Operation Re-Build Is Now In Full Swing

D.J. O'ConnorSenior Analyst IIIMarch 11, 2010

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 31: Punter Shane Lechler #9 of the Oakland Raiders stands on the sidelines during the 2010 AFC-NFC Pro Bowl at Sun Life Stadium on January 31, 2010 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Doug Benc/Getty Images

     In the past week the Raiders have released 4 veterans:  Justin Fargas, Javon Walker, Greg Ellis and now Gerard Warren and his 6 year/$36M contract (signed when playing for Denver) have been officially released.  With all the costly veterans now being released this can mean a few things.  #1 The Raiders are strapped for cash or #2 Al Davis has accepted the fact that his team is re-building.

     The young players have stepped up all across the depth chart.  To name a few:  Tyvon Branch, Trevor Scott, Matt Shaugnessy, Louis Murphy, Zach Miller and Chaz Schilens.  This young talent may have taught Al Davis that drafting and building a strong core is the way to create a dynasty.  Now Al Davis has committed to his rising stars.

     With the release of Gerard Warren, Desmond Bryant stands to benefit largely because he and Tommy Kelly are the onlt 2 DTs on Oakland's roster with Seymour a part-time DT and more of an end. 

     When he (Davis) released Justin Fargas, he gave a vote of confidence to Michael Bush who was Oakland's best running back last year.  Darren McFadden should be used as a back-up running back to relieve Bush while lining up mostly at receiver, where DMC was at his best last season.

     Javon Walker was not playing at all (3 games, no catches) last year so his release won't effect the Raiders too much.  But Greg Ellis being shown the door was not only a huge shock (Ellis had tied for the team lead in sacks-7) but a huge vote of confidence to the impressive Matt Shaugnessy, who will likely line up opposite side of Richard Seymour on the D-line.

     Unfortunately, re-building a team takes time.  I don't know when the Raiders will be back to the promised land; but with Al Davis playing his cards right (finally) the Raiders could be a threat again before too long.