Let's hear it Oakland fans!!!
I want to hear a LOUD OVATION for the "Grim Reaper", Son of Monte himself...LANE KIFFIN!!!!
The tone has changed, completely. The competition is DEEP at every position.
Every single position has been upgraded and the guys are all on board.
Our abundance of running backs should allow our backfield to stay healthy.
Teams have tried two back attacks with some success in recent years. The Raiders are going for a 6 back rotation that calls for Bush (Notice how I start with him), Jordan, Griffith, Rhodes, Fargas and Crockett to be used to their strengths.
I cannot help but think of Earl Campbell when I see Michael Bush.
When I looked up Earl Campbell's stats I saw that he was only 5 ft 11 inches!?!?! Was it just me or did he seem to run like he was 6 ft 4 ft?
It turns out that Bush is listed at 2 inches taller and 8 pounds heavier than Earl Campbell.
Of course, until Bush returns to 100% he is just a HUGE pile of maybe. But, wouldn't it be fantastic to have a nimble bruiser setting up the play action for JaMarcus?
LaMont Jordan is a perfect compliment to a healthy Bush and he is also great as a side kick for Rhodes.
LaMont is a great combo back. He can run with the league leaders but he is also deadly out of the backfield.
Don't forget that LaMont ran for 1,025 yards and caught 70 passes for 563 yards in only 14 games in 2005.
He had the same Y/A and Y/R in 2006 as he had in 2005, he just counldn't stay healthy.
And all of you who saw him running on the sideline last year begging to get into the game cannot question his heart or character.
I listed Griffith 3rd because he has a proven track record as a starter in the NFL.
Griffith is as major a cog in this backfield as a healthy Jordan or Bush.
He gives us a true blocking full back. He will be the safety latch for Russell and the guiding blocker for anyone in our backfield, including when Jamarcus runs.
The Falcons led the League in Rushing for three straight years with Knapp, Cable and Griffith as the glue.
His familiarity with Coach Knapp and Coach Cable's system will make him even THAT MUCH more valuable.
I have Rhodes in the fourth slot because he is a bit of a question mark for me.
Is he the rookie that ran for 4.7 yards a carry in gaining 1,104 yards or the back that hasn't run for more than a 3.4 yard average in two years.
Most Raider fans know him for the game breaking runs that he had in last year's post season. He was also gaing 5 yards a carry in the post season.
So, will we get the 3.4 Y/C or the 407 Y/C? Who knows?
Justin Fargas can finally go to the spot he was built for. The change of pace back. The little fireball of energy that burns a team up the sideline 3-5 times a game and hits you with a couple of quick draws.
And we all know what Crockett can do when we need one yard. Until Bush is ready to go, we will need Crockett on 3rd and 1 and 4th and 1.
All in all this team is MUCH deeper at the RB/FB position that it has been in years and we all know what Cable, Griffith and Knapp can do with a good backfield.