Oakland Raiders: Deadweight the Raiders Must Cut Prior to 2013 NFL Season
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
At 3-7, the Oakland Raiders are now trying to find an identity for 2013.
Reggie McKenzie's first year as general manager of the Raiders has been disappointing to say the least. After inheriting a financial disaster left by late owner Al Davis, McKenzie has a cluster of overpaid players on his hands.
Unfortunately, Oakland's problems lie deeper than just the players. The Raiders have been one of the most dysfunctional teams in the NFL this year, and the coaching staff has not made it any easier for them.
Let's take a look at some of the personnel changes the Raiders must make before next year.
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
The Oakland Raiders have played 10 games this season, and defensive lineman Tommy Kelly has yet to record a sack.
Not exactly the kind of production you want from a guy making $18 million in guaranteed money.
The Raiders defense has been awful this season, and a main reason is because of the defensive line's inability to get to the quarterback.
Oakland is dead last in the NFL in sacks this season with only 11. Even the Jaguars have more sacks than the Raiders.
Even though it's his first year in Oakland, defensive coordinator Jason Tarver has taken on more than he should have.
The Raiders have given up at least 30 points in five of their seven losses this season and have gotten worse every week.
That's bad. The Raiders also rank near the bottom of the league in pass defense and run defense.
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Aaron Curry has been nothing short of disappointing ever since the Seattle Seahawks drafted him in the first round of the 2009 NFL draft.
The Raiders acquired him for a couple of draft picks last October, but they have gotten nothing back in return.
Curry has failed miserably to live up to the hype that surrounded him when he came out of college, and the Raiders need to move on without him.
Oakland has gotten solid production out of linebackers Philip Wheeler and Miles Burris this year. It isn't worth keeping Curry on the roster.
After having the best season of his career in 2011, Matt Giordano has greatly underperformed in 2012.
He is on pace to finish with 20 less tackles than last season, and he has been banged up as of late. Giordano has also been beat several times by opposing wide receivers this year, leading to several touchdowns.
His undersized frame makes him a liability in the secondary, and Oakland has not shown any progress defending the pass this year.
Though Giordano isn't the only defensive back to blame for the Raiders' defensive struggles, he has severely regressed from last season and continues to look lost against good quarterbacks.
Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE
The Raiders have all the tools and the talent to be one of the best offenses in the NFL.
However, as long as Greg Knapp is the offensive coordinator in Oakland, the Raiders will never be able to reach their full potential.
Knapp's zone-blocking scheme has inhibited the Raiders running game and has forced Carson Palmer to throw at a very high rate.
Knapp ordered several check-down passes early in the season but has since let Palmer use his arm for deep passes down the field. Knapp finally started to use Juron Criner, who provides the big body that Oakland needs in the red zone.
The Raiders are sixth in the NFL in passing and 31st in rushing. Not a very balanced attack at all.