Pillagers, Mount Up! Our favorite sport is finally BACK! After blogging about football, politics, MMA, baseball and anything else, we can now focus our energy on what matters to us most: Our Raiders!
This year, our offense can be the best offense in the league. We’ve locked up our hero #4 , along with Gabe Jackson. The former is one who solidifies the middle of one of, if not the best, offensive lines in the NFL. Last year we finished 6th in total offense. This year we have improved the TE, RB, and WR positions. Let’s touch base on each:
TE: Ever since Clive Walford was drafted a few years ago, he hasn’t showed us his full potential on the field. Each year he has come into camp with injury concerns.
Enter former Green Bay Packer TE: Jared Cook. Even though he missed 6 games last year, Cook managed 31 catches, 400+ yards and 2 TD’s over the course of his last 3 regular season games and the ensuing playoffs. Prior to playing with A-Rod last year, he has never played with a top flight QB like Carr.
The sky is the limit and the middle of the field is ripe with opportunity. It also sounds like Walford is poised to enter the season in shape. Add Lee who got injured early last year, and all of a sudden, the TE position looks dangerous, and deep!
WR: This is arguably the most talented and deepest position we have on our squad. Amari Cooper is the guy that is poised to take his game to another level, however. Though he has had 2-1000 yard seasons to start his career, he really has not found the end zone as much as you would think for a guy this talented.
This year, he showed up to camp having bulked up and looking much stronger. Hopefully he can finish the year strong as his numbers have typically faded during the second half of each season.
Crabtree will continue to be solid, and hopefully some of the drops he had last year can be charged to a late season finger injury that is now healed. Expect Crabs to continue to be clutch in 2017.
Now, the addition of Patterson is intriguing. He hasn’t played with a top flight QB so maybe this is the year he shows his talent as a WR and pushes Seth Roberts. I know Roberts makes big catches, especially TD’s but has shown a penchant for dropping way too many passes. This should be a year long battle for the #3 WR spot.
RB: I know some are sad we lost Tay Train (Kenny Stapler: “Who?”), while some didn’t feel he was worth a big payday. 2016 additions Washington and Richard should only improve this year over their already impressive breakout performances last year.
The big addition of course is Beast Mode. Coming back after taking a full season off, can he bring the thunder we expect from Marshawn? If he can be 80% of his former self, he can take this offense over the top and make it the best in the League.
Of course everything is dependent on #4. Is he mentally healed from that Christmas Eve ankle break? Will the big payday add extra stress and pressure? Fear not. This guy, as we all know, has proven each and every year to get better and better.
Hopefully we don’t need 7 game-winning comeback drives from him this year. I think we will be winning more games by double digits as we now have way too many weapons. You can’t just double Cooper anymore as the TE position will make over-aggressive defenses pay. There may not be a defense that can hold us under 30 points all year. Pray that our defense improves and we should see an “Offensive Juggernaut.”
Football is back and balance has been restored to Raider Nation!
Written by: 303Raider
Edited by: Kenny Stapler