Dear Football Santa,
Raiders fans don’t ask for much, and we’re thankful for the steady improvement this young team has shown this year. But there are a few gifts we’d like to add to the wish list prior to the 2020 season.
While this humble writer will actually be celebrating Hanukkah tonight, I’ll be drinking egg nogg, watching the college football bowl game between BYU and Hawaii, and thinking about the items on this wishlist potentially coming to fruition.
No. 1: “Santa, I want (to beat) a pony”
First and foremost, Raiders fans would like to wish for a win over the ponies on Sunday.
The team needs a ton of help to sneak into the playoffs, and wishing for every domino to fall in the correct place is a tall ask. I know you may not be able to grant the wish of putting the Raiders in the playoffs, but please, help us sweep the ponies on Sunday.
No. 2: A quality coverage linebacker
We would love Isaiah Simmons, Football Santa, but we know that winning 7 games likely puts the Raiders out of position to select him in the draft.
Whether our Simmons pipe dream comes to fruition or not, we’d like to formally wish for a coverage linebacker who can capably cover tight ends and running backs. That’s a major sore spot on this team, perhaps even the biggest weakness. So whether it is through free agency or the draft, please allow Paul Guenther to come to his senses and sign off on a high-profile addition at linebacker.
No. 3: Health in the secondary
This secondary has employed many a turnstile over the years, but we actually have some promising players when healthy. We just need to keep them healthy.
Johnathan Abram, Lamarcus Joyner, Daryl Worley, Karl Joseph, and now Trayvon Mullen have all dealt with myriad injuries this season. That’s all five of the team’s starters.
This team may go out and add another starting piece in the offseason, but if they simply brought back that core five, they would be more than adequate if legitimately healthy.
No. 4: Peace on Earth (among Pro- and Anti-Carr fans)
Please, Football Santa, give us clarity with the “Derek Carr situation” so that fans do not feel the need to rip each other to shreds on a day-by-day basis regarding how good Carr is or isn’t.
We’re all Raiders fans here. Can’t we all just get along?
I understand that there needs to be some sort of conclusion regarding Carr for this so-called peace between fans to occur. Whether that means that the Raiders double down on Carr as their franchise quarterback, or they start fresh at the position with a player who has higher upside, just allow us to have some clarity regarding the situation.
No. 5: A studly wide receiver
We all know that the 2020 draft is chalk full of absurd receiver talent.
As a fanbase, the Silver and Black Pride faithful would like to formally wish for a stud wideout who can usurp Tyrell Williams at the X position and allow him to go back to his more natural Z spot.
Whether that’s Ceedee Lamb (yes please), Henry Ruggs III, Tee Higgins, Laviska Shenault, Brandon Aiyuk, or another one of the profusion of playmakers available, adding a dynamic receiver would make us gleeful.
No. 6: A divisional swap of the Chiefs and Rams
I proposed this in my last Sensations, frustrations and declarations article, but I know you’re busy this time of year, Football Santa. In case you didn’t get to read the article, I suggested that the Raiders should try to get the NFL to swap the Chiefs and Rams in the AFC and NFC West divisions.
Why, you ask?
Well, if every Los Angeles game is a home game for the Silver and Black, the Raiders would play 10 home games a year between facing the Chargers and Rams.
Plus, the Raiders would rather not have to see Patrick Mahomes twice a year. I’m sure Jared Goff doesn’t scare them quite as much.
Please, Football Santa, bring us most if not all of these gifts in 2020.
We’ve been on our best behavior, save for a lapse in sanity at the end of the Jaguars game (can you really blame us?). I’m sure I may have left out a few of Raider Nation’s wishes, and I’d like to ask that you check the comment section underneath this article to find other wishes from Raider fans.
Happy holidays from everyone at Silver & Black Pride!
Make sure to leave out some silver and black cookies for Football Santa tonight.