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Oakland Raiders News: Regular Season and Preseason Updates
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4/17/14: It is common knowledge that the Oakland Raiders want a new stadium. And they want their own stadium in Oakland, not share one with the 49ers an hour away. Oakland is struggling to find the money for a new venue, and eventually that may lead the Raiders to relocate to L.A. if nothing can be resolved. Help may be on the way in the form of a Dubai prince. When the words Raiders, Dubai prince, and stadium financing are paired in a sentence, it can cause some curious stares. However, even Oakland's mayor has confirmed the possibility of the partnership.
4/10/14: We do not know how the Raiders' season will finish in 2014, but most experts agree that they will not be in the playoffs. While that is yet to be determined, the Raiders look like they are actually in pretty good shape for the next several years. General Manager Reggie McKenzie has done a remarkable job of reshaping the organization from a business standpoint. Oakland's five highest paid players (by average yearly salary) in 2012 were not on the team in 2013. However that led to $55 million in dead money last season. McKenzie's purge gave them $60 million in cap space this offseason, and in a great position to rebuild the team.
4/3/14: The Raiders may have an unusual problem on their hand in the near future. They have not fielded a quality team in several years, so they purged their roster - nothing unusual about that. They also found themselves with an extraordinary amount of salary cap space. They have barely touched it this offseason, even though they have signed several free agents (Maurice Jones-Drew) and traded for a new QB (Matt Schaub). They may find themselves paying under the salary floor, which could put them into trouble with the league and NFLPA. It is not a terrible problem, but a problem nonetheless.
3/27/14: The Oakland Raiders continue to show that they seem to have an allergy to great quarterbacks. In their latest headline-grabbing news, the Raiders traded a late round draft pick to the Houston Texans for embattled QB Matt Schaub. Schaub is not terrible. He is a veteran that has had some success and struggled mightily last season. He can be a decent option, but is not considered elite, or even 'next level down'. This does not mean that the Raiders will not take a QB in the draft, but is just another chapter in hoping they catch lightning in a bottle, rather than draft and develop a top talent.
3/20/14: Interesting week in Oakland. On the first day of free agency, the team signed St. Louis Rams offensive lineman Roger Saffold to a lucrative deal. Then they cancelled the contract as he did not pass a physical. The Raiders, reportedly, were worried about his shoulder. That shoulder injury likely occurred in college and has never had an effect on his play. He has had other injuries that have limited his availability, but not the shoulder. After losing the contract, Saffold was right back in St. Louis. He signed a new contract with the Rams and will be their starting guard for the foreseeable future.
3/13/14: It is always a shame when injuries derail an otherwise promising career. Such is the case with Darren McFadden. The running back has been in the league since being drafted in 2008. He has shown some flashes of brilliance, but has never been able to make it through a 16 game regular season. Indeed, there are scores of fantasy teams that have had their league hopes ruined because their first round pick, McFadden, only showed up for a handful of games. McFadden is now a free agent as the Raiders are moving on to someone more durable or consistent.
3/6/14: The Raiders are now posturing about making a move out of Oakland. The head of the franchise, Mark Davis, claims that Oakland is on its 'last chance' to get them a new stadium. The team's lease expired on the old and dilapidated Coliseum, though Davis agreed to a one year extension as financial backers were brought in. According to Davis, there has been no progress in months, so he is basically giving the city an ultimatum. The team had the opportunity to share the new stadium in San Jose with the 49ers, but that was rejected.
2/27/14: The Oakland Raiders are veterans of drafting near the top of the first round, and it is fair to wonder how they will do this season. Everyone agrees that the team needs a franchise QB because clearly Matt McGloin and Terrelle Pryor are not the answer. Of course, there are three top candidates in Johnny Manzeil, Blake Bortles and Teddy Bridgewater. But the Raiders may have to move up in the draft to ensure they get one of them. St. Louis is an obvious trade partner possibility. The Rams are committed to QB Sam Bradford and are willing to deal their second overall pick. Time will tell if a move happens, but it seems to make sense on paper.
2/20/14: No one doubts Darren McFadden's talent. He is (or at least was) one of the best running backs in the NFL only a few years ago. But that statement comes with a caveat: the dreaded "WH" or "When Healthy". McFadden seems to be chronically injured which means that he eats up a lot of cap space to not play. The Raiders seem likely to release him in the near future and possibly give Rashad Jennings more responsibility. Run DMC will find work elsewhere, but probably not at the same salary and not as the featured back.
2/13/14: And with the fifth pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Oakland Raiders select…. Well, that is anyone's guess at this point. There is no denying they need a quarterback. Or wide receivers. Or a running back. Or help in the secondary. The list goes on. The Raiders have always been a wild card on draft day so there is no telling who they may draft. They also may try to trade up (hello, St. Louis) to get one of the top rated QBs or an offensive lineman or a defensive end. To be fair, that is what makes watching the Raiders' draft so much fun. We still have a couple of months, but let the games begin.
