Discussion in 'Game Summaries & Team News' started by RVallee, Aug 7, 2014.
LT Jared Veldheer (88 ovr)
DE Lamarr Houston (89 ovr)
RG Mike Brisiel (FA)
CB Tracy Porter (77 ovr)
CB Mike Jenkins (77 ovr)
QB Matt Schaub (78 ovr)
RT Austin Howard (81 ovr)
LT Donald Penn (82 ovr)
DE LaMarr Woodley (87 ovr)
DE Justin Tuck (88 ovr)
CB Tarell Brown (86 ovr)
HB Maurice Jones-Drew (86 ovr)
CB Carlos Rogers (81 ovr)
DT Antonio Smith (87 ovr)
Round 1 - LB Khalil Mack - Buffalo
87 spd 91 acc 87 agi 80 tak 90 pmv 84 bks 72 prc 74 zcv 87 pow 91 pur
Mack is a beast, easily the BPA at this pick, some had him rated as the #1 player overall. Mack can cover the entire field, and does everything well, from coverage to playing the run to rushing the passer. Day one starter.
Round 2 - QB Derek Carr - Fresno State
80 spd 83 acc 93 thp 86 sac 74 mac 68 dac 65 pac 57 awr
The Raiders had Carr rated quite high on their boards, many teams had a first-round grade on him. More mobile than given credit for, and a pure passer, Carr has natural ability but will need to improve a bit on the deep ball, and decision making. Will push Schaub for starting job.
Round 3 - RG Gabe Jackson - Mississippi State
91 str 75 acc 53 awr 92 rbk 76 pbk 66 ibk
The Raiders took Jackson to start in the near future at Guard. Big and strong, improving pass blocking is a must for Jackson before he breaks the starting lineup.
Round 4 - DT Justin Ellis - Louisiana State
83 str 46 awr 77 pmv 84 bks
Depth pick and possible future starter, Ellis dominated through college though at a small school.
Round 4 - CB Keith McGill - Utah
89 spd 89 acc 46 awr 65 prc 76 mcv 84 zcv 87 prs
The Raiders needed secondary help in this draft, and after a 4th round run on Cornerbacks, the Raiders select McGill with their second 4th rounder. McGill needs some grooming but should be able to contribute a bit right away. Plays huge at 6'3"and as a bonus has experience at safety as well.
Round 7 - CB TJ Carrie - Ohio
93 spd 92 acc 91 agi 46 awr 59 prc 97 jmp 73 mcv 80 zcv 84 prs
Round 7 - DE Shelby Harris - Illinois State
74 spd 80 acc 77 pmv 76 bks
Round 7 - SS Jonathan Dowling - Western Kentucky
90 spd 87 acc 49 awr 39 prc 75 mcv 76 zcv
DRAFT GRADE: B+
Mack is a home run obviously. You can bet nearly every NFL team takes him at #5 if he's there. I believe the overall success of this draft depends on two things. First, Derek Carr, and his success as an NFL Quarterback. Carr looks to have all the tools and many would agree he'll be just fine. But then you can't help compare him to his brother, David Carr, who went #1 overall to the Houston Texans but never was able to amount to much. The Raiders need a franchise Quarterback, Schaub is just a stop-gap. They need Carr to be good. And second, I want to see how the two 4th round guys, Ellis and McGill, fare in the NFL. They say championships are won in the draft, and I think nowadays it's moreso LATE in the draft, when you get contributions from guys, potentially guys like Ellis and McGill, to help the team succeed. Schaub is a stop-gap, but really I think the Raiders entire Free Agency was a stop-gap. Don't get me wrong, they got some solid players, but with an average age of 31 for the big name signings, the turnover will be fast with these guys. And it's Ellis and McGill that will be their to retool.
Very interested to see how Carr will progress. Personally, I think he's a diamond in the rough.
Oakland Raiders Team Outlook 2014
The sexiest question of the season, who is going to start for the Raiders? Matt Schaub is the pitcher who's lost his control. A proven, capable NFL quarterback, but castoff from the Texans after a spiraling season last year, the biggest question with Schaub is a question of confidence. Derek Carr is the future, and one with a ton of potential. The question with Carr is, should the future start now?
Projection: Derek Carr
Darren McFadden is the starter, but this will be a platoon all year. McFadden's injury issues are always a concern, and Maurice Jones-Drew will push for a good chunk of touches a game, especially if he can recapture some of his "MoJo". Latavius Murray is looked at as the future of the position, so he will get some work as well.
