State of the Nation: Previewing the 2013 Oakland Raiders

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Jaguars @ Raiders - 2013 Home Opener

The offensive side also got a pick-me up from the free agent acquisition of wide receiver Antonio Brown. After the cold feet and the illegal helmet, it remains to be seen if this is a bang or a fizzle. But they also acquired the services of wide receiver Tyrell Williams as a deep threat and drafted Hunter Renfrow to man the slot. Nelson was responsible for 63 receptions for yards and three touchdowns.

Brown and Williams eclipse the output of Cook and Nelson. Now the question is can quarterback Derek Carr hook-up with his new receiving corps? The solidification of the offense ended with the drafting of Alabama running back Josh Jacobs in the first round.

He can block, catch passes out of the backfield and break tackles. His last year at Alabama he broke As for replacing Cook, it is a work in progress. His highest yardage total came in with the Seattle Seahawks and that was a paltry yards on 22 receptions and three touchdowns. But the Raiders also addressed their defense. How do you make-up for letting Mack go?

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Well you go to free agency and acquire often maligned linebacker Vontaz Burfict , who played seven games last season ending with 50 combined tackles and no sacks. Or look towards Denver and get the services of linebacker Brandon Marshall , who finished last season with 62 combined tackles and zero sacks. Then there is defensive end Benson Mayowa who finished last season in Arizona with 45 combined tackles and four sacks.

Or sign Detroit Lions practice squad defensive end Alex Barrett. Or you could bank on your nine options in the NFL draft. The Raiders had nine draft picks, all but three went defense, with a Clemson Tigers influence. The fourth pick of the draft, they selected Clelin Ferrell , defensive end out of Clemson.

Ferrell is good. He is the recipient of the Ted Hendricks Award for the nations top defensive end, and he finished his career with 27 sacks. But the eternal question will be is he better than Josh Allen who the Raiders left sitting on the board. The next step was to upgrade a secondary that only hauled in 10 interceptions and was ranked 31st by Pro Football Focus.

It began in free agency with the signing of Lamarcus Joyner. Joyner is a three down player who will switch up where he plays, but most likely will roam the slot.

San Diego State

Curtis Riley coming over from the New York Giants, last season had four interceptions and 87 tackles, while Jordon Richards may be playing for a spot, especially with the drafting of Johnathan Abram , from Mississippi State. The hard hitting safety has been getting nothing but adulation. Clemson cornerback Trayvon Mullen drafted in the second round is dealing with an undisclosed injury and has not yet seen the field. The Raiders upgraded in every area, although when you are 4—12 there is almost nowhere to go but up.

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Carr: even with the upgrade in weapons, Carr is the 24th quarterback off the board. Going as late as 16th round behind the likes of Sam Darnold and Josh Allen. He has all the necessary talent around him. Get him late if you can, he can be the surprise of the season, especially with his current ADP.

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Jacobs: Huge upside. He has less mileage on him than most backs coming out of college.

He is a decent blocker and can catch passes out of the backfield. And he runs through tackles. The wide receiving weapons will not allow teams to stack the box. Downside can he withstand the punishment of an NFL season. Will Doug Martin cut into his carries and Jalen Richards will most definitely be in for passing downs.

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However he has some flaws. His decision making last year was really bad. He is a really good inline blocker who will be able to help in that regard right away. He needs to improve his receiving ability, but he shows deceptive speed on the field as well. Murray is one of those big running backs that comes out and shows great speed at their pro day.

Darren McFadden

From the moment Reggie McKenzie took the reins of the Oakland Raiders on January 5, he made moves that ticked off the Raider Nation. McKenzie. [BOOKS] State of the Nation: Previewing the Oakland Raiders by Jorge Contreras. Book file. PDF easily for everyone and every device. You can download.

At his pro day he showed great athleticism running his 40 yard dash in 4. Rivera is the receiving tight end to go along with the blocking one they got earlier in Kasa. Rivera has good hands and is a tough receiver. He moves the chains consistently. He has talent however, has yet to put it together. Butler has good size and had an outstanding pro day.

He ran a 4. Showed his pass rush ability at the East-West Shrine game. Was an extremely productive player and pass rusher at Missouri Western. The big question is can he do it against better competition. The Raiders had a solid draft.

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It might have been a little early for Hayden with his injury history, but his talent is undeniable. Watson is a good value in the 2nd and really fits a need, though pretty much any position fits a need. Sio Moore is an absolute steal and will make an immediate impact on that defense. Kasa and Rivera will give the Raiders 2 very different options at the tight end position. Murray could end up being a contributor by the middle of the year, especially if Darren McFadden gets hurt again. Follow bmeek