Oakland Raiders Offensive Line Now a Strength

6 of 7

Nov 24, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions defensive end Ezekiel Ansah (94) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers tackle Donald Penn (70) during the game at Ford Field. Tampa Bay won 24-21. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Donald Penn

That couple of years is the amount of time Donald Penn has left as a solid-to-elite left tackle in the NFL. At 6’5″, 350 pounds, as my Dad used to say, (God rest his soul) “That boy is big enough to go bear huntin’ wit’ a switch!” And speaking of bear, Penn is what Jamie Dukes of NFL Network describes as a “dancing bear” when talking about a top left tackle. Many in Raider Nation were upset when Jared Veldheer, who’s pretty good himself, left in free agency. But when the Raiders were able to pick up Penn, it turned out to be an upgrade to the left tackle. When healthy, he is a road grader in the running game and one of the top pass protectors in the NFL  at the same time. He had a bad year playing with injuries but I fully expect him to be back to his 2012 Top-100 football player form. That’s because I asked my camp eyes, Tafur personally via twitter how he was doing and he said, “Very well.” Penn being back to his old self completes the offensive line as one that will open up holes as well as protect the passer.