Part of the Bay Area News Group

State of the Raiders … for now

By Steve Corkran
Thursday, March 29th, 2012 at 5:56 pm in Oakland Raiders.

Raiders coach Dennis Allen and general manager Reggie McKenzie are of the belief that they have enough talent on their roster as it stands to compete for a Super Bowl title this season.

Naturally, that remains to be seen. Also, what else are they going to say? Time will tell. What’s certain is that the Raiders roster for the 2012 season will be comprised mostly of players currently under contract.
The Raiders have five selections in the upcoming NFL draft, and they still figure to add a handful more players through veteran free agency, as well as undrafted free agents.
So, things can change in a hurry. In the interim, let’s take a look at where the Raiders stand after more the first two weeks of free agency and a slew of offseason moves that included the purging of 2011 opening-game starters Stanford Routt, Chris Johnson, Samson Satele, Kamerion Wimbley, Jason Campbell, Chaz Schilens and Quentin Groves through outright release or free agency.
This is what awaits Allen next week, when he and his coaching staff are permitted to work with their players for the first time this season.

Quarterback
Who’s here: Carson Palmer, Terrelle Pryor, Rhett Bomar
Who’s gone: Jason Campbell, Kyle Boller
What’s needed: Pryor hasn’t taken a snap in an NFL regular-season game and spent most of his rookie season adjusting to the NFL. Romar has yet to play in a real game, either. Therefore, it’s likely that the Raiders will address the need for a backup to Palmer by signing a veteran free agent before training camp.

Running back
Who’s here: Darren McFadden, Taiwan Jones, Lonyae Miller, Rashawn Jackson
Who’s gone: Michael Bush, Rock Cartwright
What’s needed: The Raiders are set at running back if Allen and McKenzie feel as if Jones is ready for a heightened role. McFadden is expected to be the workhorse once again after missing most of the final 10 games with a sprained foot. Jones played only sparingly as a rookie, yet he showed during training camp and exhibition games that he can be effective as a complementary back.

Fullback
Who’s here: Marcel Reece, Manase Tonga
Who’s gone: No one
What’s needed: Nothing

Tight end
Who’s here: Brandon Myers, David Ausberry, Richard Gordon
Who’s gone: Kevin Boss
What’s needed: McKenzie jettisoned Boss one season into a four-year contract. That leaves him without a proven player as his starter. It’s conceivable that Myers or Ausberry can blossom into the role this season. Still, it says here that McKenzie will keep searching for a veteran to hold down the spot filled by Boss last season until he is comfortable with one of his younger players.

Wide receiver
Who’s here: Darrius Heyward-Bey, Denarius Moore, Jacoby Ford, Louis Murphy, Eddie McGee
Who’s gone: Chaz Schilens, T.J. Houshmandzadeh
What’s needed: Heyward-Bey, Moore and Ford played well, at times, last season, especially when they weren’t hurt. However, none has emerged as a No. 1-type receiver yet. The hope is, that one or more of them will do this season. That leaves the Raiders in the market for depth in light of the departure of Schilens to the Jets and Houshmandzadeh not being re-signed.

Offensive line
Who’s here: Jared Veldheer, Stefen Wisniewski, Cooper Carlisle, Mike Brisiel, Khalif Barnes, Joseph Barksdale, Bruce Campbell, Zach Hurd, Alex Parsons
Who’s gone: Samson Satele, Stephon Heyer
What’s needed: Losing Satele to the Colts via free agency became a non-issue once the Raiders signed Brisiel to a multi-year contract. Brisiel’s arrival frees up Wisniewski to slide from left guard to center. The Raiders also re-signed Barnes and Carlisle in moves that ensured the Raiders offensive line would return intact, with the exception of Satele. Barksdale and Campbell are expected to compete for starting jobs in training camp. Hurd and Parsons provide added depth and options. This isn’t a unit that needs much help, if any, moving forward.

Defensive line
Who’s here: Matt Shaughnessy, Richard Seymour, Tommy Kelly, Lamarr Houston, Desmond Bryant, Jamie Cumbie, Mason Brodine, Travis Ivey, Hall Davis
Who’s gone: Jarvis Moss, John Henderson, Trevor Scott
What’s needed: The Raiders let walk Scott, and they haven’t made any move to bring back Moss. They tendered a one-year contract to Bryant, who is expected to play an even bigger role than he did last season, when he filled in for the injured Shaughnessy for most of the season. All four starters are back. However, the Raiders are without a proven nose tackle, which they will need if they intend to play a 3-4 scheme. Ivey and Bryant are prime candidates if the Raiders can’t find, or afford, a veteran free agent.

