Scouring the wires

Quick hits from Lane Kiffin’s conference call press briefing Sunday night:

— Kiffin is expecting the Raiders to be on the lookout for potential replacements for fullback Oren O’Neal and wide receiver Drew Carter, both lost for the season with left knee injuries.

At fullback, Marcel Reece, although an intriguing talent who could have a place on the practice squad, is not ready for prime time on Sept. 8 in the backfield.

“We really only have one with Justin (Griffith),” Kiffin said. “The other guy is a project, he was a receiver a month ago.”

Aside from starting split end Javon Walker and wide receiver Ronald Curry, the seven receivers currently on the Raiders roster have combined for seven receptions for 66 yards. Six of those for 49 yards come from Johnnie Lee Higgins, while Chris McFoy had one catch for 19 yards after being promoted from the practice squad last year.

Jonathan Holland, Drisan James, Todd Watkins and of course rookie draft picks Arman Shields and Chaz Schilens have not caught a pass in the NFL.

“There’s not a lot of history there as far as guys playing in the league besides Javon and Ronald,” Kiffin said. “Really, none of those guys have really played before. Johnnie played a few, I think he had two or three catches last year so it would be tough to only go with two guys who have played before.”

— Veterans available include the perennially troubled but talented Koren Robinson _ whose best success has been on kickoff returns _ and veteran Joe Horn, who has talked his way out of his last two places of employment. Horn’s agent told ESPN.com’s Bill Williamson he expected to talk to the Raiders, but it’s not as if agents ever say, “It’s the darndest thing. No one is interested in my client.”

When it comes to players who aren’t currently employed, there is usually a reason why they’re not employed.

Not that the Raiders won’t be interested.

“There are always a few guys who have been veterans at every position that wait for things to happen like this, for teams to get injuries,” Kiffin said. “They stay in shape and they know their bodies so they know they can still come in late in camp and still contribute.

“That’s one option. There are a number of guys out there. Another option is to wait either until a couple of days for these first cuts or even more for the last cuts. The last cuts, some good people are getting let go on some of the good teams.”

— For the record, Mike Williams is available. So are Johnnie Morant, Doug Gabriel and Carlos Francis.

Never mind.

— As much as the Raiders like Shields’ skill set, his odds of making the 53-man roster appear slim.

“I wouldn’t want to put a ceiling on it but it would be pretty tough,” Kiffin said. “These guys have had so many reps of running our offense, he’s missed so much time. It would be difficult but you never want to count him out.”

Kiffin hopes Shields will be available to practice, although that has been a common theme throughout camp.

— When asked about players possibly in for tryouts, Kiffin could have said, “We’ve got some things going, but I’m not at liberty to say,” or something along those lines, because teams don’t often confirm tryouts.

Instead, (editorial comment to follow) Kiffin lent even more clarity to his current authority with regard to personnel when he said, “I have no idea.”

— OK, enough with the Darren McFadden as Jerome Bettis act. The end is apparently near, with the Denver Broncos on the horizon Sept. 8.

“All I can say on that is I have to continue to remind you guys that it’s preseason and you guys can figure out what that means,” Kiffin said.

— With Ricky Brown apparently having sewed up the job as strong side linebacker and Johnnie Lee Higgins looking to be the return specialist by default, the only real question left is starting center. Kiffin had Jake Grove in the lead last week, but said he may have information regarding a depth chart this week.

— JaMarcus Russell earned generally positive reviews for the third straight time. Russell went 14-for-28 for 140 yards, but missed out twice on potential touchdown passes _ the first when Zach Miller nearly came down with a ball in the end zone but was ruled out, the second when a pass into the back of the end zone glanced off the hands of Curry, who was being jostled by a defender.

On the Curry play, Kiffin thought it may have been worth a flag for defensive interference.

“He had one poor throw, the interception,” Kiffin said. “Other than that, he didn’t force things. He did well, especially under all the pressure he was under. He wasn’t back there setting his feet a lot. He had to move around a lot and made plays on the run.”