2/6/14: It is no secret that the Raiders have had a lot of misses when it comes to drafting or trading players. The obvious example is taking Jamarcus Russell first overall several years ago and giving him $40 million. There are other examples as well (does Darius Heyward-Bey come to mind with the eighth overall pick?). So it is nice when something works out for Oakland. The Raiders signed Rashad Jennings last offseason to a one year deal. Starting RB Darren McFadden (of course) got injured, and Jennings started eight games. He ran for over 700 yards. He is a free agent now, but wants to stay with the team. Oakland - do yourself a favor and bring him back.
1/30/14: The Raiders do not find themselves in an eviable position. The other three teams in the AFC West (Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, and San Diego Chargers) all made the playoffs. Meanwhile, the Raiders (who are veterans of top 10 picks) find themselves without a viable candidate at QB and chasing everyone else. The Raiders need to decide if they believe that Terrelle Prior or Matt McGloin can be a pro quarterback or if they need to draft one early this year. There is always the opportunity to trade with St. Louis for the second overall pick and land either Teddy Bridgewater, Blake Bortles, or Johnny Manziel.
1/23/14: Oakland is sitting at the number five pick overall in the draft and there is general consensus that the team really needs a franchise QB. There are three certain top-10 QB picks in the draft: Johnny Manzeil from Texas A&M, Blake Bortles from UCF, and Teddy Bridgewater from Louisville. Experts may disagree about the order, but they are considered the top three. However, Houston (No. 1 pick), Jacksonville (#3) and Cleveleand (#4) all need QBs as well. This leads to the obvious speculation that the Raiders may seek out a trade with St. Louis (#2). And the Rams have said they are open for a trade.
1/16/14: It was announced last week that head coach Bruce Allen will keep his job. After another 4-12 season (and there are rumors that the team may change their name to the Oakland 4-12's), owner Mark Davis decided to give Allen another chance to turn the team around. It remains to be seen how good of a coach Allen is, but it is good for the team in general to have some semblance of stability. The Raiders have a top pick in the draft and need a quarterback. It may actually make sense for them to trade up with St. Louis (at No. 2) to ensure one of the best QBs in the draft.
1/9/14: While the rest of the AFC West is in the playoffs, the Raiders are preparing for next season. The top priority should be a new quarterback that can lead them for a decade rather than hope for a veteran fill-in or the unlikely emergence of an undrafted rookie free agent. They also need to protect that QB. The team and left tackle Jared Veldheer seem to be on the same page there. The Raiders want him long-term and he wants to stay. They will probably work out a multi-year extension this offseason, which will make everyone happy.
1/2/14: Oakland finished the season on a down note, losing to Denver in the final game of the regular season. The Raiders now own the fifth overall pick thanks to their 4-12 record. The biggest priority must be getting a franchise quarterback to lead the team for a lengthy period because it is obvious that neither Terrelle Pryor or Matt McGloin is the answer. Dennis Allen survived Black Monday and looks to have at least another year to turn things around. That will be tough, given the Raiders play in the AFC West, where three teams made the playoffs.
12/26/13: The Raiders lost 26-13 to the San Diego Chargers last Sunday, dropping their record to 4-11. There are plenty of questions now of who will be the head coach next season as Dennis Allen appears to be on the hot seat. The news this week is that Terelle Pryor will start on Sunday over Matt McGloin. Pryor's agent says this is a set up and that Allen is hoping that Pryor has a bad game to justify the McGloin move seven weeks ago. Pryor has apologized for his agent. In any case, the tension is building in Oakland and the team may have yet another new coach next season.
12/19/13: With all the speculation on Mike Shanahan and his coaching future in Washington, it is easy to overlook the distinct possibility that the Raiders may be shopping for a new head coach this offseason. The Raiders fell to KC 56-31 last Sunday. There may be solace that they scored 31 points, but giving up 56 - which includes five touchdowns to Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles - is nothing to be proud of. Oakland is simply playing out the string at this point. The Raiders visit sunny San Diego to face the Chargers (7-7) this Sunday.
12/12/13: The Oakland Raiders' season, for all intents and purposes, is over. The Raiders fell 37-27 to the New York Jets for their third consecutive loss. It was also the 13th consecutive loss for the Raiders in the Eastern time zone, so they are happy to get out of there. Marcel Reece got the majority of the running work, as the Raiders' top three running backs are out of commission with injury. He was actually pretty effective, going for 123 yards and a score on the day. Oakland (4-9) host the Kansas City Chiefs (10-3) this Sunday.
12/5/13: Oakland gave undrafted rookie QB Matt McGloin another start, leading his team to Dallas for the traditional Thanksgiving. Day game. McGloin started very strong helped give the Raiders a 21-7 lead early in the second quarter. However, the wheels came off at that point and the Raiders defense gave up the next 24 points. Oakland added a late field goal, but the game was out of reach with the final score being Dallas 31, Oakland 24. Oakland (4-8) has 10 days off before heading back on the road to face the New York Jets in Week 14.
