the league, and then there are the others.  These others are serviceable QB’s that coaches have built a system around, and it works for those particular teams (i.e., Seattle Seahawks, Carolina Panthers, San Francisco 49ers, etc…).  The great ones currently in the game are more than obvious.  These particular QB’s have made the WR’s around them great (i.e., Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, and Ben Roethlisberger).  Then there are the very good QB’s out there who may not have the best team built around them (i.e., St. Louis Rams, Miami Dolphins, Atlanta Falcons, San Diego Chargers, Arizona Cardinals, you get the picture).

Now, I purposely left off the Detroit Lions team to make a point.  The point is, there are times when a team has an extremely good QB (Matthew Stafford) and an elite WR (Calvin Johnson), but they lack the OL to get them to the next level.  Unfortunately for the Lions, this is exactly the case for them.  Although, there are some holes they need to address on defense as well.  In the case of the Lions, it is very clear where the holes are.

In the case of the Oakland Raiders, there were a ton of holes left from a decade of poor decision-making, inflated contracts, etc…  I don’t need to go into this, because Raider Nation is well aware of the problems this team has faced.  Since about 2011 or 2012, this team has been immersed in a rebuilding project that almost feels never-ending at times.  However, it is on the mend.

With this mend comes questions about all positions and players of course, but none more questioned than the QB position.  With a huge following of Raiders fans supporting the ongoing development of Terrelle Pryor, it was no surprise that the decision to bring in Matt Schaub was going to be controversial.  Still, Schaub has proven more to the NFL than Pryor has, and Schaub gives the Raiders that veteran presence so needed at the QB position.  Pryor must have a system built around his particular talents in order for him to have success, and the Raiders weren’t willing to do this.  As in the case of most NFL teams, the Raiders wanted a pocket-passing QB who can be that field-general for the team.  Pryor didn’t fit the bill, and he was traded away.

The same can be said for Matt McGloin.  Although, it is my belief that if McGloin was given the right set of circumstances, he could flourish in the NFL and possibly be a Drew Brees type of player.  He has much to learn, but that’s why a QB needs time to transition from college to the NFL.  McGloin would also need an organization to believe in him, which I don’t think the Raiders do.

In Matt Schaub, the Raiders get a veteran QB who is a pocket-passer, and one who has been very successful.  Yes, his 2013 campaign was very forgettable, but everyone deserves a chance to bounce back.  I truly think that Schaub still has a lot left in his tank, and he has learned from his mistakes.  With this upgraded OL that the Raiders have pieced together through free agency and the draft, Schaub will find the time to make the right decisions and reads.  Already, the Raiders WR’s are ecstatic about how well Schaub throws the ball, and they have been raving about his quick and decisive throws.  The chemistry between QB and WR still needs to be fully forged, but Schaub is very happy with the weapons he gets to throw to.

One of those weapons he so highly speaks about is Denarius Moore.  Moore has a chance to become that same breakout player he showed all of Raider Nation he could be in 2011.  Yes, he has much to prove, but he has natural ability that gives him an edge over most.  The clear number ones are Rod Streater and James Jones, but Moore would thrive in the slot position.  With most teams dedicating their best CB’s to cover Streater and Jones, Moore would usually face a LB, S, or Nickel Corner.  With Moore’s speed, he could find the openings in the defense to get the hard yards (Much like Wes Welker or Julian Edelman do for their respective teams).  It just comes down to how bad he wants it.

Enter in the 2nd draft pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, QB Derek Carr.  Carr has emerged as the number 2 QB headed into Training Camp behind Matt Schaub.  This is a very good spot for Carr to remain through the next couple of seasons, as long as Schaub can regain his winning ways.  This way, Carr can learn and grow to become the QB of the future without the pressure of guiding the team to the playoffs.  I don’t think he is ready to be the number one just yet.  However, if Schaub cannot brush away his interception-throwing 2013 season, then the Raiders have nothing to lose by grooming Carr in the driver’s seat.  Unfortunately, that would mean that Raider Nation will have to endure another up and down season in 2014.  Let’s hope this is not the case.

Where am I going with all of this?  The Oakland Raiders have very good QB’s on the team in Matt Schaub, Derek Carr, and I’ll even lump Matt McGloin in the mix.  This makes for a better team headed into the 2014 Training Camp.  The defense is much improved just in the additions in the off-season along with the offensive line getting an overhaul.  This is a better team headed into Training Camp.  Factor in the WR’s, FB’s (Marcel Reece!), RB’s, and TE’s (Mychal Rivera!), and the Raiders will be competitive in 2014.  The competitive team will grow out of a very competitive and tight race that will flourish in Training Camp.