— Kiffin acknowledged that Fred Wakefield struggled when inserted at right tackle, where he played in place of Cornell Green for much of the second half.

— Safety Rashad Baker (ankle), cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha (ankle) and safety Hiram Eugene (hip) could all miss practice Monday. Shane Lechler probably will not kick, meaning Glenn Pakulak may be retained on the roster through Tuesday cutdowns. Sebastian Janikowski could be available, meaning Aaron Elling could be seeking employment.

— Maybe “Super” Mario Henderson is the answer to the receiving woes. He lined up as a tight end on the left side, and was even announced as an eligible receiver. Michael Bush ran behind him to get a first down.

Kiffin said he was just giving opponents something to look at.

— In Oakland, Kiffin ran a two-minute drill for no apparent reason in the first half other than to get a look at it. He abandoned the run, went for a touchdown when normally would attempt a field goal and attached absolutely no significance to the supposedly most important week of the preseason other than the fact he lost two offensive players for the duration of the season.

Elsewhere, Tom Brady and LaDainian Tomlinson aren’t likely to play until the lights go on. Teams continue to charge full price for half-(bleep) games.

You’ll never hear me trashing Raider fans for failing to show up in August. It’s an instance where they’re showing their good sense. Even a lot of people buying season tickets aren’t bothering to show, because the 39,000-plus announced crowd was pretty much a joke.

The Raiders were offering up partial season ticket plans Saturday night, and seem to be actually making some headway in marketing which would really pay off should the team finally be worth watching.

Come up with a full season ticket plan in February that doesn’t include the preseason and then they’ve done something.

I know. Lots of money at stake. Can’t be done. Blah, blah, blah.

It’s never a bad thing to tailgate on a Saturday evening in the sunshine. But paying full price for the scrimmage to follow is an insult to the paying customers _ not just in Oakland, but throughout the league.


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • Dakota

    By Tony Moss, NFL Editor

    (Sports Network) – The dysfunction continues for the Oakland Raiders.

    A team that has gone a horrid 19-61 over the past five seasons would have to eventually rise from the abyss in the parity-stricken NFL, right?

    Not necessarily. The events of the offseason that followed Oakland’s 4-12 campaign of 2007 only made the franchise look more clueless and directionless, not less so.

    Where to begin?

    Well, head coach Lane Kiffin tried to fire defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, who presided over the No. 26 scoring defense in the NFL last year, but owner Al Davis vetoed the move. Then, it began to seem that Kiffin was on his way out, showing up for public events not wearing any Raiders gear and generally giving vague answers (or no answers) when asked about his future. Kiffin made it to training camp with his job intact, but you’d find few folks willing to wager that he’ll make it all the way through 2008.

    The Raiders spent a ton of money in the free agent period, but spent it curiously.

    They gave ridiculously outsized contracts to average defensive tackle Tommy Kelly and wide receiver Javon Walker, both of whom come off major injuries.

    Davis also dealt for Falcons cornerback DeAngelo Hall, whose prima donna act in Atlanta made many more headlines than his play.

    There were a few canny moves, like the signing of underrated safety Gibril Wilson, a key part of the Super Bowl Champion Giants’ defense, and the selection of dazzling Arkansas running back Darren McFadden with the No. 4 overall pick.

    But the bad still outweighed the good by a wide margin, and it’s hard to believe a team that made slight progress under Kiffin last year will have a chance to truly jell with so much uncertainty permeating the organization.

    If this team’s play does indeed match up to whatever Davis’ vision is, it will be a Lazarus act of the highest order.

