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Oakland Raiders 2013 season preview Q-n-A with SB Nation

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SB Nation came to Silver & Black Pride to get the scoop on the Raiders 2013 season so here it is.


SB Nation: Who is the easiest player on the roster to root for?

S&BP: Marcel Reece. Great player, great person and the Raiders' only Pro Bowler from last season. He worked his way up from undrafted free agent and even switched positions twice. He was a wide receiver in college, signed by the Raiders as a tight end and switched to fullback due to injuries while trying to find his place in the NFL. He found his place for sure. He is known as the most versatile fullback in the league and one of the biggest mismatches in football.

SBN: If you could buy a ticket to just one game this year...

Clowney Bowl vs the Jaguars in week two. Just kidding (sort of). Clowney Bowl II vs Jets in week 14? But, seriously, it would probably be week 15 home game versus the Chiefs. There is a lot of hype about the Chiefs rising from the ashes of a 2-14 season with Andy Reid taking over as head coach and Alex Smith at quarterback. If there is any truth to the promise, they should be fighting for a playoff spot by week 15 and the Raiders will want badly to kill those dreams. If they turn out to be not as good as suspected, it could be a game where the Raiders are hoping to put them beneath them in the AFC West cellar just as they did last season. Either way, it should be a good game.

SBN: Which veterans could be cut before the season due to salary cap issues?

The first notable cut has already happened - Josh Cribbs. He was considered a big signing this off-season as a former All Pro return man, but he showed none of the explosiveness for which he was known. Another player I would have said was on the bubble was Joselio Hanson, who had his job as slot/nickel corner taken from him by Tracy Porter. But no sooner did that happen but Hanson went down with a groin injury and was placed on IR.

SBN: Which second year player is going to make the biggest leap?

Rod Streater became the starter late last season and looked very good at times. He is being considered the number one receiver for this team now and I expect big things from him.

SBN: What are the odds of your head coach getting fired?

50-50, I would say. The Raiders were 4-12 last season. If the Raiders finish with a worse record this season than last, I see him being fired. If they finish with the same record, it will depend on various factors. If the team has even one more win this season than last, he keeps his job unless things were to go terribly wrong late in the season.

SBN: What franchise or NFL records could be broken this season?

Sebastian Janikowski is 10 field goals of 50 or more yards from tying the all-time record. Jason Hanson owns the record with 52 field goals of 50 plus yards. Janikowski already holds every Raiders kicking record as well as being the team's all-time leading scorer.

SBN: Which rookies will see regular playing time this year?

First round pick, CB D.J. Hayden, and third round pick, LB Sio Moore, will both start for the Raiders. Menelik Watson played left tackle for the first time ever in the Raiders' final preseason game and was quite impressive. As a result, he has been given the starting job at left tackle until Jared Veldheer returns from partial season IR after week 8. If Watson plays well enough, it's possible he would shift over to right tackle and start there in place of current starter, Khalif Barnes, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

SBN: Predict the order of finish in your division.

1. Broncos 2. Chiefs 3. Chargers 4. Raiders

SBN: What do you expect your season-end record will be?