There are WR’s on the hot seat (i.e., Juron Criner, Greg Jenkins, Andre Holmes, Seth Roberts, Mike Davis, Greg Little, Rashaan Vaughn, and Brice Butler).  Those will be the WR’s that must prove their worth.  Some of them will be best served as Special Teams gurus, and they can be added in on 4 and 5 WR sets.  Yet, there is always a chance for one of them to emerge as a clear starter in Training Camp.  You never know.  Still, the improved QB position will make the WR position better.  I look forward to a great year of Oakland Raiders football.  Go Raiders!

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Tags: Denarius Moore Derek Carr James Jones Matt McGloin Matt Schaub Oakland Raiders Raider Nation Rod Streater

  • Jim Stack

    mcgloin doesn;’t have brees mobility and moore dropped quite a few of mcgloin’s nice passes. He can’t catch a ball with zip on it… that;s why he did best with palmer and pryor

  • KloverJane

    Well you sure outdid yourself, making good points, with the facts my friend. Straight from the horses mouth there has been a maturation issue for Denarius. He needs to get open. But to be fair, our o line didn’t give time for our, “quarterback”, to throw some more accurate passes either. Dare I mention Veldeer being injured…? Thanks for the insightful post.
    Go Raiders!
    P.S. I’m pretty sure that article was on Golden Gate sports…lol.

  • bigninaross

    Great article. I also believe Moore has great potential and this year is a perfect opportunity for him to step up. This upgraded team is exactly what is need for a lot of these players on offense and defense to flourish. Raider Nation! The only nation!

  • Raider Grant

    Word! The two positions complement each other very much so, and our receivers hopefully can shine if Schuab shines; if not it will be another rollercoaster ride season. Carr could prove to be our golden goose if Schaub fails, or he could prove to be a rookie QB not ready for a starting role. I’ll put my hopes on Schaub to fill those shoes for the next couple years until he proves he can’t, hopefully by then Carr takes this team & OWNS IT! Word is Andre Holmes surpassed D-Mo on the depth chart, to include numerous articles rumoring D-Mo is on the out with Raiders??? D-Mo wants it, he better own it ! Go Raiders

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Thanks bigninaross! Definitely a good year to see if Moore can rise to his potential.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Maybe it was, and maybe it wasn’t. I’m not saying!

  • Shane Schilperoort

    I can definitely see Carr rising to the top if he has time to sit back, learn, watch, and grow into an NFL Quarterback. I worry about the Raiders putting him in there too soon, but he could prove me wrong and be the next great. However, my money is on his ability to absorb as much knowledge as possible before being given the reigns.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    From this article all you took was the comments about McGloin? Wow… Well, in my opinion, McGloin has the same size and stature that Brees has. McGloin has always had to prove himself along the way, just like Drew Brees. I stated he was a Brees “like” player, and not Drew Brees himself. It would be amazing for the Oakland Raiders if McGloin grew to be the next coming of Drew Brees, but he has a lot to learn and a lot of things to prove. The biggest question for him will be simple, is this the place he will be allowed to become the starter, or does he need to go elsewhere?

  • p.rob.

    Nice article.. I agree Raiders have a lot of talent.and if Matt S. can get back to proper form this Raiders team will be a Sleeper this season..GO RAIDERS!!!

  • Bob

    As usual I disagree. The Raiders do not have a number one WR or TE. Allen said the Raiders did not address the TE situation this off season. The last two Al Davis scholarship players need to go (Mooree, DMC) for the Raiders to get better. I would love the Raiders to prove me wrong.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    I can always count on you Bob. You are the salt in my sugar or the vinegar in my water. As usual, you are sour as ever, but that’s okay. At least when the Raiders prove you wrong, you will be one of the most excited Raiders fans this year. Maybe you’re like my wife, always negative so the positive seems so much better. I disagree that the Raiders do not have a clear number one WR or TE. I believe that Rod Streater is the number one WR, as he showed last year. His numbers would have been better if the QB’s (McGloin & Pryor) had time to throw, and if both had made quicker decisions. See, there’s a misconception about McGloin and Pryor that a lot of folks in Raider Nation don’t see. Maybe I’m the only one that does, but both of them caused a lot of their own sacks last year. Had either of them progressed through their reads quicker, or had either of them not stared at one receiver the whole way, things would’ve been different in Raider Country. Furthermore, I do believe in Mychal Rivera, and he was picked up last year. Coach Allen says the Raiders didn’t address the TE position, well, I disagree with him. No, they didn’t draft a TE, but they did bring in some beefier ones in Jake Murphy (Utah, 6’4″ 249 lbs.) and Scott Simonson (Assumption, 6’5″ 249 lbs.). Now, the biggest knock on Rivera is his blocking abilities. That’s teachable, and the kid has great hands and natural route running ability. Ausberry is the one I think should’ve been gone last year if not for his injury early on. Nick Kasa and Brian Leonhardt need to step up or ship out. I like both of them, but the Raiders will only be able to carry 3, maybe 4, TE’s this year (one could be good for just Special Teams). Competition will be fierce at that position in Training Camp. Keep smiling Bob, things are looking up in Raider Nation!