    Below we take a capsule look at the 2008 edition of the Oakland Raiders, with a personnel evaluation and prognosis included therein:

    2007 RECORD: 4-12 (t3rd, AFC West)

    LAST PLAYOFF APPEARANCE: 2002, lost to Tampa Bay, 48-21, in Super Bowl

    COACH (RECORD): Lane Kiffin (4-12 in one year with Raiders, 4-12 overall)



    OFFENSIVE STAR: Darren McFadden, RB (1st Round, Arkansas)

    DEFENSIVE STAR: Nnamdi Asomugha, CB (34 tackles, 1 INT)

    OFFENSIVE TEAM RANKS: 6th rushing, 31st passing, 23rd scoring

    DEFENSIVE TEAM RANKS: 31st rushing, 8th passing, 26th scoring

    KEY ADDITIONS: QB Marques Tuiasosopo (from Jets), RB Darren McFadden (1st Round, Arkansas), WR Javon Walker (from Broncos), C John Wade (from Buccaneers), T Kwame Harris (from 49ers), DE Greg Spires (from Buccaneers), DE Kalimba Edwards (from Lions), DT William Joseph (from Giants), CB DeAngelo Hall (from Falcons), S Gibril Wilson (from Giants), S Adam Archuleta (from Bears)

    KEY DEPARTURES: QB Josh McCown (to Dolphins), QB Daunte Culpepper (not tendered), RB Dominic Rhodes (to Colts), RB LaMont Jordan (to Patriots), FB Oren O’Neal (out for season/injured), WR Tim Dwight (not tendered), WR Jerry Porter (to Jaguars), WR Drew Carter (out for season/injured), C Jeremy Newberry (to Chargers), T Barry Sims (to 49ers), DE Tyler Brayton (to Panthers), DE/OLB Chris Clemons (to Eagles), CB Fabian Washington (to Ravens), RS/CB Chris Carr (to Titans), CB Duane Starks (released), S Stuart Schweigert (to Redskins)

    QB: The JaMarcus Russell (373 passing yards, 2 TD, 4 INT) era begins in earnest for the Raiders this season, as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2007 Draft is given an opportunity to sink or swim. Russell played in just four games last year, starting one, but showed enough positive signs in a season- ending loss to the Chargers to give Oakland fans hope. With 2007 starters Josh McCown and Daunte Culpepper both departed, two prodigal sons return to back Russell. Andrew Walter was at the bottom of a four-player depth chart last season, but is the odds-on favorite to win primary backup duties in 2008. Marques Tuiaosopo couldn’t get off the bench in six years with the Raiders, but returns as the probable third-stringer after one season in a similar capacity with the Jets.

    RB: The Raiders’ most significant offensive bright spot last year was the play of Justin Fargas (1009 rushing yards, 4 TD, 23 receptions), who went over 1,000 yards late in the season before being sidelined with a knee injury. Still, Oakland couldn’t pass up drafting the dynamic McFadden in the first round, and it stands to reason that the players will both see the football frequently this year. The jettisoning of LaMont Jordan and Dominic Rhodes will help Michael Bush move up the depth chart. Bush sat out all of last season with a broken leg, but at 245 pounds gives the team an intriguing option between the tackles. With Bush on the roster, it will be interesting to see whether the team uses fullback Justin Griffith (26 receptions, 1 TD) as frequently.

    WR/TE: Though they got decent production from Ronald Curry (55 receptions, 4 TD) and the since-departed Jerry Porter a year ago, Oakland lacked a bona fide No. 1 receiver that could both stretch the field and make the tough catch. Enter Javon Walker (26 receptions with Denver), who could once do those things, but is now a major question mark due to frequent knee trouble. At 30, Walker will have to prove to both the Raiders and the masses that he still has it. Curry’s biggest competition for the No. 2 job was supposed to come from newcomer Drew Carter (38 receptions, 4 TD with Carolina), but Carter was injured in the team’s third preseason game and is out for the year. After Walker and Curry, it’s difficult to say what receivers will stick. Rookie Arman Shields (4th Round, Richmond) and Chaz Schilens (7th round, San Diego State) will battle incumbents Johnnie Lee Higgins (6 receptions), Chris McFoy (1 reception), and first-year player Todd Watkins for a spot on the roster. At tight end, Zach Miller (44 receptions, 3 TD) was quietly effective last year, and will top a depth chart that also includes John Madsen (8 receptions, 1 TD) and Tony Stewart.