Projection: Darren McFadden
Marcel Reece is one of the more dynamic fullbacks in the league. He's lined up practically everywhere for the Raiders in the past, and can be a mismatch nightmare wherever he's put. The question here is whether Jamize Olamale can keep a roster spot. The Raiders like his skill set, specifically as a blocker, but keeping two fullbacks on roster is practically unheard of.
Projection: Marcel Reece
A solid group. Denarius Moore has the talent to be a number one receiver, only lacking in consistency. Former Packer James Jones is the defintion of consistency, and is a welcome veteran presence to the otherwise young WR squad. Rod Streater really came into his own towards the end of last season and will most likely rotate equally with Jones and Moore. Greg Little gets a try at a new start in Oakland, and will fight youngsters Brice Butler and Andre Holmes for the 4th spot.
Projection: James Jones, Denarius Moore, Rod Streater, Andre Holmes
David Ausberry is ultra-athletic, but has struggled to stay on the field with injuries. Mychal Rivera disappointed a bit his rookie year, as did Nick Kasa. It could be the Raiders only carry two tight ends on roster, having the verstile Marcel Reece to use, or even to use the extra roster spot to keep Olamale.
Projection: David Ausberry, Mychal Rivera
A bit of turnover here, Donald Penn will replace Jared Veldheer at LT. All-Pro Center Stefan Wisniewski is back, but both Guard spots are up in the air, and are likely a weak spot on the line. 3rd Round pick Gabe Jackson may have to start right away. A good battle will be had in camp for the RT position, as Austin Howard was signed to challenge last years starter Malik Watson.
Projection: Donald Penn, Kevin Boothe, Stefan Wisniewski, Gabe Jackson, Austin Howard
An almost completely retooled line, 3 of the 4 starters on the line are Free Agent pickups, and are looked at as definite improvements. The bad part is, they are all 31 years of age or older. Antonio Smith will slide inside to DT after playing 3-4 DE at Houston. LaMarr Woodley moves to DE after playing 3-4 OLB at Pittsburgh. Add Justin Tuck at the other DE spot to join DT Pat Sims and you have a solid front. No depth here though whatsoever.
Projection: Justin Tuck, Pat Sims, Antonio Smith, LaMarr Woodley
Bread and butter. Possibly the strongest position on the team. Khalil Mack looks to be the real deal. Sio Moore will have a season under his belt and should grow a bit in this defense. Their will be a position battle at the MLB spot, as Miles Burris will be pushing last years starter Nick Roach. A very versatile group, these are fast linebackers who can both rush the passer, and cover the field.
Projection: Sio Moore, Miles Burris, Khalil Mack
Tarell Brown was an excellent pickup. He played well with the 49ers in his time there, he crosses the Bay to be the #1 Corner. He brings vet Carlos Rogers with him, who most likely will see time mostly in Nickel packages, as DJ Hayden will be Corner #2. They'll look to develop rookie Keith McGill, and keep your eye on Chimidi Chekwa, who seems to have a great camp every year, maybe this is finally the one that translates to the regular season.
Projection: Tarell Brown, DJ Hayden, Carlos Rogers, Keith McGill
Charles Woodson is back for another season. He was great in his new role last year, and there's no reason to think he won't be anything but again this year. He is 38 years old though, so keep that in mind, as there is not alot of depth here beyond Woodson and Strong Safety Tyvon Branch.
Projection: Charles Woodson, Tyvon Branch
Janikowski is back and slimmer than ever, giving the Raiders two cannons in him and Punter Marquette King. Returner is undecided, though former Running Back turned Cornerback Taiwan Jones had gotten the most reps in OTA's.
Projection: Sebastian Janikowski, Marquette King, Taiwan Jones
RAIDERS NAME STARTER AT QB
Following months of speculation around Raiders camp, the guessing game is over as the Oakland Raiders have announced that rookie 2nd rd pick Derek Carr will be the starter at QB Week 1 against the NY Jets. It could be a decision for the Raiders that once again will be met with some skeptisim, mainly because the Raiders traded their 6th round pick to the Texans to acquire Schaub, and at the time he was deemed the "face of the franchise" for the next 3-4 years.
Unfortunately for Schaub, his face only lasted 3-4 months.
On the flip side, if you break the numbers down, it seems pretty unwise to not give the reigns to Derek Carr.