11/28/13: Undrafted Matt McGloin was serviceable in his first NFL start, so the Raiders gave him another shot. Unfortunately, the Titans were ready for him. Oakland lost 23-19 on a last minute touchdown, another loss that will haunt the team. McGloin threw for 260 yards and a score, which is better numbers than some of his more established counterparts did against the Titans defense. But ultimately they could not get into the end zone enough to pull out the win. It will be a short week for Oakland (4-7) as they head to Dallas (6-5) for the second of three Thanksgiving Day games.
11/21/13: They say when you have two quarterbacks you have none. And when you have no quarterbacks, you really have none. The Raiders started undrafted rookie Matt McGloin against the Texans last Sunday, as Terrelle Pryor was out with an injury. McGloin threw for only 197 yards, but did toss three touchdown passes as the Raiders beat the depleted Texans 28-23. McGloin may keep the job, at least for another week, which may spark a quarterback controversy. McGloin has a better arm than Pryor, but Pryor can make more plays on his own. In any case, the Raiders are now 4-6 and host the 4-6 Titans this weekend.
11/14/13: A week after the Raiders allowed Nick Foles to throw an NFL record-tying seven touchdowns against them they had a shot at redemption against the New York Giants. It wasn't to be as the Giants rolled up a 24-20 win, dropping the Raiders to 3-6 on the season. Neither QB was very effective as Terrelle Pryor and Eli Manning combined for less than 300 yards passing. But the Giants' defense made the big plays and even scored a touchdown. Oakland now finds themselves in last place in the AFC West and will look to regroup in Week 11 when they travel to Houston (2-7) who has lost seven straight games.
11/7/13: Hopefully, no one had the Raiders defense on their fantasy team this past week because they would have a lot of negative points. The Raiders were beat down 49-20 by the Philadelphia Eagles last Sunday. Eagles QB Nick Foles had his way with the Oakland defense, notching 406 yards and tying the NFL record for passing touchdowns in a game with seven (and that was in only three quarters). Terrelle Pryor had good numbers, for what it is worth. He had almost 300 yards passing and another 91 on the ground. Oakland (3-5) travels to New York to play the Giants (2-6) this Sunday.
10/31/13: Not many people saw this coming, but the Oakland Raiders took down the Pittsburgh Steelers last Sunday. Oakland typically does not win the week following a bye, but made an exception this season. On the first play from scrimmage, Raiders' QB Terrelle Prior ran for 93 yard touchdown - which is the longest in NFL history by a quarterback. Darren McFadden reminded everyone that he can still be an effective running back with two touchdowns and 73 yards. The Oakland defense took care of the rest as the Raiders won 21-18. Oakland hosts the Philadelphia Eagles this Sunday.
10/24/13: Like the New Orleans Saints, the Raiders had their bye week in Week 7. Unlike the Saints, they are 2-4 and at the bottom of their division. Oakland is pretty much the team that the experts expected this year minus Matt Flynn. It looks like Terrelle Prior has a solid grip on the quarterback position and should not have any challenges barring injury. With the trade deadline approaching, it is possible that the Raiders try to make some moves to build up their draft picks for next year and beyond. Oakland gets back on the field in Week 8 when they host the Steelers.
10/17/13: Everyone understands that Oakland is rebuilding (for the tenth straight year), but many also think the Raiders got a steal in drafting QB Terrelle Prior in the supplemental draft a few years ago. Prior has been pretty good this season, though does need a stronger supporting cast around him. The Raiders visited the Chiefs last Sunday and came away with a 24-7 loss. Prior threw three second half interceptions, which ended any chance of a comeback. The loss puts the Raiders at 2-4 on the season, and miles behind the undefeated Broncos and Chiefs. Oakland has a bye this week and will return in week 8.
10/10/13: Oakland won the latest starting game in NFL history with a 27-17 win over division rival San Diego. The game was moved back to 8:30pm Pacific Time because the Oakland A's had a playoff game against the Detroit Tigers that afternoon. The late start did not bother QB Terrell Prior as he threw a 44 yard touchdown pass on the first play from scrimmage. Oaklands' defense allowed the Chargers to move the ball - San Diego QB Phillip Rivers had over 400 yards passing - but limited them to two TDs and a field goal on the night. Oakland cut QB Matt Flynn the following morning, admitting that mistake pretty quickly. The Raiders (2-3) play at Kansas City (5-0) on Sunday.
10/3/13: QB Matt Flynn finally got another start in the NFL last Sunday. Starter Terrelle Pryor was held out of the game due to concussion suffered the previous week. Flynn started off well. He threw a touch down pass and the Raiders led 14-0 over Washington after one quarter. But that was all the Raiders could muster for the entire day. Washington's defense tightened up and QB Robert Griffin III went to work. Griffin rallied Washington to 24 unanswered points for the 24-14 win. The loss drops the Raiders to 1-3 on the year and last in the AFC West. Oakland hosts division rival San Diego (2-2) on Sunday afternoon.