    OL: The Oakland offensive line wasn’t nearly as embarrassing in 2007 as it had been the year prior, when it gave up a whopping 72 sacks. That number shrunk to 41 last year, and Fargas’ 1,000-yard season was further evidence of the unit’s development. Still, it would be a reach to call this unit “good.” Left guard Robert Galley, right guard Cooper Carlisle, and right tackle Cornell Green are the most reliable players up front, but should hold off making those reservations for Hawaii. Left tackle could be a real problem, since Kwame Harris, a pariah for five years with the 49ers, has been basically guaranteed a job as the successor to Barry Sims. The competition at center is among John Wade and Jake Grove, with the 10-year veteran Wade looking to have the edge over 2004 second-round pick Grove. Paul McQuistan, Mario Henderson, and Chris Morris all served in backup roles last year and have a good chance to remain on the roster.

    DL: NFL observers are still scratching their heads at the $18.5 million in guaranteed money given to defensive tackle Tommy Kelly (30 tackles, 1 sack), who missed nine games with a torn ACL last year and was never a household name to begin with. Kelly will have to stay healthy to even begin justifying the money, and the same goes for Gerard Warren (22 tackles, 4 sacks), who started just three games a year ago and missed five contests due to injury. Terdell Sands (23 tackles), who had a poor season in 2007 but has started for Oakland, will be an experienced backup, and ex-Giant William Joseph has a chance to be in the rotation as well. At end, Derrick Burgess (39 tackles, 8 sacks) is entrenched as a starter but the free agent defection of Chris Clemons calls the other starting slot into question. Jay Richardson (33 tackles, 1 sack) started 10 games as a rookie last year and will be part of the discussion, but veterans Kalimba Edwards (17 tackles, 3 sacks with Detroit) and Greg Spires (26 tackles, 2 sacks with Tampa Bay) have a bit more name cachet.

    LB: Underrated around the league because of their team’s struggles, middle linebacker Kirk Morrison (120 tackles, 4 INT, 1 sack) and weakside LB Thomas Howard (95 tackles, 6 INT, 1 sack) are talented and could play for any team in the NFL. The duo was 1-2 on the Raiders in tackles and combined for more interceptions (10) than the entire Oakland secondary (8). The strong side job is less secure, with holdovers Sam Williams (16 tackles) and Robert Thomas (62 tackles) battling third-year players Ricky Brown (13 tackles) and Jon Alston (8 tackles) for duties there. All four players are unlikely to make the club, especially if Isaiah Ekejiuba (12 tackles), who played in 10 games as a backup and special-teamer a year ago, makes it.

    DB: Davis was especially unhappy with the play of the Raiders secondary last season, which is why he shook things up and added cornerback DeAngelo Hall (70 tackles, 5 INT with Atlanta) and strong safety Gibril Wilson (92 tackles, 4 INT with the Giants). On paper, a group including Hall, Wilson, cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha (34 tackles, 1 INT) and free safety Michael Huff (85 tackles, 1 sack, 1 INT) should be solid, but there isn’t a great deal of depth behind those players and nickel back Stanford Routt (42 tackles, 3 INT). Backup safeties Hiram Eugene (31 tackles) and Jarrod Cooper (5 tackles) could be in trouble if forced into starting roles, and fourth corner Chris Johnson (13 tackles) could have trouble holding off fourth-round rookie Tyvon Branch (Connecticut).

    SPECIAL TEAMS: Say what you will about the Raiders’ selection of kicker Sebastian Janikowski (23-32 FG) in the first round of the 2000 Draft, but he and Pro Bowl punter Shane Lechler (49.1 avg.) are the longest-tenured players on the Oakland roster and have outlasted many other kickers and punters throughout the league. Janikowski was battling a hamstring injury during training camp, but was expected to be ready for the season. Johnnie Lee Higgins (5.2 punt return avg.) has a chance to field both punts and kickoffs following the departure of Chris Carr to free agency, but will be pushed by backup corner Tyvon Branch in that capacity. Long snapper Jon Condo will fill those duties for a second straight year.