Linebackers
Who’s here: Aaron Curry, Rolando McClain, Travis Goethel, Carl Ihenacho,
Who’s gone: Kamerion Wimbley, Darryl Blackstock, Quentin Groves
What’s needed: McKenzie said he still wants to add an outside linebacker. That makes perfect sense, given the departure of Wimbley to the Tennessee Titans via free agency. Curry and McClain finished the season as starters last year. Even so, this is the unit that poses the biggest question mark heading into training camp. Look for one or more linebacker to be added, be it in free agency of the NFL draft.

Defensive backs
Who’s here: Chimdi Chekwa, DeMarcus Van Dyke, Michael Huff, Tyvon Branch, Mike Mitchell, Bryan McCann, Ron Bartell, Shawntae Spencer, Brandon Underwood, Curtis Taylor, Pat Lee, Terrail Lambert
Who’s gone: Stanford Routt, Chris Johnson, Lito Sheppard, Matt Giordano, Jerome Boyd
What’s needed: The Raiders canned Routt and Johnson. In response, they signed veterans Bartell, Spencer, Underwood and Lee. Before you feel comfortable with any two of the candidates as starters, consider the Raiders finished the 2010 season with Nnamdi Asomugha and Routt as the starters. It’s time for someone to emerge as a front-line player from this group.

Specialists
Who’s here: Sebastian Janikowski, Shane Lechler, Jon Condo
Who’s gone: Rock Cartwright
What’s needed: Perhaps another core special-teamer who can replace Cartwright. Kassim Osgood would be a great fit here. Beyond that, the Raiders still boast one of the best specialists trio in the league.

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  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Correction: we have to manage not giving the division away like we did the last 2 years, and then we can talk Play-Offs. Play-Offs?!

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Vegas,

    Produce in that sentence means results and not team.

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Product*

  • Just Fire Baby

    10 wins should win our division this year, as long as we do well within the division.

    Maybe even 9, but tiebreakers would probably be involved.

    I don’t see the Dolts doing anything other than what they normally do, the Chiefs still have issues and the worst QB in the division, and Peyton just doesn’t scare me enough to grant them 10-11 wins, with their schedule.

  • Nnamdi21

    Hue who? Moving on…

  • Just Fire Baby

    If we sign TO, ROG might just blow a gasket.

    I don’t think we NEED to do that, but if we signed TO, we are buying him dirt cheap, so at least that is a plus.

  • mcfadden20.

    http://www.nfl.com/features/bracketology/alltimeteams?module=HP11_hot_topics


    keep voting guys, we’re slightly leading , lets increase our lead , only 4 more hours to go

  • http://InsidetheOaklandRaiders Goldie7

    Just Fire Baby Says:
    March 30th, 2012 at 9:35 am
    Compete for a SB?

    You got to crawl before you ball.

    I will take winning the division as a major first-step
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Very true JFB. My problems are….we have holes in our roster and I don’t see us defeating the Donkeys. What’s our answer for Peyton Manning.

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Hue had to sell himself to Al, the team, the media, and the fans. He did that very well, but people discovered that he was all talk and no results.

    Even a great salesman can’t last without a good product/ results.

    I know a lot of good salesmen that refuse to work for Fiat. Why? You can be a great salesman, but to be successful, you need to have a solid product/ results.

    Does that make more sense?

  • Nnamdi21

    If Manning’s healthy (and he is) he’ll do what he’s always done, throw for 4,000 yds and 20+ TDs.

    The draft hasn’t even happened yet KC and Denver have gotten markedly better.

    Reggie’s gutted the team Al built and truth out, if DMC, Ford or Moore had stayed healthy we’d have made the playoffs easy (yes, even withour D. Look at Green Bay and New Englands D!)

    Now thanks to Reggies make over we could be looking at a 3-5 yr plan.

    Wonder how many losses it will take for the Nation to rebel?

    After 10 yrs of losing, my bet is not long…

  • guest123

    Eagles lost OT Jason Peters, ruptured achilles. Looks like he’s done for the season.

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Btw, my friend is the GSM of Fiat in SD. Let me know if you guys want an Italian car.

  • mcfadden20.

