4th in AFC West
The Raiders offense looks like it could be one of the worst in NFL history. Behind center, Terrelle Pryor will be starting at quarterback for the second time in his career. Although Pryor has the physical skill set to be good, he does not have an accurate arm and is not ready to play at the highest level. Unlike other young quarterbacks, Pryor has no weapons on the outside. The two wide receivers are Denarious Moore and Rod Streater and they combined to record 1200 yards of offense last year. Although they have speed, they should not be playing significant minutes for a NFL team at wide receiver. The tight end does not put fear into any defensive coordinators either. The current starter is Jeron Mastrud because their real starter is out with an injury. Jeron has recorded 1 catch for 8 yards during his four year career. The Raiders will have a very difficult time throwing the ball this seasons. The Raiders will be forced to rely upon running back Darren McFadden to carry the load and score touchdowns. However, McFadden is extremely injury prone and cannot take the rigors of a full NFL schedule. Darren has never played more than 13 games in a season or rush for 1200 yards. When McFadden eventually injures himself, the Raiders will be in a lot of trouble because they have no talent besides for him. McFadden will get a lot of touches and touchdowns early because no other player has home run ability. (Fantasy note: Keep McFadden for the first 9 or 10 weeks and trade him if his value is high)
On defense, the Raiders will be hoping that their players will be able to mesh together and play average defense. The Raiders are starting 9 new members of the defense, but only one is a rookie. Last season, the Raiders were ranked 18th in the league in total defense. However, they lost a lot of talent and pass rushing ability. The Raiders improved their pass defense but the front seven looks really bad. Besides for Kevin Burnett and Nick Roach, Oakland is full of unheard of players, who have little talent and experience in the NFL. The front four of Jason Hunter, Lamarr Houston, Vance Walker, and Pat Sims strike little fear into quarterbacks. This group shows like they have no ability to rush the passer. Their deficiencies will prove costly against teams with good quarterbacks because they will eventually find an open receiver for big plays. The best part of the Raiders defense is their secondary. They start Tracy Porter, Tyvee Branch, Charles Woodson, and Mike Jenkins. The secondary has a lot of talent and should provide a lot of turnovers and pass deflections. The secondary will be helped by rookie back up DJ Hayden. The first round pick has a lot of skill and speed, when he is healthy and on the field. If the front four of the Raiders can provide any push and apply pressure, the defense will significantly improve because ball hawks like Woodson and Porter will force turnovers for the lackluster defense.
@Indianapolis Colts – The young quarterback, Andrew Luck, has been waiting for this game for the last 8 months. Luck will abuse the Raiders defense. The defense will not be ready for the challenge and will not be playing together as a unit. Luck should be able to exploit them for some big plays and win the game.
Jacksonville Jaguars – The Raiders play their first game in the black hole against a bad Jaguars team. The Raiders should be motivated to please the crowd and play hard to win the game. Gabbert does not have the experience or skill to fully take advantage of the Raiders defense.
@Denver Broncos – The Broncos look like they are on a mission this season to win the Super Bowl. Manning will pick apart the Raiders defense and put up major numbers. The game should be a blow out win for the Denver Broncos at home.
Washington Redskins – The Raiders will have a difficult time stopping the running attack of the Redskins. When Griffin has time, he is an accurate thrower and can throw the ball down the field. Griffin will also be able to run all over the poor Raiders defense and win the game.
San Diego Chargers – The Raiders will have a chance of winning this game at home. However, I believe that the Chargers defense and Phillip Rivers will lead San Diego to a win on the road in the black hole. The Raiders should be playing better football so the game should be close.
@Kansas City Chiefs – The Chiefs are a talented team that finally have a quality coach and quarterback. The Chiefs offense looks like it is complete, which will give problems to the Raiders. Pryor will have difficulty playing against the good Kansas City defense.
Pittsburgh Steelers – The Raiders return home after the bye to play the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers will be determined to beat the Raiders because they upset the Steelers last season. If Roethlisberger is healthy, the Raiders will be unable to score enough points to match the Steelers offensive approach.
Philadelphia Eagles – Although the Eagles will not be a great team, their speed and talent on offense should give the Raiders problems on defense. On offense, McFadden will begin to break down because of the wear and tear that he will accumulate through the first nine weeks of the season.
@New York Giants – The Raiders will be forced to travel across the country and play one of the best teams in football at an early time, 1:00PM or 10:00AM Pacific. The trip is hard for veteran team so I do believe that the long distance flight and time difference will affect the players. This game may become ugly quickly for the Raiders.
@Houston Texans – The Texans are a really good all round team. The Texans have a lot of talent and speed that the Raiders will not be able to match on the road. JJ Watt is a dynamic player and should take over the game because the Oakland offensive line will be unable to block him.
Tennessee Titans – The Raiders will be returning home after two tough weeks and should play good football. If McFadden is running the football effectively and Pryor gains experience, the Raiders may be able to pull off the win against a poor Titans’ team.
@Dallas Cowboys – The Raiders have to go back on the road and play a talented Cowboys team. The Boys will need all the wins that they can achieve if they want to make the playoffs. Although they will be under huge pressure in this game, Romo should be able to dismantle the Raiders D.
@New York Jets – This game could be one of the worst game in the season in the NFL. The teams are similar because their offenses are really really bad. However, the Jets defense should be solid and shut down Terrelle Pryor and the Raiders offense. The Raiders do have a chance to win this game.
Kansas City Chiefs – The Raiders finish the season against three divisional teams. The Chiefs will be fighting for their playoffs lives. The Chiefs will desperately need this win to stay in the playoff hunt. Although many of the players have not been in this situation, Reid will lead the Chiefs to a win.
@San Diego Chargers – The Chargers are a good team especially at home. Rivers will probably throw all over the Oakland defense. The Raiders have a chance in this game, but I think the Chargers will score a late touchdown to win the game.
Denver Broncos – The Raiders have to hope that they will sit all of their players since they will already be in the playoffs. The Broncos look like they are on a mission this season to win the Super Bowl. Manning will pick apart the Raiders defense and put up major numbers. The game should be a blow out win for the Denver Broncos at home.
pics and stats from espn.com