    PROGNOSIS: Even if you believe Kiffin put the Raiders on the right track last season, when the team was much more competitive that it had been under Art Shell, you have to admit a derailment seems imminent. With the owner and head coach at odds, and the head coach and defensive coordinator not exactly best buds, a cloud will hang over this club all season long. And that’s before you get to the fact that Russell and McFadden – potentially the team’s most important offensive players – are green and will undoubtedly make mistakes. Walker is an “X” factor, the o-line remains shaky, and the same defensive front seven that struggled against the run last year has not received much of an upgrade. There is talent on this team, but the high level of uncertainty that surrounds it will conspire to saddle the Raiders with yet another losing season.

    08/25 15:58:37 ET

    “…it’s hard to believe a team that made slight progress under Kiffin last year will have a chance to truly jell with so much uncertainty permeating the organization.”

    That about sums up my concern and anger at Al Davis.

  • http://! Blackholepriest

    Uh huh and…

  • La Milicia Negra


    good to hear.. I had 4 days in the hut, doing nothing.. it was great.. Good you’re back..

  • r8dr4lfe

    Our defence got Matt Leinert benched
    Warner will be the starter.We can do ok with 1 more WR.
    lets put MBush as FB him and Dmac in the backfield at once.They are both good at receiving.Lets just get Jhorn 1 year contract

  • humbolt

    Dakota…good find. You have a linky/URL for this article? Thanks.

  • La Milicia Negra

    you all know I’m thinking McCown should be a backup QB, what about bringing him back as a receiver *giggle*

  • Brien

    arrrrrrgggggghhhh me maties how goes it?

  • r8dr4lfe

    Oh yeah is Doug Jolley still with the Jets
    if not then maybe take a look if yes than see what we can do to aquire him

  • Brien

    Time to go get Deverey Henderson as discussed last night………the saints gave up a 2nd and 5th for shockey i bet they can use another draft pick

  • Dakota
  • Brien

    I keep hearing folks talk about Joe Horn……..but why?

  • V.B.R8R

    Chris: great point. What some people are missing here is that we went for it on 4th and goal a couple of times and fell short. What I thought was a TD by Zach Miller that was unfortunately overturned (REALLY close) and one drop by Ron Curry that could have been called pass interference. Add a missed field goal by a dude who’s getting cut soon…score could have been WAY different going into the half and the first half was the only real important part of that game. We held them to no offense and made Leinart look like a 6th grader. Not THAT bad, considering…

  • r8dr4lfe

    Because he can catch the damn ball

  • Andrews Mom

    By Tony Moss, a dime a dozen newswriter

    Raiders suck cause I say so

    By Andrews mom, bigtime Raider fan

    Tony Moss blows

    Best year ever!!

  • Brien

    Harris and Green= terrible

  • Dakota

    So, if Carter and O’Neal are put on the IR, it means we only have to cut 3 guys by tomorrow afternoon. Who will get the axe? My money is on Derrick Gray, DE; Glenn Pakulak, P; and Jeff Otis, QB.

  • r8dr4lfe

    He played with Mvick strong armed QB used to catching fast balls he’s an upgrade over Rcurry keep him as #2 WR

  • Brien

    R8DR- Horn is old as hell and wont get the separation you think….we need a WR with some speed…….at this point curry and horn are on par with one another……would be pointless getting him but I wont doubt they sign him though

  • humbolt

    Thanks, Dakota.

  • Brien

    yeah horn sure did play with in 2007…….yawwwwwwwnnn he played with aaron brooks a strong armed qb…..get the facts straight buddy

  • Brien

    Joe horn hasnt been good since 2004………get over it

  • Brien

    joe never played with vick

  • r8dr4lfe

    Tim Browns old azz got seperation.Enough for first downs thats all we need him to do i know he is faster than Timmie was.