    We had good starters at many positions but we had no freaking depth anywhere besides the RB position, heck we had to trade for a freaking QB mid-season ,because the 2nd string should be in UFL,plus that freaking genius D coordinator we had didn’t help either

  • Gdog

    Reece is not a running threat out the backfield as a tailback
    >>>>

    Huh?

    Why do you say this?

    Hue never gave him the ball, but he averaged 6.6 yards a carry, and looked much faster hitting the holes in comparison to Bush. I wouldn’t be surprised if he switches to RB, and we draft a fullback.

  • mcfadden20.

    We needed alot of our skill guys to stay healthy to win more games last year because we didn’t have anybody good backing them up , so we did pretty good finishing 8-8 considering all those factors

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Why do You People keep saying Reggie gutted the team?! We released 2 players. 2 players!!
    Routt gave up a lot of TDs and led the team in penalties, and Wimbley had less sacks than TK, but he was due $11 million.

  • Nnamdi21

    Hue’s problem was he told the media the truth. Reg and co. are infinfitely smarter than that.

    They practice and feed the media sterilized balndishments and barf making nonsensical politi-speak which they in turn gobble up as if it means something.

    Cork and Mac (omg, its a new crime fighting duo on FOX this spring!) give the ole wink and nudge to us on occasion but they work for the man so they can’t outright call BS.

    I am.

    No one can really say our team is better right now than it was at the end of last season.

    Reggie and Allen might try to convince you other wise but the fact is, we gutted the team of starters (blame Al for lopsided contracts whatever, he was NEVER over cap.) not only of players but coaches. (Woodsen deserved at least another season)

    While our rivals get stronger Reggie dismantles everything Davis ever did.

    Like Mustaine said: “If theres a new way, I’ll be the first in line, but it better work this time…”

  • mcfadden20.

    Raider O Says:
    March 30th, 2012 at 9:52 am

    Why do You People keep saying Reggie gutted the team?! We released 2 players. 2 players!!
    Routt gave up a lot of TDs and led the team in penalties, and Wimbley had less sacks than TK, but he was due $11 million.


    Exactly

  • fingers

    Bspn wouldn’t say anything good about any Raider business of everysingle one of the nation won the power ball lottery… They just can’t do it…fk ‘m..

  • fingers

    If everysingle …

  • mcfadden20.

    How the eff do the Raiders have only like 150,000 followers on twitter, while teams like Ravens have as many and Dallas like 200,000 n Pats have as 2x times as many as us.. Are you telling me there are same amount of Ravens fans as us? more Cowboys fans and 2 times more Patriots fans

  • fingers

    Reggie’s doing the best he can with our situation being what it is……we will compete in the upcoming season….

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    I hate twitter.

  • Nnamdi21

    Raider O Says:
    March 30th, 2012 at 9:52 am
    Why do You People keep saying Reggie gutted the team?! We released 2 players. 2 players!!
    Routt gave up a lot of TDs and led the team in penalties, and Wimbley had less sacks than TK, but he was due $11 million.

    ==============

    Campbell

    Bush

    Wimbley

    Routt

    Eugene

    Johnson

    Henderson

    Boss

  • mcfadden20.

    fingers Says:
    March 30th, 2012 at 9:55 am

    Bspn wouldn’t say anything good about any Raider business of everysingle one of the nation won the power ball lottery… They j

    Who cares we don’t need them to compliment us for us to know if we’re doing good or bad, lets vote and win the greatest team ever award n lets support our team to a great season this year, they might not say anything but it still kills them inside when we’re doing good ..

  • RaiderRockstar

    Eagles lost OT Jason Peters, ruptured achilles. Looks like he’s done for the season.

    ***

    @G123

    trade Bruce Campbell to Philly for a 6th rounder!

  • mcfadden20.

    http://www.nfl.com/features/bracketology/alltimeteams?module=HP11_hot_topics

    only 4 hours to go n we’re tied , need all the support , make every vote count

  • fingers

    Reggie dumped a lot of the contracts that Bspn dumped on the Raiders for during the last Decade…. We’re gonna be fine …

  • Nnamdi21

    323. Fug twitter. Talk about inaccurate. Best to come here for the real deal. So what if it takes an extra 15 mins if its right?

  • mcfadden20.

    Raider O Says:
    March 30th, 2012 at 9:58 am

    I hate twitter.