Matt Schaub - 33yrs old. - $ 8m cap figure
84 THP - 85 SAC - 75 MAC - 79 DAC - 72 TOR - 65 PAC - 60 SPD - 55 ACC
Derek Carr - 23yrs old. - $ 976k cap figure
93 THP - 86 SAC - 74 MAC - 68 DAC - 75 TOR - 65 PAC - 80 SPD - 83 ACC
Now that the #1 spot is settled, it will be time to focus on the backup QB spot, as it is not that far out of the realm of possibilities that Schaub could lose the backup spot to 2nd year man Matt McGloin, who has once again had a solid OTA and camp. It would be tough enough for the Raiders to pay their backup QB 8 million dollars this season.
Is it paper bag time already?
The Raiders lose in a big way, being shutout by the Jets in New York, 27-0. The Raiders offense, which many had hoped would be much improved, looked like a junior varsity team. They managed just 22 offensive plays, which is striking in comparison to the NFL average, which is 64 offensive plays per game. And those 22 plays only gained a measly 81 yards.
Derek Carr ended his debut 7/18, which is actually good considering he started the game 1/7, with 72 yards and an interception. He was also sacked 3 times. Much of the credit should go to the Jets, who confused the young QB with some nice blitz packages and were able to stuff the run game early.
The lone bright spot had to be rookie first round pick Khalil Mack, who led the Raiders with 6 tackles, had a sack and an interception in his rookie debut. The Raiders defense didn't look quite as bad as the offense did, and despite the 27 points given up, it was a rather close game until late second half, when Jacoby Ford out-leaped Tyvon Branch for a deep pass and TD. The Jets played a very ball-control offense, and the Raiders struggled to get off the field on 3rd down. Geno Smith made smart 3rd down passes and also ran for 3 first downs himself.
The Raiders will face the 0-1 Texans in an interesting Clowney vs Mack battle.
The MJD experiment appears to be over in Oakland, after the Raiders have announced they have released veteran HB Maurice Jones-Drew after just 2 games. MJD has been on somewhat of a decline, posting two sub-par seasons in Jacksonville, after a great, All-Pro start to his career there. He signed with the Raiders this offseason, but struggled through training camp and the preseason, and ran for just 34 yards on 10 carries in the first two games of the season. The Raiders have promoted HB Jonathan Dwyer from the practice squad to take Jones-Drew's place on the roster. Coach RV says Dwyer will suit up against the Patriots in New England, but expects to see limited action.
The running back carousel continues to spin in Raider land today, as the Raiders have released HB Jonathan Dwyer. Dwyer made news this week after reports of domestic violence and child abuse came about from two seperate incidents dating back to July. Dwyer was called up from the practice squad two weeks ago after the Raiders released Maurice Jones-Drew and promoted Darren McFadden to starter. Dwyer ran the ball 15 times for 50 yards in his two appearances, and scored the only Raiders rushing TD of the season so far. Owner RV released this statement earlier today:
"The charges brought up against Jonathan are disturbing, to say the least, and there is no place in life, let alone football, for actions such as the ones alleged against Jonathan. At this time we wish Jonathan the best and hope these things are not proven to be truthful, but at this time we cannot keep him on the team, and will let the justice system take it's course."
The Raiders announce they have signed former Detroit Lion running back Mikel LeShoure. LeShoure was a 2nd round pick by the Lions in the 2011 NFL Draft. LeShoure had 807 career rushing yards and 9 TD's in 17 games with the Lions before being released at the end of preseason this year.
Week 6 finally brought the first divisional matchup of the season for the Raiders. The Chargers came in with a 4-1 record and sole ownership of first place in the AFC West. They did not look that way to start the game. It was an ugly slugfest for most of the first, second and third quarter. Near the end of the 3rd quarter, Tyvon Branch picked off Phillip Rivers, his 3rd interception on the day, and took it to the house to give Oakland a 17-6 lead and the way the game had been going, it almost appeared to seal the deal.
There was no sealing however, as that seemed to awaken the Chargers offense. Rivers, who at that point was 4/14 for 34 yards and 3 ints, put together a solid drive, with a heavy dose of Ryan Mathews, who was able to punch it in for a TD. Two pt conversion failed and it was Raiders ball. The Chargers were able to force a punt, and got the ball back with just under 5 minutes remaining. A controversial Roughing the Passer call gave the Chargers life and the ball at the 13yd line. Controversial at least, to the Raiders head coach, who had declined (stupidly) a number of Delay of Game penalties and a Roughing the Passer call throughout the game. The Chargers scored on another Mathews run with just 34 seconds left, possibly the perfect drive to end the game on, and complete the 2pt conversion to boot.