  • No Pie in the sky

    That article is the same old cheap journalistic dribble as we’ve been seeing since January. It’s based on an oft repeated and basically unsubstantiated “rift” between Al and Lane which is supposedly destroying the place.

    After buying the premise (of a self destructive rift) it’s easy to discount all the positives that happened during the off season. JR is healthy and committed and showing leadership skills, was at OTA and minicamp on time. Nmamdi showed up to camp. McFadden looks good and was signed on time. Bush looks good. Hall is an improvement and Schwiegert is gone. Most of the “departing” players were folks the team was willing to let depart.

    The raiders didn’t have the drama of the Rams, Packers, Miami, Jets, TBay, Niners, Bengals, Bears, or the significant injuries to qbs or key players as the Pats, Colts, Redskins or Bengals.

    As I said earlier, until they prove that they dont’ deserve my loyalty, this year’s team (and that includes Al and Lane) has my loyalty and patience.

    I’m still in!

  • Brien

    Horn faster than Timmy? lol in what years? like the last 2-3 of timmy’s career? come on!!!

  • r8dr4lfe

    Ok my bad no biggie honest mistake.Still an upgrade over Curry

  • mercat

    “Same old dumbass arguement, these dumbells want Mr Davis to trun over his franchise to young kid who hasn’t even though he hasn’t won a damn thing and we don’t know if he ever could if you gave the entire organization to him.

    Hey!! idiots this kid is UNPROVEN get it UNPROVEN that he even knows how to coach let alone run a draft.

    It’s one thing to give a team to someone who’s proven he can handle it. It’s totally something else to give total autonomy to someone who hasn’t.

    It’s like letting your 16 year old son who’s learning how to drive, drive the Porsche while you drive the beatup VW. Who in there right mind would do that?? but a complete idiot.

    Yet you want Mr Davis to do that with Kiffin. Let Kiffin get his first winning record then you MIGHT have a point.”

    First off, we haven’t been the Porshe since 02. And when you are senile, you shouldn’t be driving the car anyways; accidents happen, even with good intentions.

    I think a better analogy would be this. Al Davis wants Lane to cook him a filet mignon, but all he’s giving him is cold fish.

  • r8dr4lfe

    Yeah the last 2 years but Timmie still got 1st downs thats all we need him for

  • Dakota

    Brien, you want to get rid of Harris, Green and Grove…who the heck are we going to replace them with this late in the game? Henderson, McQuistan and Wade?

  • Brien

    How the phuck is horn an upgrade in 2008 over curry? he hasn’t been good since 2004!!!!

  • Scottish Raider

    Dakota, Parcels has already cut the Fish to 70 – so that he can move fast to net any swimming talent.

    If I was the Raiders GM (heaven help you), I would be tempted to cut hard tomorrow – and essentially focus on the 53 currently pencilled onto the roster, the likely practice squad members plus any upgrades/trialists I could pick up this week.

    No need to carry dead weight.

  • Big Daddy WooWoo

    I bet the Saints may want RBs and DBs too.

    The Raiders are gonna cut some talented people at both positions this year.

    If I were the Raiders GM, I wouldn’t be scouring the wires, I’d be blowing up the phone lines around the league.

  • Brien

    Wade is better than Grove Dakota…..i can feelyou on not having much better at LT….but McQ played better last season than Green when he got in

  • http://www.car.org KoolKell

    Kifin’s an Idiot:

    Russell’s solid opening drive, which was short-circuited by the first of four Cardinals sacks, gave way to an uneven performance which wasn’t helped by the fact that Kiffin announced his intention to virtually abandon the run and concentrate on passing.

    It was almost as if Kiffin was out to prove to anyone with a pair of eyes why complaints about opening up the offense were off base.