9/26/13: The Oakland Raiders got a glimpse of prime time NFL football when they visited the Denver Broncos for the Monday Night Game. Unfortunately for the Raiders, they are not quite ready for prime time. Denver took a 17-0 lead before Denarious Moore scored the weekend's longest touchdown - a 73 yard score. Four plays later, Peyton Manning got the lead back to 17 points. Oakland (1-2) ended up losing 37-21 and QB Terrelle Prior suffered a concussion in the loss. He said on Tuesday that he does not have much memory of the game. Oakland will try to rebound in Week 4 when they host 0-3 Washington.
9/19/13: Oakland will not be 0-16 this year as they were able to soundly beat the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars at home 19-9. Oakland was led by QB Terrelle Pryor who had 50 yards on the ground to go with 129 from running back Darren McFadden. Pryor is still learning the QB position and runs at the drop of a hat. For the team to improve, Pryor must become a better passer and better at reading defenses. Still, it is a win which puts the Raiders at 1-1 on the season. Oakland now travels to Denver to face the Broncos in the Monday Night Game.
9/12/13: Expectations are not high in Oakland this season, so maybe there is a moral victory for the Raiders in their 21-17 loss to the Indianapolis Colts. Terrelle Pryor got the nod as the starting QB over offseason acquisition Matt Flynn, and displayed his athleticism. He will get the next start, which is Sunday against the 0-1 Jacksonville Jaguars at home. In other news, the Raiders are trying to secure their own stadium in Oakland, a smallish 58,000 seat venue. The team does not want to share a stadium with the 49ers, and also recognizes that a small stadium will suit them better.
9/4/13: Quarterback Terrelle Pryor is making a strong case to be the starter in Oakland when the season begins. Pryor has displayed amazing athleticism and playmaking ability in his opportunities, and probably deserves a chance to start. Meanwhile, Matt Flynn may be looking at his second consecutive season of going into training camp as the starter only to be overtaken by a more talented athlete. Flynn still has a lot years and money left on his contract, so even if he is the backup, he is not going hungry anytime soon. Makes one wonder if the Packers knew something when they let him walk a couple years ago.
8/29/13: Maybe Matt Flynn is not supposed to be a starting quarterback, and maybe the Packers knew his ceiling and sold him off when his value was at its absolute highest (note to the Seahawks: quit trading with NFC North teams). Regardless, the Oakland QB job is Flynn's to lose, and it looks like he doing just that. Flynn has been unimpressive in preseason games, while Terrelle Pryor has been electric. Prior has more athletic ability, but is very raw. However, if he can move the ball, score a bit, and put some excitement in the Raiders' offense, then there is no reasons he should not get the chance to start this season.
8/22/13: It looks like Matt Flynn will finally get his chance to be a starting quarterback in the NFL. He stood behind Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay for a few years. His one start garnered six touchdown passes and a big contract in Seattle. Then he was beaten out of the job by rookie Russell Wilson. Now with the Raiders, it looks like he will get his chance. He does not have the talent around him that he may be accustomed to, but he should fare decently. After all, Carson Palmer threw for 4,000 yards with the Raiders last year, so there is certainly a chance that Flynn will be a serviceable QB for the team for the next few years.
8/15/13: There has been no formal announcement yet, but it really looks like the starting QB job is Matt Flynn's to lose. No other QB has made any significant strides to displace the presumed starter, and it is not likely that anyone but Flynn will open up the regular season - barring (of course) an injury. The Raiders will need Flynn to recapture the magic he had in his start at Green Bay that yielded a franchise high 6 touchdowns if the Raiders are going to have a chance at competing for a playoff spot this season.
8/8/13: Quick, name the top wide receiver for the Oakland Raiders right now? Most people would guess Heywood-Bay, but the reality is that Rod Streeter may hold that distinction. There has been so much turnover on the Raiders' roster that even die hard fans may have trouble keeping up. In fact, only 17 players remain from the 2010 roster. That is not necessarily a bad thing. The Raiders have not been relevant for a long time, so bringing in new blood cannot make the situation worse. One player that is still there is place kicker Sebastian Janakowski, who recently signed an extension.
8/1/13: Matt Flynn is expected to be the starting QB in Oakland this season - the same way he was expected to be the starting QB in Seattle one year ago. Back then, he was beaten out by third round draft pick rookie Russell Wilson, who went on to lead the team to a playoff birth and set the Seahawks up as a major contender. This time, Flynn will have to beat out rookie Tyler Wilson for the starting job. Flynn now contends that his style and Seahawks' head coach Pete Carroll's style did not mesh well, and he is welcoming the opportunity to prove himself this season.
7/25/13: The Raiders are trying to get a new stadium to replace the current mess they play in. The problem is that they are looking at a smaller stadium, in the area of 50,000 to 56,000 seats, rather than a standard 70,000 seat venue. They would like the NFL to kick in $200 million towards the funding - something the league may do if they can get bigger crowds. Until the Raiders can consistently sell out 70,000 seats, there will be a big problem in the funding of a new stadium in Oakland, and may send the team south to Los Angeles (again).
