Nov 17, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Oakland Raiders receiver Andre Holmes (18) is defended by Houston Texans cornerback Brandon Harris (26) at Reliant Stadium. The Raiders defeated the Texans 28-23. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Oakland Raiders WR Breakdown: Andre Holmes

When you’re looking for that perfect WR body, you want height above 6 feet, speed (40 yard dash to be under 4.7 seconds), and weight to be right around 200-220 pounds (depending on height).  Hands are a must, but this is a skill that can be honed if a player is willing to dedicate themselves fully.  So, it was no surprise when the Oakland Raiders signed Andre Holmes in the off-season of 2013.

Holmes stands 6’4″ tall and weighs in at 210 pounds.  As far as body parameters go, he is nearly a mirror image to Randy Moss.  He attended Hillsdale College in Michigan, which is a small school according to NFL standards.  Holmes set several school records during his Junior and Senior years with 181 catches, 2,444 yards, and 17 touchdowns.  Unfortunately, he was not drafted in 2011 due to his small school status.  Holmes was signed by the Minnesota Vikings and spent Training Camp with them before being released in late August.  He was signed to the Dallas Cowboys practice squad on September 5, 2011, before being activated to the active roster in December of 2011.

Holmes spent part of the 2012 season on the Dallas Cowboys active roster before being demoted to the practice squad in November of 2012.  Holmes was waived by the Cowboys at the end of the 2012 season, and he was signed by the New England Patriots practice squad in January of 2013.  On May 10th of 2013, the Patriots released Holmes on the coat tails of his Performance Enhancing Drug test that came back positive.  Although Holmes was staring at a suspension in 2013, the Oakland Raiders took their chances with Holmes and signed him on May 13th of 2013.


Nov 10, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Oakland Raiders wide receiver Andre Holmes (18) and Oakland Raiders linebacker Kaelin Burnett (95) celebrate after Holmes recovered a Giants fumble on the opening kick against the Oakland Raiders at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: William Perlman/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports

Andre Holmes (#18)-

Now entering the 2014 season, Andre Holmes has a chance to re-invent himself into a starting lineup with the Oakland Raiders.  His 25 catches for 431 yards and 1 touchdown came late as he had to serve out his NFL suspension.  However, this was accomplished in 10 games and he averaged 16.4 yards a reception.  I don’t know about you, but I think that’s pretty good for a #4 and #5 receiver on the depth chart.  Let’s face it, the Raiders sea-sawed between Brice Butler and Andre Holmes to be their 4th behind Jacoby Ford, Denarius Moore, and Rod Streater in the 2013 regular season.

Now, with the release of Ford and the addition of James Jones, the Raiders will once again be searching for a new receiver lineup before entering the 2014 season.  This is why I say that Andre Holmes has the chance to re-invent himself into the starting lineup.  He’s been putting in the work, that’s for sure.  This off-season he was among a handful of Oakland Raiders receivers that immediately began meeting with newly signed Matt Schaub to start gelling.  The biggest problem he will face, there is some new blood in the way, and he must separate himself from Denarius Moore.

James Jones and Rod Streater are almost guaranteed a starting position.  After that, it will be a battle in Training Camp between Andre Holmes, Denarius Moore, Brice Butler, Greg Little, Greg Jenkins, Juron Criner, Mike Davis, Seth Roberts, and Rashaan Vaughn.  The Raiders will more than likely keep six or seven WR’s on the starting roster, maybe eight if they are the better Special Teams returners.  That’s a good chunk of the 53-man roster.

Is Holmes the diamond in the rough type of player who can become one of the best?  He certainly has the body for it, and his game speed is faster than his 40 yard dash time (4.51).  Still, Larry Fitzgerald posted a 4.63 40 yard dash time in his combine if that helps to tell you anything.  Being able to get above the defensive backs in the NFL is a huge plus, and Holmes can jump.  If he and Schaub can click and find a way to be cohesive enough to get their timing down, Holmes could prove to be that necessary piece that gets the tough first downs and back of the end-zone touchdowns.

Holmes could definitely prove to be a worthy #3 or even #2 receiver (James Jones in the slot, maybe), as long as he continues to grow as a professional.  This means long days and evenings spent catching passes, running routes, studying route trees, etc…  Does he want it bad enough?  That is the question.  Training Camp and Pre-Season football will be the proving ground for Andre Holmes this year, and I for one hope that he shows the ability to catapult himself up the depth chart.  I also believe that Holmes has the backing from Raider Nation, and that is a huge plus for him too.

So, Raider Nation, enjoy some of his highlight film below, and let’s all wish Holmes the best as he attempts to make yet another NFL lineup:

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  • Aethelred

    I am worried that the hype surrounding Holmes is beginning to get overheated. He had some nice moments last season, but a handful of highlight-reel grabs do not an NFL starter make. There is obviously a reason that he was cut from two teams, neither of which was exactly overflowing with talented receiver depth, prior to us scooping him up. He definitely has the physical attributes to be a very good player; so do hundreds of guys that never stick in the league. I absolutely hope Holmes comes through, but let’s wait until the season actually starts to get all googly-eyed over him.

  • Raider Grant

    Raiders are fortunate to have multiple receivers who can go up to get the ball, but who is going to step up & take that lead role? Holmes needs to RISE above & separate himself from Moore to secure a roster spot in my opinion. He’s more then capable, just have to pad up to see who rises above who. The Raiders have better receivers then given credit for, they just need to prove it now! Go Raiders!!!

  • Jim Stack

    I thought he showed a lot last year…. made big mistake but I think he’ll rebound from this. Dallas also cut Amendola… so much for their coaching.

  • Aethelred

    And he has caught a total of nine TD’s in five seasons. He had two last year with Tom Brady throwing to him. A lobster could do that. He has also averaged 43 yd/game over his career. Reece has 23 per game as fullback who is not even used properly. And the Eagles also cut Amendola; their passing game seems OK.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    I don’t think he has been hyped up too bad, but there is a huge following for him through Raider Nation. This guy is pretty humble and ready to take the next step, and I think Raider Nation, I know I am, is behind him to do so. He has a lot to prove and show before he can be elevated, and Training Camp will be his proving ground.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    I think the Raiders are in a very good position with the amount of WR’s they have, but it will be very hard to make cuts. It will also be hard to watch some of these guys go to.

  • Shane Schilperoort

    He came on late in the season, and he made some rookie mistakes for a guy who has been a journeyman in the NFL. Still, he hasn’t had much playing time, and these mistakes are expected. It’s how he bounces back, that’s how we can judge him.

  • Jim Stack

    he was out most of the year last year… unfortunately, previously he had Bradford.

  • Aethelred

    Yes. And it was not the first time he missed huge stretches of a season due to injury. I don’t think prolonged periods spent in street clothes is not something that the Cowboys will regret passing on, but then again, you never know what Jerry Jones is thinking. He did just trade for Rolando, so clearly he values shockingly poor attitude and inadequate fitness to make it through a single practice in his middle linebackers.

  • Jim Stack

    Rolando will retire again as soon as they ask for a urine sample

  • Aethelred

    Yeah, but Garrett doesn’t usually do that until the fifth date – he is a stickler for etiquette. That’s why they always finish 8-8; it’s polite to keep half for yourself and share the other half with others. And since there are no doors on a football field, nor women to open them for, his defense instead opens gigantic lanes for ballcarriers. When I hearprim and proper, Rolando “Regal” McClain is the first name I think of.

  • Jim Stack

    I remember first hearing about McClain’s “assault” and my first thought was I’ve never seen him hit anyone!

  • Shane Schilperoort

    LOL, that’s funny right there!