  • Brien

    Wad was replaced by a pro bowler in tampa……..Grove got outdone by a gimp like Newberry

  • Brien

    Kell- kiffin was test ratting the situation but dammit why do a playaction onthe four yard line on 4th down? made zero sense

  • r8dr4lfe

    Curry took to many hits now he’s scared to catch the damn ball starting to drop to many his way.Oh by the way no need to get all vulger im a grown azz man talk to me like 1 no direspect it’s only an opinion mine also counts just like yours

  • Scottish Raider

    The McQuistan situation is bizarre. He did quite well at RT at the end of last season, so why is he stuck at back-up OG, even when Green is obviously struggling?

  • Brien

    post 428? his last two years in oakland werent great because they phased timmy out for 49er bitches but you saw the end result right? god dont like ugly…….the 2002 year was some luck ass shhhhhit and we were physically beat up against tennessee

  • Brien

    Scottish…….its because as everyone says Cable is god

  • Brien

    yeah u can say your opinion all you want but IMO getting Horn will be for nothing because he wont be better than curry and we need the speed we just lost………think logically my friend

  • SC Raider

    I still say we go get K Robinson for returner depth or if JLH craps the bed and to give us some depth @ reciever. Sammie Parker is also available and only 27.

  • Brien

    McQ outta be the RT…….what the phuck Cable!! Green is horrible

  • r8dr4lfe

    Whats speed good for if you wont catch the damn ball ala Jjett i know he did ok at Carolina but Javon did good in Gbay and Denver

  • Brien

    JLH= is fine

  • Dakota


    I agree with that philosophy. Dump Condo, Boone, Reece, Rodd, Irons, Archuleta, Ech, Wand, Wagner, strong and James along with Gray, Pakulak and Otis…they are all worthless or redundant and waiting until the deadline on Saturday will only prevent us from signing players released early by other teams. See, Bill knows what he is doing.

  • Brien

    Deverey Henderson got speed and can catch……..what good is having great hands when you can’t run any damn more? remember last year how we had zero separation on the WR? You want a Walker,Horn, and Curry dynamic huh? boy oh boy

  • Brien

    They cant dump Marcel Reese yet………he isthe backup FB now

  • http://FixtheboldJerry Terrapin

    The Terrapin’s assessment of the team insofar this preseason:

    DEFENSE – The 1st unit defense has dominated each opponent it has faced. THIS is the most important point I can make here and should not go unnoticed. No one has passed successfully on it. Even the mighty Cardinal WR corps has proven unworthy.

    Huff looks at home – has had 2 opportunities for INTs in as many games, on virtually identical intercepts, and cashed in on one. He’s visibly making plays out there.

    Wilson has heightened the level of play on defense exponentially. He will likely eclipse Morrison in tackles – the dude is just everywhere – and that should push Morrison even further to focus more on tackles vs the glamorous INTs. Wilson = the most valuable addition to the defense.

    This secondary is the best in the league but suffers from lack of depth. Nnamdi, Hall, Huff, Wilson, Routt …you can’t get much better than this.

    The run defense looks improved. How much is the main question? TKelly sure looks worthy of the doe. He’ll only get better during the season. Remember he’s coming off injury and still getting into shape.

    We still need another stud NT/DT. Warren and Sands are just not as consistent or diverse in their usage. Diverse in their usage? I’m talking about diversifying the defense by switching to a 3-4 which Rob Ryan has shown he wants to do. Someone needs to be able to play NT. Ideally Sands would fit that mold, which is what he was paid for, but he’s proven to be inconsistent. Warren is just not stout enough for that.

    Another stud LB would help. That goes without saying.

    The pass rush can get better, but I expect a lot of coverage sacks. We are already witnessing “coverage pressure”.

    Depending on how much they’ve improved in the run, this defense could be ranked very highly this season. How high? We’ll see. I don’t see bottom dwellers in their future.

    Offense to come soon….

  • r8dr4lfe

    Well then sounds like pro bowler lets sign him now why wait