7/18/13: Raiders running back Darren McFadden remains a bit of mystery even though he has been in the league for a number of years now. No one doubts his talents. He has all the tools to be considered elite - he can run, catch, and block. However, he cannot stay healthy. He missed most of last year with injury, and has missed much of his career, in fact. But like it or not, he is the engine the Raiders need this season. They are deficient of talent at most positions, so they need a strong (and healthy) season from McFadden to cover other blemishes - just like Adrian Peterson last year.
7/11/13: The saga of the biggest bust in draft history is about to end a major chapter. The Raiders and JaMarcus Russell settled on a $3 million buyout of the remainder of his rookie contract which was valued at $68 million including $40 million guaranteed. The Raiders sued Russell to reclaim $10 million and Russell sued the team to get the full value. After six years, the saga is over with the team having paid Russell about $40 million for three largely terrible years of service. Russell, meanwhile, is getting back into shape and is trying to catch on with anyone who will take him.
7/4/13: The Oakland Raiders have been known to make a few bad trades in their day - such as giving up multiple first round picks to the Bengals for QB Carson Palmer. They may have another one on their hands with trading for QB Matt Flynn and his huge and unearned contract. The reason why this may be a bad trade is the possible emergence of rookie QB Tyler Wilson. Flynn and Tyrelle Prior have a total of three NFL starts, so Wilson winning the job outright is not out of the question. If he can learn the system quickly, Flynn will find himself with another clipboard in his hand this coming season.
6/27/13: In the eyes of odds makers, the Raiders are the 15th best team. That is in the AFC, not the whole league. To put it another way, they are second worst team in the AFC, ahead of only the Jacksonville Jaguars. Matt Flynn should be the opening day starter. That is a risk, but the Raiders had to get a QB in place to develop. Flynn had one superb game in Week 17 of the 2011 season. He threw for six touchdowns while with the Packers. The Seahawks quickly signed him to a huge deal, then he was beat out by rookie Russell Wilson last year. Now he is with the Raiders and should be able to hold on to the job.
6/20/13: How long does kicker Sebastian Janikowski have left? He was a first round pick over a decade ago, but is truly ingrained in the lore of the Oakland Raiders at this point. He holds the team record for points and even made a 63 yard field goal - tying for the longest in NFL records. Janikowski says he wants to play several more years, and truth be told, he still has the leg for it. He is also built like a linebacker, so he is not a liability on kickoffs. He will have a new holder this year though, as punter Shane Lechler left for greener pastures.
6/6/13: As it stands right now, Matt Flynn is at the top of the depth chart for the Oakland Raiders. The QB was in the same position a year ago with Seattle, but was beaten out in training camp by rookie Russell Wilson - the sixth QB selected in the 2012 draft. This year, he has competition from Tyler Wilson - a rookie who was the sixth QB selected in the 2013 draft. Flynn has been in the pros for a few years, but only has two starts to his credit. Wilson has a better deep ball, but no experience. Flynn has to be hoping that history does not repeat itself. At least he has a big contract to fall back on.
6/6/13: In the years since former Raiders' owner Al Davis' death, the team has apparently tried to shed its dysfunctional image - the one that makes it the laughingstock of the league. Al's son, Mark, is now in charge of the operation, and many people lauded his moves, such as hiring Reggie McKenzie as GM. In the past two weeks, longtime Raider CEO Amy Trask resigned and now Mark Davis fired Public Relations Director Zak Gilbert - apparently because an unflattering article was written about the organization. It looks like nothing has changed in Oakland, regardless of who owns the team.
5/30/13: Oakland brought back former son Charles Woodson. Woodson was drafted by the Raiders many years ago, and had some good seasons in the Silver and Black. He went on to Green Bay where he became one of the best defensive players in the league. Now he is in the twilight of his career, but still wants to play. He may have lost a step over the years, but he can still be an effective leader in the locker room and on the field. He also can be good for the young Raiders as a role model of how to play the game and be a professional.
5/23/13: Unemployed defensive star Charles Woodson is still looking for an employer for the next season. He has visited a few teams, including the Raiders' arch rival Denver Broncos. There is a good chance, however, that Woodson will return to Oakland. The Raiders drafted Woodson a long, long time ago. He may have made his name in the NFL with the Packers, but Oakland was home. Woodson says that he is willing to go to a rebuilding team - sounds like a guy looking for one last paycheck rather than a guy looking to get one last championship.
5/16/13: It may be hard for both Raiders' lovers and haters to understand, but the team is actually making good moves. However, there has been a bit of a management shake up in the front office. Amy Trask, the NFL's only female chief executive officer resigned last week. Trask is a trailblazer for women sports executives and was very close to the late Al Davis. Unfortunately, Trask and Davis' son (the new owner) were not on the same page, and after 25 years, she decided to call it a day. Hopefully, she will resurface in a similar management position soon.
5/9/13: In probably the most publicized story about a third string quarterback getting cut of all time, the New York Jets parted ways with Tim Tebow - just as everyone expected. Tebow is now a free agent, though his options may be nonexistent if he insists on playing QB. Is there a chance that he could end up in Oakland? If Al Davis was alive then he probably would have already been there. Oakland historically does not mind the distraction and media circus, though this is a new regime. Also, how would the angelic Tebow fit into the Black Hole?
