The biggest addition by subtraction was the release of JaMarcus Russell. Russell was a cancer to this team. Looking back to the Jets game, it was one of the worst performances by a quarterback I've ever had the misfortune to watch. But enough about Russell.
This is Jason Campbell's team. If you look at his numbers last season, they were actually fairly solid. The former first-round pick threw for 3,500 passing yards and 20 touchdowns.
Trust me, his numbers could have been much better. He was destroyed all season by that Washington offensive line. While I was watching tape of the infamous New York Giant game in Week 15, I came to one conclusion.
No one, and I mean no one, would have had a chance playing quarterback for that Redskin team last season. Osi Umenoiyra massacred Levi Brown (and therefore, Campbell) almost every single play that first half.
When Campbell isn't on the ground, the Auburn product has shown fantastic tools that a QB needs to have to be successful. Campbell is mobile, has solid mechanics, and is a solid leader.
Campbell was also miscast in Washington the past couple of seasons. He isn't a West Coast quarterback. He is much more suited for the vertical passing game than the offense he had to go through last season.
The only thing that really peeves me about him is that he checks down far too often.
I can see why the former first rounder had his detractors in that department. Campbell is a safe quarterback. On 3rd-and-15, he likely won't try to throw for the first down. He will play it safe and go with the tight end or running back on an underneath route. That's just the way he is wired.
Another concern I have about Campbell is fumbling. In the last three seasons, he has had 33 fumbles. While I did point out that his offensive line has been awful, 33 fumbles is not taking care of the football, regardless of how porous the line is.
The Raiders certainly have more talent around Campbell than what he had last year in Washington.
The wide receivers are probably better. Louis Murphy, Chaz Schilens, and Darrius Heyward-Bey are all young developing players that will continue to get better. I think Campbell will definitely welcome the fact that he has bigger receivers, instead of the smallish Santana Moss and Antwaan Randle El.
Let's also not forget that Campbell played without his top two running backs for a good portion of last season. Do you really think opposing defenses feared Quinton Ganther or Rock Cartwright (who has now joined the Raiders).
With Michael Bush and Darren McFadden, you at least have some good running backs on the roster. Here is a fun fact about Michael Bush for you. When he got at least 10 carries in a game, he averaged 5.1 yards a carry and ran for a total of 414 yards. Message to Tom Cable: Give him the damn ball!
And now to that dreaded offensive line. Is it really better than Washington's 2009 offensive line that was, well, offensive to watch. I happen to think that the Raiders offensive line is much better even though they have been ranked dead last by web sites Profootballfocus.com and Yahoo.com.
First of all, the good news this offseason is that Robert Gallery is healthy this season. He never really got back up to speed after having to have an emergency appendectomy right before last year's training camp. As long as we don't have Chris Morris trying to "block" again, I'm happy.
The biggest concern on the offensive line is probably Mario Henderson. He was ranked dead last in pass protection and run blocking by Profootballfocus.com. There were some flaws with their grading system, but you can't make too many excuses for Henderson.
Henderson had three really poor games by my count last season. Those games were the second San Diego game (two sacks), the Dallas game (nine pressures), and the Washington game (three sacks).
Another interesting nugget of information was that seven of the eight sacks Henderson gave up, JaMarcus Russell was the quarterback.
Otherwise, those previous games, he wasn't terrible or great in any other games.
But when he loses it, like he did in the second half against the Redskins, the quarterback really feels the pain. Either Henderson has to block better, or we may just see Jared Veldheer earlier than we thought.
Hue Jackson comes in as the loudest voice you've heard in the East Bay since Jon Gruden.
Jackson is noted for the development of Joe Flacco, and the development of receivers like Chad Ochocinco and T.J. Houshmanzadeh.
Jackson has also been fired from his two previous posts as offensive coordinator, the Washington Redskins and the Atlanta Falcons.
Neither raises a red flag. The firings can best be explained as Dan Snyder being Dan Snyder, and Michael Vick's dogfighting charges coming to surface in 2007.
What will Jackson's style of offense be?
The early indication from him is that the 2010 Raiders offense will be a running team. The rushing offense has to be better than last season's debacle.
Tom Cable made a poor decision by only focusing on the passing game a season ago, while neglecting what he thought would be a top 15 rushing offense.
I think Jackson will have his fun moving McFadden all around the field, something that it took almost half the season to realize. McFadden will have a field day going against the depleted Tennessee and St. Louis linebackers early in the season.
Where will this offense rank?
I'm not one of those overly optimistic Raider fans that believe this offense is destined for the top ten. The Raiders aren't exactly going up against world class defenses this season. Don't forget that this was still a 31st ranked offense last season.
While the AFC South can light it up offensively, none of them exactly strike fear to the Raiders. The NFC West is also poor defensively.
With all things being accounted for, I say this is destined to be around 17-20 in the league in total offense. For the specifics, I'll say that we finish 13th in rushing, and 22nd in passing.
So, Raider Nation, how are you feeling about our offense in 2010?
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