Coach RV refused to comment after the game, then stated "Never again." seemingly randomly, but we can only assume it is in reference to the penalty calls. The Raiders drop to 2-3 on the season, and face a tough upcoming schedule, first hosting the 3-2 Cardinals before going on the road for "Commissioner's Row" at Cleveland, and then at Seattle. On the injury front, FS Charles Woodson tore his groin and left in the 4th quarter. Woodson is expected to miss 3 weeks, and could possibly be back Week 9 at Seattle. Usama Young is expected to start in Woodson's place.
REASONS TO BELIEVE:
Derek Carr - He looks pretty good. I'm hesitant to say REALLY good, but I kind of feel he does. You have to remember he's a rookie
starter in the NFL, and that shows. But there is no doubt he has an NFL arm. He makes NFL-type throws. He's even shown
some moxie in the clutch (vs NE) and has a shootout under his belt (vs MIA). It's a bit reminiscent of when Matthew Stafford was drafted
by the Lions. He looked like a rookie, but he was obviously the most talented quarterback the Lions had seen on their own team
in a long time. That is Derek Carr to the Raiders. If and when he finds some consistency, look out.
Rod Streater - The Raiders have not had much success in the NFL Draft in recent years, but Streater defys all logic, as he went
undrafted, and signed with Oakland immediately following the 2012 NFL Draft. You could argue that Streater is a Top 5 WR out
of that draft class, with names like Alshon Jeffery, Michael Floyd, TY Hilton and Kendall Wright. Only Guard Tony Bergstrom remains on the team
from the Raiders draft that year, just two years ago.
REASONS FOR CONCERN:
Running Game - It was supposed to be a much-improved piece to the puzzle this season. The signing of MJD to go along with McFadden. That didn't work out. MJD was dropped and Jonathan Dwyer was added. He was arrested for domestic violence in the midst of Ray Rice and AP debacles and was let go. In comes Mikel LeShoure, who was scrapped from the Lions. The Raiders backs look like they're trying to run
through brick walls with every carry. The offensive line is just not creating room to run. The Raiders are averaging just 47 yards
rushing a game through 5 games, good for 25th in the NFL. That just won't cut it, and also does not help their rookie QB at all.
Pass Rush - Non-existant would probably be the best way to describe it. New Coach RV really looked to build an edge-rush 4-3 defense.
They brought in veteran free agent DE's Justin Tuck and Lamarr Woodley, and made a big splash trade with the Seahawks to acquire
Cliff Avril. And through 5 games the Raiders have just 6 sacks, and none of them have come from the aforementioned defensive ends.
This game would not have won any beauty pageants, but for any defense lover out there, this one was gorgeous.
-Derek Carr looking like a young Trent Dilfer, managing the game with an efficient 11/14 passing and 143 yards.
-Pass rush on both sides, though Oakland never hit home, timely blitzing from the LB's forced hurried throws by
Wilson, and Seattle's rush was ever present with Bruce Irvin and Bobby Wagner both recording sacks.
-The Raiders finding a running game against the #1 statistical defense in the league.
- Two missed Field Goals, one by each team.
- Both the Raiders and Seahawks turning the ball over inside the opponent's 5 yard line. Kam Chancellor forced a fumble on
a Darren McFadden run at the 2 yard line, and recovered it himself. McFadden, who was having possibly his best game of the
season, was benched the rest of the game. The 'Hawks came on a Tyvon Branch interception in the endzone, and Branch was
off to the races, returning it 100 yards for the TD.
Mid-Season Q&A with Raiders beat writer RV.
At 3-5, is this about where you expected the Raiders to be at the halfway point this season?
Yes, for the most part. If I'd have claimed this team was destined for the playoffs before the season, I'd have tarred and feathered myself. But looking at the schedule, I definitely saw some winnable games in the first half, especially considering just one of their six division games were played within their first eight games, and the AFC West is where most of their strength of schedule came from. So .500-ish is about what I expected out of them.
Any guesses on their record at the end of the season?
Not really. Many of my questions about them preseason are answered for the most part. And yet this team really is a big mystery to me in a lot of ways. 2 weeks ago they lose, and look completely terrible doing it, to the then winless Browns team. And they follow that up by going into Seattle and beating the defending champion Seahawks, not only beating them but only allowing 3 points. This team has just covered the entire spectrum of what you can look like in it's first 8 games.
What questions have been answered for you?