5/2/13: This is certainly not Al Davis' team anymore, its Reggie McKenzie's. The Raiders made a smart trade and picked logically this year. The Raiders held the third pick overall and reportedly wanted University of Houston cornerback D.J. Hayden. Instead of reaching for him at No. 3, they wisely traded down to the Dolphins who took Oregon defensive end Dion Jordan. The Raiders got Hayden at 12, and picked up extra picks in the meantime. Other notable picks included offensive tackle Menelik Watson (Florida State, round 2, No. 10) and quarterback Tyler Wilson (Arkansas, round 4, No. 15).
4/25/13: The Raiders have provided some of the more memorable draft moments, particularly in the past decade or so. Who could forget taking JaMarcus Russell first overall in 2007 and paying him $40 million? He only became the biggest bust in NFL history. But times may be changing in Oakland. General Manager Reggie McKenzie seems to be competent, and not likely to waste the number three pick overall. With Matt Flynn in at QB (most likely), he needs some protection, so assuming that the Chiefs take Luke Joekle number one, then it makes sense for the Raiders to draft offensive tackle Eric Fisher from Central Michigan.
4/18/13: Raiders owner Mark Davis says that the Super Bowl is the only goal Congratulations on such a bold statement. On Davis and 31 other owners would have the guts to make such an announcement. To be fair, the Raiders seem to be on a better track than they have been in the last decade (since they made a Super Bowl appearance in 2002). General manager Reggie McKenzie seems to have brought a semblance of fiscal responsibility, countered by paying players on talent and not just 40 times. Oakland still has a ways to go in the AFC West, but they are improving.
4/11/13: Oakland is in the middle of a three year purge on their roster. Rebuilding this once proud franchise takes patience, and general manager Reggie McKenzie knows it. McKenzie may have the good fortune of working for Mike Davis, the son of Al Davis. Had Al still been in charge, then McKenzie may already have been looking for new work. But the braintrust in Oakland seems to understand that they need to get rid of dead weight and develop through the draft - not free agency. It also helps to draft players on a basis other than a 40 yard dash time.
4/4/13: Oakland has been a busy team this week, trying to make their roster better and shed some dead weight (salary). The Raiders first traded draft picks for Seattle Seahawks backup QB Matt Flynn. Flynn had one sensational game in week 17 of 2011, so of course the Seahawks signed him to a massive contract. Then they found Russell Wilson, so everyone knew that Flynn's days in Seattle were numbered. The team finally traded away QB Carson Palmer who refused a pay cut. Arizona got Palmer, and the Raiders got some salary cap space and a bag full of nothing.
3/28/13: The Raiders made their first offensive move this free agency period by signing offensive tack Alex Barron. Barron was selected in the first round by the St. Louis Rams in 2005, and the team was overjoyed to get the top tackle in the draft that year. Barron was a standout at Florida State University, but never made the adjustment to the NFL. He was constantly flagged for false starts and not knowing the snap count while in St. Louis. Barron has not played in two years. He was out in 2011 with a knee injury and did not make a roster last season.
3/21/13: GM Reggie McKenzie gave the press a predictable sound bite about how the team was excited to add veterans Kaluka Maiava (linebacker), Pat Sims (defensive line) and Tim Hunter (defensive line) to bolster the defense. The rest of the league said "Who"? The Raiders are under some salary cap constraints and do not have much in the way of draft picks after surrendering a king's ransom for Carson Palmer a year and a half ago. Oakland, in all objectiveness, has a ways to go to clear out the roster and salary obligations before they can rebuild and contend in the AFC West.
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3/14/13: The Oakland Raiders are getting around to their spring cleaning by releasing two former top ten picks. Oakland released wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey and safety Michael Huff. DHB was the number seven pick overall in 2009. He never recorded a 1,000 yard season. Huff was the seventh overall pick in 2006 out of the University of Texas. Huff was solid but not spectacular in his Raider days, and was forced in to playing cornerback with all the Raiders' injuries last season. Cutting the two will save the team almost $12 million next season which is much needed cap space.
3/7/13: Oakland, like New England, decided not to use their franchise tag this offseason. Does that make the Raiders organization as smart as the Patriots. Not hardly. But it does prevent the team from overpaying a middle of the road veteran much more than he is worth. The Raiders are still $800,000 over the salary cap (which is remarkable considering how little talent the team has) and really does not have the financial flexibility to give out any big contracts. Actually, it looks like the opposite, with Raiders likely having to cut some big contracts before the start of the season.
2/14/13: If past seasons are any indication, then life will be the same in Oakland next season. That means that they will not be able to score and they will not be able to stop anyone from scoring. Like many other teams, the Raiders need a quarterback. Carson Palmer put up some respectable numbers when he was healthy, but he is not going to lead this team through a rebuilding. Matt Leinart is, well, Matt Leinart. And Terrelle Prior may have talent but there is not enough to go by yet. Additionally, the Raiders need for Darren McFadden to get healthy and stay healthy. He is hurt every year, but is a top running back when he can play.
