Friday, September 07, 2012

Here Come The 2012 Raiders

Here we are again, on the cusp of a new season, and I'm cautiously optimistic. Emphasis on "cautiously." Again...

I'd rather be confidently optimistic. But I'm not there yet. The NFL has become an aerial league (did you see the game on Wednesday night?), and in that department we bet the farm on Carson Palmer, and frankly he still concerns me.

McFadden alone cannot win the West. Palmer and Knapp need to really get after it if we are going to go far.

Our defense needs to get its act together, too. Where is this team truly badass, on either side of the ball? I think our running game is badass. But where else? I hope to find out soon.
Let's face it. Reggie inherited a bare cupboard when it came to the draft. He inherited a team that, if I recall correctly, led the league in being over the salary cap. And he inherited Carson Palmer, courtesy of Hue Jackson. It wasn't like someone gave him the keys to a Maserati.

So it may take time. This season could be a bridge, not a destination.

In the various preseason rankings offered by the so-called "experts," I don't think I've seen the Raiders ranked higher than 18th in the NFL this year, and I saw one that ranked them at 28th.

So this season is a magnificent opportunity to surprise everyone and leave the Raider Haters slack-jawed and numb.

Yes, we had to slash some salaries. Yes we didn't have much to work with in the draft. At the same time, we've been told how excited the defense is to be turned loose. We've been told that Palmer should be improved, now that he's had time to mesh with the team.

So why shouldn't we expect improvement in our record? Why shouldn't this team be better than last year's team?

On that note, I'm going to optimistically predict a 9-7 record, our first winning record in ages, and a viable shot at the playoffs, either as the division winner or a wild card.

I hope we do better. But if we do that, I will consider this season a strong bridge to the long-awaited return to glory.  


21 Comments:

Blogger nyraider said...

Well said, RT.

What I like most is that McKenzie and Allen are savvy and communicative. In this regard, the Raiders (and fans) have already won a long and painful battle.

IMO, for 2012, the foundation simply wasn't there for anyone to expect McKenzie to have immediate success. A record of 9-7 or better will be icing for the cake.

9:12 AM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

9-7 will not get us a playoff spot, unfortunately. I like Carson, I he has the tools to be successful, but he needs to play smart.

The game on Wednesday reminded me a lot of how the Raiders played under Gannon. I think we can get there and be more effective because we have McFadden. A lot of people here in Texas are not sold on Romo, but the difference for Romo on Wed night was his running game. So yes, even though the League wants a more pass-happy offensive attack, you still have to balance that with the run.

I think we have a shot at winning the division. I think we go 10-6 on the year, but with potential to go 12-4. I'm not sold on the Doncos winning the division. A friend of mine who roots for them keeps telling me that Peyton can take a hit. I'm not saying he can't, what I am saying is how many can he take, and how many is he going to take before it takes a toll. Their mistake, they put all their eggs in one basket. Who backs up Manning?

I know we have a lot of injury problems now (especially at WR), but I'd rather work those out now, and have a full roster toward the end of the season. I believe the division is ours to lose. JUST WIN, BABY!


9:22 AM  
Blogger OakTown Blues said...

Nate, NY, Take... 3 for 3, great takes all... I think the Donks and Jolts are toast, KC being the only threat. GO OAK!

9:26 AM  
Anonymous gary said...

From other thread: nyraider said...

Gary - AL's legacy doesn't exist in the current roster.
>>>>

How do you figure? Current starters: Moore, Veldheer, Carlisle, Wiz, Barnes, Myers, DHB, McF, Reese, Shonasty, Seymour, Kelly, Houston, McClain, Huff, Branch. All Al's guys.

That's 16 of 22 starters. Add to that our two pro-bowl ST players.

That's 18 of 24.

I know how much you hate giving Al any credit... but his players are ALL OVER this starting lineup... not to mention the season riding on McFaddens legs holding out... a player only Al wanted.

Jeesh.

11:36 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Gary - that's an old discussion. Do you really want to revisit? Perhaps you could go back and read the thread.

The simple fact is that every team is made up of good and not so good players. McKenzie didn't have the resources to do more with the roster than he did, and none of us know how much more he would have done if he could. As it is, and even with the tweaks he made, the Raiders have very little depth.

Moreover, the players you mentioned have never performed at a high level as a team. It takes more than talent to have a successful NFL franchise.

If this current team makes the leap to a winning record, it will be largely because of the cohesion created by coaching and management that simply didn’t exist before they arrived.

IMO, the Raiders have failed for too long to identify a significant carryover.

Frankly, there has to be some minimal expectation of a professional roster and organizational structure that exists in all professional sports franchises. The Raiders probably just met that threshold last year.

Check Forbes NFL franchise valuations. Raiders are at or near the bottom right now. All this stuff ties together.

Meanwhile, AL's legacy lives strong in the history of the Raiders... it always will. I can embrace that with (and/or for) you.

12:03 PM  
Blogger OakTown Blues said...

It's not a lack of talent, it's attitude and discipline. I'll take 53 mediocre die-hards than 53 uber-talented of the less-hearted and beat you every-single-week. Go Oak.