Probably the biggest one has been how will Derek Carr perform. I think the Raiders found a bit of a gem in Carr. He's shown a lot of moxie so far early in his young career, and I think he just continues to grow and get better, and a few years down the road you could possibly see him be great.
Who will be the starting running back in the final game of the season?
That's a great question. We've seen a number of them this season: Jones-Drew, who was released. Jonathan Dwyer, who was released. Darren McFadden, the starter until further notice, has just 189 yards in 8 games. DMC was having his best game of the season Sunday, until fumbling the ball at the 2 yard line and was benched the remainder of the game. You also have Latavius Stewart, who's looked pretty good, and Mikel LeShoure, signed after the release of Dwyer. If I was a betting man I'd say McFadden, just because when healthy he can be a real dynamic runner with his combination of speed and power, I saw his benching of a message rather than a change.
How about the starting kicker?
Laughs Well yes, that's an interesting one to watch as well. Janikowski, once one of the best kickers in the NFL, has missed 5 FG's so far this season, including one in three straight games. Makeable FG's, especially for his standards, so there is definitely a cause for concern. I really don't know what the problem is, but my guess is that is totally mental on his part. It's in his head now, and that's why it's worrisome, because sometimes that doesn't just correct itself. Definitely a sidenote the rest of the season to watch.
Best win and biggest loss of the season so far?
Best win without a doubt last week against the Seahawks. On the road in possibly the toughest stadium to play in the NFL. The defense showed up in a big way, and really won the game, but the offense was consistent and played enough ball control to win. Huge win for the Raiders. Loss, even as ugly as the loss to the Browns was, I say so far it's the loss to San Diego. The only division game so far, and a game you had the lead in, in the 4th quarter and found a way to lose. That loss is the biggest reason you have to look for a Wildcard now instead of the division, as the Chargers are running away with it now.
Is a Wildcard berth possible?
Possible? Yes. Likely? No. The Raiders would need a heck of a winning streak to finish. At 3-5 you're chasing the Raven's, who are 6-3. The Patriots and Colts both sit at 5-4, and the Dolphins and Chiefs both sit at 4-4. I don't want to get into rocket science here, but you would shoot for at the least a 10-6 record to get in, and that means finishing 7-1, which is an admirable thought but would be quite a task, with 5 division games left (one more with the 8-1 Chargers), the 5-3 Bills, and the undefeated 8-0 49ers.
One last question, you've mentioned them but no in-depth. Thoughts on the defense side of the ball so far?
Pretty impressed so far. I think the front seven has played quite well. Mack is the real deal and has fit right into an NFL defense and excelled. Especially against the run, the 3 linebacker's cover the entire field and are quick to the ball. The secondary has been a bit questionable so far, and I think that you see a direct correlation between the pass rush and the pass defense. If they are not getting pressure up front and hurrying the quarterback, the secondary struggles. They're young at CB and I'm already interested to see where they go in the offseason, with Charles Woodson most likely retiring and Tarrel Brown aging a bit. Might be some turnover there. But in games where you get a pass rush the difference is amazing.
The Cliff Notes version of this one would tell how the Bronco's couldn't get their offense rolling until it was too late, and the Raiders won this one with big plays, especially in the closing seconds of both halves.
The Broncos tied the game up with :50 seconds left in the first half, to make it a 3-3 game. With 3 timeouts left for the Raiders, they were aggressive, and rookie Derek Carr hit Rod Streater with a deep pass across the middle, and he outran the defense for a 57 yards TD and 10-3 halftime lead.
The opening possession of the second half, Darren McFadden broke free for a 50 yard run, that set up a 2 yard TD run by DMC 3 plays later, to extend the lead. It was the late 3rd quarter before Peyton Manning finally seemed to wake up, and a TD, 2pt conversion, and a FG on their next drive tied the ballgame up at 17-17, with just 24 seconds left in the game. The Raiders had all their timeouts left, and decided to run one play to see what happened.
"We went Empty Set, and Denarius (Moore) was my first read on the play, he had go route." said Derek Carr post-game. "The corner on him bumped but let him go. Denver had 3 safeties deep but after the bump Denarius was wide open. He made a great play hanging onto the ball, he was hit almost immediately."
It was a gain of 24 yards, to their own 44 yard line. And the clock down to 12 seconds. Their next play would gain even more.