2/7/13: Oakland has struggled both on the field and with selling out the Coliseum in recent years, so the team made an adjustment to the seating in the stadium to reach the league-mandated sellout rules to get on local TV. 8,000 upper tier seats, known as Mount Davis were added in the mid 1990's. Those have now been removed and ticket prices slashed. The league changed the blackout rules to allow local broadcasts at 85% non-premium seat sellout, and the Raiders hope the new rules and seating arrangement will get more games on the tube next season.
1/31/13: The Raiders have been among the most thunderstruck franchises in the NFL for the past several seasons. Theirs drafts have been memorable only from the standpoint of who they did not take rather than who they got in the first few rounds. A few years ago, they fell in love with the speed of Darius Heyward-Bey rather than Oklahoma State standout Michael Crabrtee. Heyward-Bey has not been a total bust, and Crabtree really only came on in the second half of this year, but still. Most notably, they drafted JaMarcus Russell number 1 overall all and he was a collosal bust. He is now trying a comeback, after cashing the Raiders' $40 million check. But they could have had Colin Kaepernick, twice, in 2011 and passed. Now CK is starting in the Super Bowl and the Raiders are left with Terrelle Pryor and Matt Lienart.
1/24/13: One of the more interesting Super Bowl stories this week is former Raider wide receiver Tim Brown claiming that former head coach Bill Callahan sabotaged the team against the Buccaneers in the Super Bowl several years ago. Apparently, the team had a run-heavy game plan to take advantage of the team's size advantage on the offensive line. However, the game plan was changed at the last minute, and the Raiders only ran 9 times. Tampa won 48-21, and Brown claims Callahan threw the game because he hated the Raiders and was good friends with Tampa head coach John Gruden.
1/17/13: It may be hard to believe, but one of the greatest offensive minds in professional football has been out of the league for a few years now. Mike Martz, best known as the architect behind "The Greatest Show on Turf" has served as a game day analyst on television since being fired by the Bears - ironically, Lovie Smith was the head coach and Martz gave Smith the opportunity to be a defenisive coordinator with the Rams. Martz and the Rams were an offensive juggernaut from 1999-2004, winning one Super Bowl and appearing in another. Now the Raiders have interest in Martz and have interviewed him for their OC job.
1/10/13: Oakland is a franchise known for taking chances and opting for the unconventional route. Case in point was spending heavily in the form of draft picks to acquire Carson Palmer two seasons ago. Palmer has had a mild resurgence in the Black and Silver, but the team has struggled on the whole. When he got injured in Week 16, third string quarterback Terrelle Prior got his first start. Now there are rumblings that Prior may inherit the starting QB job next year. The Raiders are yet to make that move official, but there is a strong chance that it could happen.
1/3/13: Oakland ended yet another difficult season with a thrilling 24-21 loss to the San Diego Chargers. San Diego took a 21-7 lead into the fourth quarter. Terrelle prior, making his first start due to an injury to Carson Palmer, led the Raiders to a pair of late touchdowns. The Chargers, however, were able to hold on for the win. Prior finished the day with 13 completions on 28 attempts, good for 150 yards, 2 TDs, and 1 pick. The good news for the Raiders is that their 4-12 record earned them the third overall pick in the April draft.
12/27/12: Most people did not expect miracles from the Raiders this season, but most did not expect them to struggle to this degree. The Raiders failed to score a touchdown for the second straight week, losing to the surging Carolina Panthers 17-6 in Charlotte. Even worse, quarterback Carson Palmer is out for the last game of the season with a back injury - meaning that the Raiders must decide between former first round pick turned journeyman backup Matt Leinart or college coach career killing because of a free tatoo talent Terrelle Prior for the 2012 season finale.
12/20/12: Oakland earned 25% of their season win total on Sunday with a 15-0 win over the Kansas City Chiefs at home. Carson Palmer was the big arm this week, though he only had 182 yards passing. It was a good week if you had kicker Sebastian Janikowski on your fantasy roster. Janikowski kicked five field goals, including a 50 yarder. Otherwise this was a dull game between two struggling teams that are probably more interested in April's draft. But before the season ends, the Raiders must make a cross country trip to visit the suddenly surging Carolina Panthers on Sunday.
12/13/12: Oakland often gets a prime time game or two, even in down years, simply because of the popularity of the franchise throughout the country. So last week they drew the Thursday game against their division rival Denver Broncos, but the Broncos were far too much for the Raiders to handle. Denver jumped out to a quick 10-0 lead by the end of the first quarter and was up 26-7 by the end of the third. Carson Palmer continued his goods stats on a bad team trend, putting up 273 yards and two touchdowns. Oakland has a good chance for their fourth victory of the season on Sunday when they travel to Kansas City.
12/6/12: Oakland Colosseum is where the Browns 12 game road losing streak began last season, and it was where it ended on Sunday. Oakland is still a rebuilding team, and showed their shortcomings on defense by allowing rookie quarterback Brandon Weeded to throw for 364 yards in a 20-17 loss. There were some high points though. The Raiders did force two interceptions, and Carson Palmer threw for 351 yards and two TDs. But the defense allowed Weeden to engineer a 97 yard touchdown drive in the fourth quarter to ice the game. Oakland has a short week, as they host Denver on Thursday.
