Mario Henderson's Major Impact

jeremy barilCorrespondent ISeptember 15, 2009

Notice how JaMarcus Russell never had to worry about pressure from his blindside all night? 

Notice how the left side of the line performed admirably and never heard the left tackles name called out? 

It's been amazing to watch the development of the Oakland Raiders starting left tackle Mario Henderson. His first year and half in the league he was derided on a weekly basis on how he wasn't cut out to be a starter in this league while Lane Kffin was head coach. 

Tom Cable takes over and doesn't start him the most part until the last 3 games of the season. During that process he didn't call him out publicly like Kiffin did and changed the approach on the young kid. When he started those last three games he completely handled Richard Seymour, Mario Williams, and Gaines Adams. 

Throughout the offseason the Raiders were derided for not taking Michael Crabtreee and not drafting a defensive lineman but really got the big question mark when they chose not to draft LT Eugene Monroe whom Jacksonville took. 

Fast forward to Monday night's game against San Diego. He was a complete wall. The likes of Shaun Philips, Merriman, and others couldn't get past him. He was great in run blocking too. 

Maro Henderson is proving to be Super Mario on this offensive line. If he keeps Russell upright, Russell will eventually start nailing his receivers and this offense will take off. 

He's definitely an unsung hereo on this team. His play has drastically changed the play of the O line.