"Trips Right with Moore in the slot. He ran a wheel towards the sideline, with Rod (Streater) on a deep Post to the middle, and David (Ausberry) in a flat towards the sideline. Rod was my first read as I wanted something deep and to the middle to set up a possible kick, but he drew his corner and the safety in the middle coming down to him. The other corner too 'Berry in the flat and it left Denarius basically alone down the sideline, so I threw it up to him and he pretty much had a one on one with the deep safety, and Denarius won."
The pass play gained 37 yards and set up a game-winning 44 yard FG by Janikowski as time expired, which was by no means a gimme, as Janikowski has struggled all season.
Game Notes: Denver kicker Matt Prater connected on a 63 yard FG, which ties the 2nd longest ever by an NFL kicker. Prater broke the NFL record last season, kicking a 64 yarder against the Titans in Denver.....Peyton Manning had less than 50 yards passing through nearly 3 quarters, and was well on his way to a personal-worst game before putting together two solid drives.....Raiders DE Cliff Avril left the game in the 3rd with a strained hamstring. He did return in limited fashion and is expected to play next week......Raiders organization announced before the game that contract talks with All-Pro Center Stefan Wisniewski have been tabled until after the season. The Raiders cited a growing epidemic in the NFL, having tons of money, but not funds, as the biggest issue in negotiations....The Raiders travel to San Diego next week to take on the 8-1 division-leading Chargers.
Prater hit one on me that had me going wtf!
San Diego, CA-
The Raiders pull the upset, in a game which most, on both sides, would like to forget. It wasn't pretty, as both teams either played superb defense, or both came in with terrible offense.
The Chargers dominated the game offense wise, as in plays. They won the Time of Possession battle, having the ball on offense 22:07 compared to 13:53 for the Raiders. The Raiders only ran 24 plays total on offense, and one of those was a kneel by Derek Carr. The story was 4 interceptions by Phillip Rivers, as they moved the ball pretty well. The Raiders had trouble converting on 3rd down. The Raiders WRs didn't help their QB any, dropping 3 of his passes (out of 11 attempts), 2 of them on 3rd downs.
The Chargers had the ball, and were driving. With 1:30 left in the game, a 1st and 10 and nearly in FG range, Chargers OC called a PA pass, going against their conservative nature, and it blew up in their face. It was a Comeback route that Rivers threw a bit too late, and Raiders CB DJ Hayden picked it off and returned it 82 yards for the TD, narrowly escaping a tackle by a diving Phillip Rivers. Another Rivers pick to Tarrell Brown sealed the 10-3 victory.
It was a huge win for the Raiders, who have won 3 in a row to climb to 5-5, still clinging to hope of a Wildcard berth. San Diego falls to 8-2, but remain in the drivers seat in the AFC West, barring a major collapse. The Raiders host another hot division rival next week, the 6-4 Chiefs.
Chris Polk, newest Raiders HB
We all know it's a cutthroat business in the NFL, but usually not this tough. One day after fumbling a kickoff just before halftime, allowing a FG make by the Rams, rookie HB and main Kick Returner George Atkinson has been cut by the Raiders. Former Philadelphia Eagle and current Free Agent HB Chris Polk was signed to take the roster spot.
Is it a huge release? Not really. Atkinson had not seen a snap on offense all season, and though he was the kick returner, the Raiders have struggled all season returning kicks, so a change might actually do some good. Is it a knee-jerk reaction? Without a doubt it was, as Atkinson has not fumbled to this point and the play itself seemed chance to being with.
Note that Polk by all accounts will not takeover kick return duties. Polk is a tough runner with great vision, but is by no means a burner. More than likely it's either going to be Denarius Moore, or rookie CB T.J. Carrie, who is ultra-athletic, and has experience returning kicks in college.
DOWN AND OUT.
As if the 45-6 thrashing by the 49ers yesterday wasn't bad enough, even as it all but put the nail in the Raider's playoff coffin, the news out of Oakland today was very somber: Rod Streater is out for the remainder of the season. Streater left the game Sunday in the 3rd quarter, after bending awkwardly on a tackle by Niner Safety Antoine Bethea. Streater did not return, and an MRI this morning revealed a torn groin. The second year WR was having a breakout season for the Raiders, ranking 6th in the NFL in both Receptions and Receiving Yards, and formed a great rapport with rookie QB Derek Carr.
The Raiders also announced that WR Andre Holmes would get the opportunity to start in place of Streater, opposite James Jones. Holmes filled in nicely for Oakland in place of Streater against the 49ers, catching 4 passes for 70 yards, all of it in the 4th quarter.