3:01 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

For anyone interested, here are the bottom five 2012 teams in terms of value posted by Forbes:

Jacksonville ($770 million);
St. Louis Rams ($780 million);
Oakland Raiders ($785 million);
Buffalo Bills ($805 million); and
Atlanta Falcons ($837 million).

Jacksonville valuation is based on 3.25 times its posted revenues.

Comparatively, the Raiders were valued at almost 3.5 times its revenues, which were lower than the Jags.

In terms of revenue, I believe the Raiders are the lowest in the league at $226M

This is the bottom line we seldom discuss.

Cowboys revenues ($500M) more than doubled the Raiders, and supported a valuation of over 4 times revenue... that's upward of $2B.

3:39 PM  
Blogger OakTown Blues said...

...but of these teams, who still plays in the dirt? ;) I dig our value! UnderDawgs.

4:01 PM  
Anonymous Raider00 said...

I am predicting a record of 8-8 this year. This will be a season of transition.

Reggie will need two full drafts and free agent signing periods to shape roster as he wants.

I think we will see the talented, but soft players, Mcfad, Ford, Moore, Mclain, Bey, etc...slowly replaced by players with a more warrior mentality.

I also think the Raiders will transition away from QB Palmer to a QB picked by Reg, and DA.

So, much work yet to be done. This is just the very early stages of the new era.



4:26 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

OO - 8-8? soft players? Really? You might as well jump on board with some of the other Raiders haters.

If McF wins a rushing title, or when Moore leads the Raiders in receiving, or when McClain leads in tackles or sacks, will you still consider them to be soft?

5:39 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Tougher, smarter, more disciplined football players (vice athletes) --this will be how the new era sets it course for sustainable success.

BTW, the last adjective I'd ever use to describe Run DMc is "soft" ... perhaps "unlucky" with his freak injuries but a complete warrior nevertheless.

The "bridge" year (2012) will be IMO a year where the Raiders surprise a lot of fans, media, and opponets. This is the 1st real year where an offensive opponent doesn't know 100% what to expect.

8:06 PM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

Raider00, we win more than 8 games based on less penalties alone! How many games did we lose because of penalties last year? Especially the last 4 games?

Smell that? It's the playoffs Raider Nation. It's ours if we want it. JUST WIN, BABY!

10:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

AngelicRaider

Go Raiders...I just wanna see better football!

12:23 PM  
Anonymous Raider00 said...

NYRaider,

Yes, the players i mentioned are talented but soft.

I say this because when they are on the field, they do perform well.

The problem is, they are hardly ever on the field.

They play in to few games to have an impact on a season.

Maybe soft is to harsh a word. Let's just call them....unlucky.
**********************************

Nate75,

In the AFC west, maybe Raiders can make playoffs with 8 or 9 wins. I'd love to see it.

1:30 PM  
Anonymous gary said...


If this current team makes the leap to a winning record, it will be largely because of the cohesion created by coaching and management that simply didn’t exist before they arrived.
>>>>

I wouldn't argue with that.. Al was not a coaching owner. But still the players exist only because of Al.

If he's as horrible as you are trying to make him out to be the cupboard would be bare.

12:14 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Gary said: "Al was not a coaching owner"

All evidence to the contrary. Funny how you started this discussion by talking about AL's legacy. That statement suggests you don't even know what AL's legacy is.

2:20 PM  
Anonymous gary said...

All evidence to the contrary. Funny how you started this discussion by talking about AL's legacy. That statement suggests you don't even know what AL's legacy is.
>>>>

Well gee whiz.. I will type slower so maybe you can figure out what I meant.

Al cared more about top-line players than coaching. Thus it should be no surprise to anyone that the top-line players are whats left over.

But your hatred of him won't even give him credit for that.

Its kind of sickening.

11:05 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Gary - That's it? That's all you have? You can't spin your way to credibility by calling me an AL-hater.

I never hated AL. To the contrary. My recognizing and/or citing his years of mismanagement is based on hard evidence, namely, the Raiders W-L records (which failures normally lead to GM firings). No need to label yourself a "bigger" fan of AL because you chose to ignore the facts.

You said: "Al cared more about top-line players than coaching"

No. Al cared about coaching, that's why he was so involved. What he didn't seem to care for were his head coaches.

You said: "Thus it should be no surprise to anyone that the top-line players are whats left over."

Really? Are those the top-line players that Raider00 called "soft?" ...the top-line players that failed year after year under previous management (and coaching hires)?

Does AL's legacy include the epic changes made from top to bottom in the organization?

Of course there are some good players left over from AL's regime. Otherwise, the Raiders would be an expansion team in their first season.

12:13 PM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

"Discovered by the Germans in 1904, they named it San Diego, which of course in German means a whale's vagina." -Ron Burgundy, Anchorman!

JUST WIN, BABY!!!!

1:17 PM  
Blogger OakTown Blues said...

Oak WILL take the Div.

1:46 PM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Postgame takes are up.

10:37 PM  

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