Starters: Amari Cooper, Michael Crabtree
Depth: Rod Streater, Andre Holmes, Brice Butler, Kenbrell Thompkins, Seth Roberts, Josh Harper, Milton Williams III, Kris Durham, Trindon Holliday, Austin Willis
For the first time in a while, the Raiders made wide receiver a priority. They signed Michael Crabtree in free agency and drafted Amari Cooper at fourth overall. Following the drafting of Cooper, they cut James Jones who led the team in catches (73) and touchdowns (6) last season. Rod Streater was the team's top receiver in 2013 but he was lost to a broken foot in week three. This led to Andre Holmes leading the team in receiving yards (693) and contributed four touchdowns.
I have noticed a lot of fans grading the Raiders positions on a curve, comparing the position to previous seasons. If that were the grading I was using, this position would be strong, based on the fact that the Raiders haven't even had a stable receiving corps in a very long time.
Drafting Cooper gives the Raiders a potential number one receiver, the likes of which they haven't had since Tim Brown and Jerry Rice were suiting up in Silver & Black. But he is still just a rookie so the ‘potential' part of that looms large.
Crabtree has at times been a fantastic NFL receiver and a dependable set of hands. The former 10th overall pick eventually wore out his welcome in San Francisco to the point that by late last season, he was barely a part of the offense. And he hasn't had a 100-yard receiving game since 2013.
Streater has been the top receiver on this team, though he is not a proven number one guy. The mere fact that he is now the third receiver on the team tells you how much depth they have at the position.
Also as evidence of the depth on the team is that Andre Holmes goes from leading the team in receiving yards last season to fighting for a roster spot. His primary competition for playing time will come from Third year receiver, Brice Butler. The former sixth round has shown consistent improvement while Holmes seems to have stalled in his progression.
Kenbrell Thompkins is the next in line for a roster spot. He too has shown some flashes of being a productive receiver.
This depth will make it difficult for the remaining receivers to break onto the roster. Trindon Holliday will be used almost exclusively as a return specialist so that's his in. It will be tougher for the others. It's a good problem to have if you're the Raiders.