SEASON ONE STATS
7-9 - 3rd place AFC West
Points Per Game 16.1 (21st)
Yards 218.0 (23rd)
Pass Yds 159.5 (21st)
Rush Yds 58.5 (26th)
Points Per Game 19.8 (23rd)
Yards 249.6 (24th)
Pass Yds 160.3 (12th)
Rush Yds 89.3 (27th)
Turnover Differential- -2
Derek Carr 210/362 58% 2793 yds 16 td 30 int 61.3 QBR
Darren McFadden 138 att 506 yds 3.7 avg 2 td
Mikel LeShoure 47 att 129 yds 2.7 avg 3 td
Latavius Murray 40 att 162 yds 4.1 avg 0 td
Jonathan Dwyer 15 att 50 yds 3.3 avg 1 td
Chris Polk 12 att 44 yds 3.7 avg 1 td
Maurice Jones-Drew 10 att 34 yds 3.4 avg 0 td
Rod Streater 53 rec 828 yds 5 td
James Jones 39 rec 466 yds 3 td
Denarius Moore 35 rec 572 yds 3 td
David Ausberry 30 rec 388 yds 2 td
Andre Holmes 19 rec 267 yds 0 td
Darren McFadden 17 rec 121 yds 0 td
Marcel Reece 10 rec 76 yds 1 td
Mychal Rivera 7 rec 85 yds 2 td
Mikel LeShoure 1 rec 1 yds 0 td
Tyvon Branch 70
Mario Harvey 56
Charles Woodson 56
Sio Moore 50
Khalil Mack 44
DJ Hayden 36
Tarell Brown 35
Justin Tuck 6
Khalil Mack 5
Cliff Avril 5
Antonio Smith 4
Mario Harvey 7
Charles Woodson 6
DJ Hayden 5
Tarell Brown 4
Tyvon Branch 4
Sio Moore 3
Raiders making big moves! If Carr cuts down on the INTS gonna be a tough team to beat
Interested to see how you run the ball with a consistent star
Draft Recap 2015
Before the season even ended, I knew the defensive line needed to be revamped. Pass rush was few and far
between, and with an unproven secondary, I need pressure on the QB. My starting DT's, Antonio Smith and
Pat Sims, are 33yrs and 30yrs old, respectively. DE Justin Tuck and Lamarr Woodley, also 33yrs and 30 yrs
old, respectively. DE Cliff Avril, brought in via trade with Seattle, disappointed with only 5 sacks on
the season, and though I'd have liked to brought him back, he was a "Funds" casualty. So looking at almost
a complete remodel of the defensive front, that was my main focus this offseason.
I scouted Defensive End and Defensive Tackle heavily, Cornerback and Halfback lightly, and my remaining points
went to late-projected Safety (as I also had a retired Charles Woodson to replace, and an aging Tyvon Branch).
Round 1.16 - DE Darnell Sam - Oklahoma
87spd 92acc 89pur 79pmv 82fmv
49awr 51prc 70bsh
After scouting, I had Sam pegged as my pick at 16. I was hoping he would make it there, and he did. I only
scout Letters, so it is tricky getting things right (which I love), but I felt pretty good about him. He
has pretty solid numbers and no real holes in his game. I had hoped his Pass Rush Attributes were a bit higher
than they turned out, but he's still very solid and should mold nicely, and he definitely has elite speed for
Round 2.16 - CB Khalid Hanna - Tennessee
92spd 92agi 80mcv 72cth
63awr 65prc 78zcv 67prs
I wanted a DT here, Kilgore and really was set to take him. Kilgore was projected in Round 4 so I felt sure he'd
be here. As the pick got closer, I decided to gamble, and hold off on Kilgore and hope he'd be there in Round 3
for me, and decided to take the best available CB left. This really did not work out for me. Hanna is a solid
player, but you could argue his value here as a mid-2nd Round pick. Hanna has a decent skill set, but most likely
will be a career backup and possible spot starter, but with CB Coverages so expensive to upgrade, he probably
won't be much more than that.
Round 3.16 - DE Effrem McNeal - Georgia Tech
85spd 89acc 82pur 82pow 78pmv 77fmv
79str 42awr 55prc 66bsh
And then of course, the gamble doesn't work out, as Kilgore is picked 2 spots ahead of me by the Cowboys. And
when your guy is sniped so close to your own pick, it throws everything out of wack, and most often panic sets
in as you scramble for Plan B. I flirted with taking a couple of highly-projected players here who were somehow
left on the board (the TE projected 1 overall, and the superstar HB Cleveland ended up taking), but I ended up
going safe and selecting another DE whom I had scouted and seemed the best left. McNeal is also really solid,
and unlike CB, I believe Pass Rush Moves are a bit cheaper to upgrade. He really only needs some work in BlockShed
to be a very solid player.
