Oakland Raiders 2008 NFL Projection:
Let's get this straight... The Raiders signed Justin Fargas to a deal, at the time of the draft they had LaMont Jordan as a backup, and Michael Bush is healed from his broken leg.
So how did they help their team with the one pick they had in the first three rounds of the NFL draft?
They took another running back. While Darren McFadden might have been the "sexy pick", was he the necessary pick for the 2008 Oakland Raiders?
After all, the Raiders were 6th in the league last season in rushing offense. Just how much better do they feel they need to be in that category?
Wouldn't it have been more prudent to use the pick on a defensive tackle to help shore up a run defense that finished 31st in the prior campaign?
Or perhaps use the selection to grab a left tackle to take over for Barry Simms to help ensure all those RB's already on the roster might continue to have some holes to
Not all is lost. There have been a few solid moves during the Raider's off-season.
The additions of Gibril Wilson and DeAngelo Hall bolster an already solid pass defense.
Hall will allow the Raiders to play more man to man coverage, while Wilson can help defend the run.
As for wild cards in Oakland's season, they are going to be the play of
JaMarcus Russell, Javon Walker, and Tommy Kelly. If the Raiders can get respectable performances from all three of these
question marks, then the team will surely turn in a much better record than in recent seasons. However, we think the jury is still out.
A look at Oakland's 2008 schedule
reveals just four games versus teams that made the playoffs last season;
Overall the Raiders have the third easiest strength of schedule in the league. It should be noted that last season Oakland posted a (4-6)
mark against non-playoff teams.
The Raiders should be able to put forth a decent running attack, while also playing solid enough defense against the pass
to at least match last season's win total... But unless JaMarcus Russell to Javon Walker pans out, then last season's win total
might not be eclipsed by much.
Overall we're penciling in the Raiders for a repeat of the (4-12) mark in 2008, good for 3rd place in the AFC West.
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Free 2008 NFL Predictions Note:
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