9/22/12 ? With the game tied 31-31, Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski nailed a 43-yard field goal with time expiring to give the Oakland Raiders a 34-31 over the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Raiders were able to overcome 384 passing yards and four touchdowns by Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger and the loss of their number one receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey, who was knocked out on a hit by Pittsburgh safety Ryan Mundy. The Raiders scored the final 13 points of the game overcoming a 10-point deficit. Janikowski hit two field goals and Carson Palmer threw a six-yard touchdown pass to Denarius Moore. Palmer finished the day with 209 yards in the air with three touchdown passes. Raiders running back Darren McFadden rushed for 113 yards on 18 carries.
The Raiders have announced they will own their own first round pick for the 2013 NFL Draft. The pick could have gone to the Cincinnati Bengals as part of last season's Carson Palmer trade. The trade originally would have sent either a first or second round pick in 2013 depending on the Raiders performance in 2011 and 2012. Oakland has announced the actual terms of the deal only dealt with performance in 2011. SInce the Raiders did not make the AFC Championship game last season, the 2013 first round pick will now stay in Oakland as the Raiders' second round pick will go to Cincinnati.
Oakland Raiders Tickets - Team History
Aside from a twelve year stint in Los Angeles, the Oakland Raiders have been terrorizing the Bay Area since 1960. Playing their home games in The Coliseum, Raider Nation is known as one of the toughest, most die-hard group of fans in any professional sport. The silver and black faithful are well- versed in tormenting their beloved Raiders opponents, helping make The Coliseum one of the most difficult arenas for NFL teams to visit.
Oakland Raiders Tickets - 2011 Season Info
An 8-8 2010 was a drastic improvement for a team that hadn't won more than 5 games in a season since the Rich Gannon era in 2002, and 2011 just might be even better for the Raiders. The health of running back Darren McFadden, the team's first round pick in 2008, is crucial to a team that ranked second in the league in rushing last season. When healthy, McFadden is a bigger, stronger version of Reggie Bush, capable of breaking games open with his speed and elusiveness. Unlike Bush, however, McFadden can run between the tackles with regularity and shoulder the bulk of the team's carries. The Raiders have struggled with filling the quarterback position since Gannon's retirement. Inconsistencies, injuries, and the dubious selection of former LSU standout JaMarcus Russell first overall in 2007 have plagued the team and weighed the offense down. Currently helmed by veteran Jason Campbell, the Raiders possess dangerous weapons in Jacoby Ford and Darius Heyward-Bey, the surehanded and increasingly reliable Louis Murphy, and a more than serviceable tight end in the rapidly improving Zach Miller.
Oakland Raiders Tickets - 2011 Schedule
Though they have to travel in weeks 1 and 2, the Raiders should be favored to begin their season 2-0, with visits to Denver and Buffalo offering a good chance to start the year on a high note. Back-to-back home games against the Jets and Patriots in weeks 3 and 4 will be a stiffer test, yet it's as good a bet as any that Oakland's faithful will pack the stadium and serve as an effective 12th man for their hometown squad.
Oakland Raiders Tickets - The Players
Jason Campbell is the starting quarterback and has actually been productive compared to his days in Washington. Darren McFadden has been a monster in the backfield and has been carrying the team down the field. Darius Heyward-Bey and Jacoby Ford are young receivers who could develop and be a good target for an underachieving quarterback. The Raiders have one of the worst run defenses in the NFL and with the loss of Nnamdi Asomghua their pass defense just got worse too. We'll see how this young team develops, but as of now the organization cannot live up to Raider Nation expectation.
Oakland Raiders Schedule & Key Dates
Opening Day / Oakland Raiders First Game 2013
Oakland Raiders Regular Season Last Game 2013
Oakland Raiders Preseason Beginning 2013
Dec 15, 2013 Kansas City Chiefs 56 - 31 Oakland Raiders Dec 8, 2013 Oakland Raiders 27 - 37 New York Jets Nov 28, 2013 Oakland Raiders 24 - 31 Dallas Cowboys Nov 24, 2013 Tennessee Titans 23 - 19 Oakland Raiders Nov 17, 2013 Oakland Raiders 28 - 23 Houston Texans Nov 10, 2013 Oakland Raiders 20 - 24 New York Giants Nov 3, 2013 Philadelphia Eagles 49 - 20 Oakland Raiders Oct 27, 2013 Pittsburgh Steelers 18 - 21 Oakland Raiders Oct 13, 2013 Oakland Raiders 7 - 24 Kansas City Chiefs Sep 29, 2013 Washington Redskins 24 - 14 Oakland Raiders Sep 15, 2013 Jacksonville Jaguars 9 - 19 Oakland Raiders Sep 8, 2013 Oakland Raiders 17 - 21 Indianapolis Colts Aug 16, 2013 Preseason: Oakland Raiders 20 - 28 New Orleans Saints
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