Raiders, I Hate You So, but You Could Be Good

Today's first of many NFL previews involves the Oakland Raiders, a team that is generally bereft of my respect for I am a Broncos fan. 


With that said, I will try to be fair in analyzing this team, which I feel will go back to last place in the AFC West.


Anyway, the Raiders are fresh off of an 8-8 campaign, which is the best year they have had since 2002 when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers demoralized them in the Super Bowl.


I didn't directly watch the game, as I was a Mormon missionary in El Paso, Texas at the time, but the Church members we were visiting had the game on from a distance and a smile emerged on my face as I could hear the Buccaneers were destroying them.


Anyway, not much has gone right since then in the Nation but from that time on, but 2010 showed some good signs.


The Raiders beat my punchless Broncos two times, but Denver is much stronger, so that will be a good matchup in Week 1 at Denver on September 12.


Oakland's running offense was second in NFL annals in 2010 and if Darren McFadden (1,157 yards, 7 TD's) and Michael Bush are healthy, this is a tough stumblingblock for AFC West opponents to deal with.


The Raiders, much like my Broncos, have several signal-callers who can get the job done when called upon with Jason Campbell, Trent Edwards and Kyle Boller all boasting several years of NFL experience.


At wideout, Denarius Moore has proven to be an intriguing prospect thus far in preseason and (I hate to admit it) my fellow Southern Utah Thunderbird alum Nick Miller has proven himself to be a solid punt returner when called upon.


Defensively, however, Oakland didn't have the best season in 2010 and star cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha has departed for Philadelphia so unless someone steps up to assist Rolando McClain, Oakland may have to win lots of shootouts.


The Raiders and Broncos could actually be the two teams to battle for the AFC West as Kansas City accomplished much of their success with smoke and mirrors in 2010 as the Ravens easily ousted them from the playoffs.


Additionally, the Chargers, who Raiders fans hate as much as I do, just aren't the elite team they were earlier in the 2000s and Philip Rivers may prove to be yet another Dan Marino (except the prolific Dolphin legend made it to ONE Super Bowl....), big stats, no bling.


Anyway, that's all I've got. I hope the Raiders don't do well, but the pragmatic thinker in me says they have a chance to be around .500 and perhaps win as many as 10 games, we'll see what happens.


With all my heart, GO BRONCOS!!!

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