Oakland Raiders sign James Jones, seriously improve receiving corps
By Chase Ruttig
Jan 5, 2014; Green Bay, WI, USA; Green Bay Packers wide receiver James Jones (89) is tackled by San Francisco 49ers cornerback Tramaine Brock (26) after catching a pass during the second quarter of the 2013 NFC wild card playoff football game at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
The 2013 Oakland Raiders receivers were hit and miss as the passing game went through three different quarterbacks with various degrees of success as a group of underrated pass catches in Denarius Moore, Rod Streater and Andre Holmes along with tight end Mychal Rivera all had breakout games but failed to find the consistency as expected with a carousel of quarterback partners.
Still the group of Raiders wideouts showed just enough promise in 2013 that it appeared that the Raiders would be out of the WR market during free agency, but Reggie McKenzie made a strong surprise pickup on Monday afternoon bringing in veteran Green Bay Packers playmaker James Jones on a three year deal.
Jones also had interest from the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers, but playing his college ball in California Jones ended up coming back home to play for the Raiders over two teams that may have presented better chances at winning. Entering his thirties Jones has a reputation for being a consistent performer and has never had under 12 yards per catch in his career, a consistent veteran with experience that the Raiders young and raw talents could definitely learn from.
The add on of Jones is another in a string of impressive veteran pick ups from McKenzie that have been easily dismissed by “Raider Haters” as risky moves, but based on the pricetags of high level free agents appear to be very shrewd. Jones has been apart of one of the stronger franchises in the league for years that along with defensive signings Justin Tuck and LaMarr Woodley continue the recent trend of veteran leaders being brought into the fold.
With productive veterans in place for young prospects and incoming draft picks to learn from it appears that a more clear plan is developing out of the Raiders front office, something that will surely ease the minds of Raider fans as they celebrate the Monday signing of Jones after a quieter weekend than expected.