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Under the Microscope: WR Chaz Schilens

Chaz Schilens is 6'4", 225 lbs and runs a 4.38 40 yard dash with a 43" vertical jump. He has tremendous potential and made a name for himself at the end of the 2008 season for Raider Nation catching two TD's in the last two games. He became a starter in Week 9 of 2008, opposite of Javon Walker, but injuries hampered him until late in the season. This guy has all the intangibles to be a dominant force in the Raiders passing game. I expect him to be that hard-to-stop player, and catch at least 70 passes, 8-10 TD's, and at least 900 receiving yards if he can stay healthy in 2010.

Chaz Schilens may be the next Marques Colston. A seventh-round draft pick with great size, good hands, and Raider speed out of a low profile college; Schilens played his college ball at San Diego State, Colston played at Hofstra.

Chaz Schilens is widely considered to be the best WR currently on the Oakland roster. A broken foot left him out of the first half of the 2009 season for Oakland, but over the final 8 games of the year, he did manage 29 catches and two touchdowns, finishing the year with an eight catch, 99 yard performance against a stingy Baltimore Ravens defense.

With his 29 catches for 365 yards, he matched about 80 percent of Louis Murphy's 34 receptions for 531 yards in only half as many games. Any quarterback would develop a fondness for the massive pass catcher from San Diego State. The coaching staff has raved about his performance thus far in his young career and it's been said that he didn't drop a single pass in the team's practices prior to the season in 2009.

Chaz Schilens will impact the passing game tremendously. He knows how to get into a position to fight for the ball. The Oakland QB's will know they can count on the big receiver. They will know if Zach Miller is covered, then Schilens is another option...another element. Combined with Louis Murphy, Miller and Schilens would be much more dangerous.

I say that Chaz adds a whole different element to the passing game; that Chaz Schilens is an experienced wide receiver who knows how to read coverage's as well or better than any other 3rd year wide receiver in the league. He knows how to find lanes for quarterbacks to throw the ball. He knows how to re-direct his route to get open in space.

With Schilens on the field with Zach Miller, and with QB Jason Campbell being so effective in the red-zone (18 of his 20 TD passes were in the red-zone in 2009), the Raiders are going to be very dangerous in the red-zone this year. Throw Michael Bush into that equation and it begins to look unfair.

Schilens is a factor in the exterior blocking game for Oakland as well. He has been responsible for several key blocks that have sprung Raiders runners. He has made his living thus far making tough catches in crowds of people. He is known for making tough plays on under thrown balls like when he made a spectacular play on a ball that was severely underthrown in the first preseason game of 2009. His play at the ball was so convincing that he garnered a 54 yard pass interference call in his favor. Chaz Schilens is an impact player.

I don't know about the rest of Raider Nation, but I'm excited to see what the guy can do in his third year of pro football. My only fear is that injury bug that keeps getting the best of him and that goes back to his days in college, thus the reason why he only achieved seventh round status. However, Schilens is one of those late round steals that the Raiders seem to be keen on grabbing in recent drafts.

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