Round 4.16 - DT Tiger Randle - Ohio State
78spd 92acc 80pmv 78bsh
42awr 47prc 72fmv
The Randle pick was a product of scouting so heavily on certain things. He appeared to be the best Defensive lineman
left so I went ahead and took him. He turned out pretty good, especially as value in the 4th Round. As it turned out,
Randle's size and skillset seemed much better suited at DE than DT, therefore he will be moved to LE, and actually
have a better shot at starting, than 3rd round choice McNeal.
Round 5.16 - FS De'Joshua Sanford - FIU
87spd 89acc 81zcv 80pow
46awr 46prc 66pur 73tak
With Charles Woodson's retirement fresh, and still not addressed by the Raiders, a defensive player was once again
selected, this time a Safety in Sanford. Sanford, for as talented as he seems, is a very raw player, and will
certainly need a bit of seasoning before he's ready to hit the field in a starting capacity. Big project.
Round 6.16 - HB Sergio Rivers - Auburn
90spd 90acc 79elu 82bcv
76trk 47awr 68car
With the constant shuffling in the Oakland backfield this past season, it only seems fitting the team would draft a
HB as well in the draft. What was a basic flyer on Rivers, as HB was lightly scouted, he seemed a good value here.
Unfortunately, Rivers failed his physical and was released by the team last week.
Round 7.16 - LT Collin Briscoe - North Carolina State
91str 84rbk 81ibl
63awr 69acc 73pbk
Briscoe was projected to be undrafted, and he nearly was. Recalling the major hole at Center and uncertainty at the
LT spot, the Raiders took Briscoe here in Round 7, and he ended up being a pleasant suprise. Solid attributes along
with great strength, Briscoe figures to be in the mix come training camp, and could push for a spot on the roster.
Draft Grade: B- (81/100)
Darnell Sam is an outstanding pick, and has superstar potential. If I had it to do over, I would have went with DT Kilgore
with my 2nd round pick, and then in either the 3rd or 4th, I would have went OL instead of CB, as in hindsight, OL may
be an issue for the Raiders, specifically in the future, and there was also alot of solid OL in this draft, and I waited until
the 7th round to find that out. The pick of Tiger Randle though, really saved this draft and kept it a B- instead of worse. He
is not the player that Kilgore is, but he is at least comparable, and is a possible starter once moved to DE.
BIG CASH, AND BIG SPLASH
Big Cash on Nick Fairley.
The Raiders made DT Nick Fairley a very happy man this offseason, paying him like a top-tier defensive tackle, and banking on the hope that he'll play that way. Oakland faced an aging defensive front, that struggled to pressure the QB in 2014, and recorded just 25 sacks on the season. Their 4 starters on the defensive line were a combined 124 years old, and their rotation man Lamarr Woodley was 30yrs old himself. So change began when they released all five of the aforementioned lineman, and threw a ton of cash at former Lions Fairley. Fairley is often disruptive, but also, often relaxed,and has the stigma of "taking plays off", so Oakland had better hope they get the high-motor version of the DT. Sources say that Oakland was limited in Funds, and was only able to offer a 13m Bonus, though Fairley desired something in the 17-20 range. With less bonus, Oakland gave much more than desired Base Salary, and Fairley signed on the dotted line, and becomes the first piece to a revamped defensive line.
Big Splash with Doug Martin trade.
Before I explain, let's run off some numbers. Oakland was 26th in the NFL in Rushing. The Raiders averaged a terrible 58.5 rushing yards a game, and it's honestly tough to believe there were actually 6 teams that were worse than that. Their leading rusher was Darren McFadden, with 506 rushing yards (and yes, that's a full season). Most importantly though, was their YPC average, which was 3.4 yards per carry, and ranked towards the bottom of the league. So it's a position that needed to be addressed, and address they did, trading their 2016 1st and 3rd round draft picks. It may seem like a hefty price, but Doug Martin is a stud, and as long as the offensive line can find it in them to run block, it could really change the dynamic of this team. I know one Raider who must be overjoyed, and that is Quarterback Derek Carr, who was a sitting duck in the pocket with no real threat of a run game all last season.
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