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Indeed. A lot does hinge on Matt Schaub returning to his winning ways. Still, there are other pieces in place to make this easier and possible, so I like the Raiders chances of becoming a contender in 2014.

  • Mark Shafer

    I can relate to your feelings about some of these other websites articles about the Raiders. I read a article last week that I really didn’t know what to think. After reading it my thought was ” Wow what a oxygen thief “.
    For the record a oxygen thief is some one who steals perfectly good oxygen that a brain could actually be using.
    Many of these ” authors ” writing about our Raiders are haters. At least they could research a little and spell check comes free with office apps.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    So true, and I was well aware of what an Oxygen Thief is, but thank you for enlightening some of the other readers. I can’t stand the haters, and I am a self-admitted homer for the Oakland Raiders. Although, there are moves I disagree with at times. However, I don’t believe in smearing the good name of the Raiders to make my point. Hey, spell check and grammar check works great. I use it all the time, although, there have been times when a mistake or two or three or four are made by myself as well. I’m not perfect, and I never pretend to be. I just enjoy writing stuff about the Oakland Raiders, and I plan on continuing to do so. Thank you for your comments, and thank you for the Oxygen you exhausted while reading my post, LOL! Go Raiders!

  • Jim Stack

    Shane.. I became bored after the comment of him becoming a drew brees. I believe McGloin is talented, accurate, love his tight spiral and how he drills the ball. However, what makes Drew brees so good and all 5’10″ successful qbs is his footwork… Drew brees goes side to to side better than anyone in NFL while ready to strike. This is a must to create new passing lanes… not to run around but his great sideways feet movement enough to find a lane between the trees (and his angles). McGloin does not possess the lateral feet work…. I’m not talking rolling out…. feet shuffling. Brees glides in and around the pocket like on ice and finds an opening. So when you talk about stature you’re talking height and build and arm… it’s the feet where the difference.

  • Jim Stack

    with that said, Holmes possesses #1 skills. Let’s see how he dedicates himself

  • Shane Schilperoort

    And you don’t think Brees had to learn this? Let’s face it, Brees was a 2nd round pick for San Diego in 2001, and that year he only threw for 221 yards. Brees never reached his full potential until 2006, when Sean Payton picked him up to run the New Orleans Saints offense. With Payton, Brees became a probable Hall of Fame QB. Without Payton, I’m not sure what Brees would have been. Remember, Payton totally molded that offense to fit Brees. McGloin had well over 1000 yards in 2013 his first year as an undrafted free agent. Yet, he didn’t have an offense molded around him. You’re correct in the fact that McGloin has much to learn, but his footwork was years beyond Tyler Wilson’s, Matt Flynn’s, and Terrelle Pryor’s in Training Camp last year. Seeing it first hand in practice is quite interesting, let me tell you. However, I believe he still has a lot of work ahead of him too. There will never be another Drew Brees, just like there will never be another Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Joe Montana, Ken Stabler, Terry Bradshaw, etc… Still, there are QB’s out there that will eventually compare to some of these aces. Just making a comparison, but maybe you’d rather me say he compares more to Doug Flutie? Nothing is ever set in stone, and it’s just an opinion. So sorry you were bored with the rest. Hope I can not bore you in the future.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    I like Holmes. He has awesome size, speed, and natural ability. He needs to dedicate himself to be more consistent at catching footballs. Granted, he didn’t have the best QB’s throwing to him in 2013, but this year he will have Schaub throwing his way. The potential is there for him to become one of the top receivers on the depth chart, but I don’t think he is going to unseat Rod Streater. Streater is dedicated and has improved every year from his undrafted season in 2012. Since Holmes went undrafted in 2011, he has been more of a practice squad journeyman from Minnesota, to Dallas, to New England, and finally Oakland, where he has a chance to be a full-time starter. He must separate himself from the pack, and the only way to do that is to catch all the balls thrown his way. The WR position is in for one heck of a Training Camp competition. It should be interesting.

