Earlier this year, newly acquired defensive-tackle Richard Seymour guaranteed that the Raiders would be in the postseason.
Barring an extraordinary change of events, that is unlikely to happen for the Raiders. However, I do believe that the Raiders can still finish with eight wins, and I believe that the Raiders should expect that from themselves.
At this point, losing to Washington or Cleveland would be inexcusable, while I think the Raiders can upset Baltimore and Denver.
What's that you say? Play for draft picks?
That is no way to build a team. Winning is how you build a team.
Strangely, the Raiders have done better with lower round draft picks anyway. So I could not care less about top draft picks.
Denver has been erratic this season. The Raiders split the series with the Broncos in 2007 and 2008. They upset the Broncos in Denver last season, which symbolized the beginning of Denver's historic collapse.
After that game, I wrote an article that asserted that the Raiders could win out and make the playoffs.
At this point, the goal should be just winning, baby.
Eight wins would be a great achievement for this franchise. It will be the first time they've accumulated eight wins since 2003 and it would give the Raiders momentum going into 2010.
That many wins would also improve the Raider appeal amongst free agents, in an offseason that is slated to be loaded with talent.
It's just win baby, not just draft baby.