Why can't anyone give the Oakland Raiders credit?
Is there a clause in every ESPN contract that discourages any positive Oakland Raiders coverage?
Within hours of the trade, Adam Schefter spewed texts from unnamed sources within the league who blasted the Raiders for making the move.
The trade is written off as one that will give the Raiders a couple of extra wins at best, but won't put them into contention.
Well, here's my contention: The Raiders want to improve.
They addressed the area of greatest need in their lineup, they have youth at every skill position, and they possess sufficient talent to make a playoff run.
I have suggested for months that Oakland has two prominent issues that will keep them from having a breakthrough season: They can't stop the run and have little leadership on either side of the ball.
They have addressed most of their issues with this trade. They lose one player in 2011. That will not set back the franchise. The Raiders have drafted better on the second day of the draft than most "educated" NFL minds are willing to admit.
If Oakland is bad in 2010, they will lose a top 10 pick in 2011. They will still pick in the top 40 that year and already own additional picks next season.
The Raiders may not win the Super Bowl, but remember, 8-8 won the division last season. Raiders fans want to watch meaningful games in December, and this trade gives them the opportunity.
We haven't had the opportunity to see the Raiders field a defense in the fourth quarter that wasn't exhausted from being pounded on the ground for three straight quarters.
Is it possible that a fresh secondary and D-line may actually be able to hold a lead down the stretch? Remember, one receiver will be eliminated from every play even before the snap.
With the logistics of the trade already under scrutiny, the media has now reported that Richard Seymour may not report to Oakland.
This is not a concern of mine.
Of course Seymour is disappointed to leave the team he has played for his entire life. Of course it's fun playing in Foxboro Stadium and contending for the Super Bowl every year of his career. Why would he want to move his family to California by Monday morning?
I don't care that Rodney Harrison has told reporters he doesn't know if Seymour will actually report to Oakland. Everyone knows where Harrison made his money and why he hates the Raiders.
I believe Seymour will show in Oakland in the next 36 hours.
I have no problem with Seymour being unwilling to travel on a moment's notice to the other side of the country. This trade is a lot to digest. If he needs a few days to refocus, this fan is willing to accept that.
If Richard Seymour comes to Oakland ready to play, he will make a difference.
At 29, Seymour has been in the league long enough that missing practice through Wednesday is not going to set him back on the field.
He doesn't need to learn coverages or blitz packages. Remember, he played in New England and already obtained Oakland's signals years ago.
His job is to recognize and stop the run.
Last season, Seymour had eight sacks in 15 games, which is a lot of sacks for an end in the 3-4 defense.
If he stays healthy this season and Oakland's offense can get on track, why can't they win eight games this season?
And we all know what eight games may mean in the AFC West.