  • Ecade

    Mcgolin won one game last season and the defense handed him that win with field position , it’s been reported many times that he has a weak arm so not sure where you get he has zip on the ball .. Lets move on and worry about the Qb’s that will help us win and that’s Carr and Schaub ..

  • Jim Stack

    weak arm for throwing deep… zip on the ball does not mean this. An infielder throws with zip on the ball but doesn’t have an outfielders arm. He throws with zip on the ball… ask Moore who has seen (or hasn’t) the ball zipped through his hands many times from McGloin.
    I’ve moved on from him a year ago when I watched his feet work

  • Jim Stack

    Mcgloin isn’t a Doug Flutie type either…. only in height. He’s not a mobile qb like Brees and Flutie. That was my point …Brees moved well from Purdue days.. that’s why he was drafted…

  • Ecade

    My bad your talking about Zip on a 5 yard dig route makes sense , but lets move on from Mcgloin he is not a Starting NFL Qb and he will only play if someone gets injured .. Lets move on ..

  • YL-RaiderFan

    Wow, great job Shane! Well said.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Fine, let’s compare Drew Brees coming out of Purdue to Matt McGloin coming out of Penn State: Brees 40 yard dash time was 4.83 seconds, 20 yard shuttle was 4.21 seconds, and 3-cone drill was 7.09 seconds. McGloin’s 40 yard dash time was 4.86 seconds (.03 seconds difference), 20 yard shuttle was 4.29 seconds (difference of .08 seconds), and 3-cone drill was 7.00 seconds (.09 seconds better than Brees). At McGloin’s Pro-Day, he ran a 4.78 second 40 yard dash (.05 seconds better than Brees). So as you can see, coming out of college they were pretty comparable to one another. The difference, Brees was drafted and McGloin wasn’t. Besides in the 2001 NFL Draft, the only QB worth anything who was drafted before Brees was Michael Vick. Then Brees was drafted, then Quincy Carter, and Marques Tuiasosopo. No other notables at all. In McGloin’s 2013 Draft, the likes of EJ Manuel, Geno Smith, Mike Glennon, Ryan Nassib, Tyler Wilson, and Matt Barkley were chosen. Again, not the best draft classes, but there are QB’s there that have potential to develop into something. My point was simply that McGloin will need to develop to be worth anything in the NFL. I’ll revisit this in about 10 years…

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Thanks, and I always love your banner. Eat, sleep, Raiders!

  • Jim Stack

    put the two together with defenders coming at him where he has to read and move as opposed to seeing and practicing cones for months prior. McGloins draft class for qbs is the worst I’ve ever seen. Not one starter (should be) except maybe Glennon. Tuisasopo would have done better on a team that new what they were doing (west coast, power, west coast, power)

  • Mark Shafer

    What I like about this website is it is Raider fans writing about the Raiders, primarily to read by Raider fans. That is what makes your articles worth reading. Whether I agree with you is not important what is important is that your opinion is based some facts.
    Say you where writing for another website about Phillip Rivers it may be hard to paint a bright future for Ole Duck and Chuck.

  • Bob

    While I appreciate you optimism, you must be watching a different Raider team than I have the last two years. The Raider team I have been watching went 4 – 12 each year for the last two years.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    Yes indeed, duck cause you might get hit in the head by the chuck.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    I am watching a different team than the last two seasons. As a matter of fact, there aren’t many players left from the last two years. In truth, there have been coaching and player changes in the last two years to make improvements so there won’t be a 4-12 season again. Go ahead, be a doubter, but I believe the Raiders will be a competitive team this year, regardless of their tough schedule. Like I’ve said, to be the best, you must compete against the best. This year, the Raiders get to compete against some of the best teams in the NFL. If they compete and prevail this year, there is nothing but up from there. It’s okay to have some optimism Bob. Show some love for the changes. True, nothing matters until the real games start, but be excited about this new year. All that stuff from before is in the past. It’s time to move on and forget about the past…

  • Bob

    Most dramatic turn arounds come with a coaching change. See the Chargers and Chiefs. A roster turn over of 50% a year is not good. Constant QB change is not good. The Raiders are still two drafts away from winning in the playoffs. See SF and Seattle.

  • CognizantImpiety

    The receivers have to *catch* the ball. There were a lot of well-thrown balls that were just plain dropped.

    Bring back the stickum!