    Me too, i have all this Social stuff, bunch of kiddies/.. but still it’s crazy they have more followers than Raider Nation .. i mean no way anybody have more fans than us , besides the Cowboys when everybody jumped on their Bandwagon in 90′s

  • RaiderRetribution

    O, you need to go back to school; although I agree with your premise. Reggie only cut/released players who were not productive:
    Routt,
    Johnson,
    Wimbley,
    Boss,
    Henderson, that makes five off the top of my head that were released, most others were free agents anyway, of whom Reggie is not resigning anyway.

  • mcfadden20.

    I hate **^^ not i have

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    Rhett Bomar?
    Wasn’t he ranked as number#1 high school QB?

  • fingers

    I’ve voted for the 76 team…. That was a great team … And they beat a very good Vikings team…. I saw it live In Pasadena ..

  • Macho Man Randy Savage

    Odds Bruce Campbell makes Reggie Mac’s training camp cuts? Someone tell Bruce his “Sam Williams Scholarship” is over…

  • raidertbone

    Twitter is for the Kim Kardashians of the world who can’t achieve fame any other way!

  • mcfadden20.

    fingers Says:
    March 30th, 2012 at 10:02 am

    I’ve voted for the 76 team…. That was a great team … And they beat a very good Vikings team…. I saw it live In Pasadena ..

    Keep on voting bro , its still tied n they will stop votes at 2 , so let’s keep voting ..

    GO Nation

  • fingers

    Campbell needs to step up… I’m pulling for him….if he doesn’t make it this year , he’s gone

  • Calirock83

    http://www.nfl.com/features/bracketology/alltimeteams

    just voted a Sh*t load of times … ’76 Raiders Vs ’00 Ravens .. Currently tied at 50%.. 5 hours left to vote greatest team of all time..Lets go Nation !! Raiders all day!!

  • mcfadden20.

    http://www.nfl.com/features/bracketology/alltimeteams?module=HP11_hot_topics

    KEEP VOTING for the best team ever, and show them we’re the best fans in the world

  • DutchRaider77

    I’ve voted for the 76 team…. That was a great team … And they beat a very good Vikings team…. I saw it live In Pasadena ..

    _____________________________________________________

    Wasn’t the 1976 AFC championship game the bigger game? From the accounts I read the Raiders handled the Vikings?

  • mcfadden20.

    Ok, were at 51% now .. good job

  • RaiderRetribution

    Campbell and Bush were UFAs, Eugene was cut.
    Hue is the reason Jason did not resign with our Raiders.

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Campbell

    Bush

    Wimbley

    Routt

    Eugene

    Johnson

    Henderson

    Boss
    $$$$$$$$$$$$

    Are you serious?
    -Campbell was a FA, and we have Palmer who is a better QB.
    -Bush was a great backup, but he was a FA too.
    -Wimbley was released cause he was due $11 million, and he had less sacks than TK. We pickup guys in the 6th RD like T Scott who can produce and have produced as many sacks in a single season.
    - Routt gave up 8-10 TDs, led the team in penalties, and was one if the highest paid CBs.
    -Eugene: a ST player who was injured the entire season?!
    -Henderson: a 33 yo DT that can’t stay healthy?!
    -Boss: the guy played less snaps than all the other TEs.

    You ate entitled to your opinion, but I don’t see the logic behind it.

  • mcfadden20.

    Let’s keep voting, their not going to stop voting for their team , so why should we stop, still 4 more hours left.. lets finish em off

  • Nnamdi21

    I’m so sick to f’ing death of that bullsh*t bracketologoy racket. They’re only jacking your adressess so they can spam you. You’re personal info is the hottest money maker for most corporations.

    Info is the new oil…

    Plus, whats it all come down to? WHO CARES?!

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    O, you need to go back to school
    $$$$$$$$

    Interesting. Why?

  • fingers

    Dutch… Their was never any doubt once that game ( Vikings) started….. The biggest disappointment that day was the concession stands ran out of beer by Halftime…. We we’re tanked anyway so had a great time ..

  • Nnamdi21

    344. Naw brah, caught me sideways.

    U asked why people kept saying Reggie gutted the team.

    I didn’t say the cuts / drops were wrong at all.

  • mcfadden20.

    Nnamdi21 Says:
    March 30th, 2012 at 10:09 am

    I’m so sick to f’ing death of that bullsh*t bracketologoy racket. They’re only jacking your adressess so they can spam you. You’re personal info is the hottest money maker for most corporations.

    Info is the new oil…

    Plus, whats it all come down to? WHO CARES?!

    REAL RAIDERS FANS care