Oakland Raiders: Veterans Who Have Been Disappointments This Preseason
This year, the Oakland Raiders are very young and don't have a whole lot in the way of experience. So, the veterans that are on the team really need to step their games up to show the youngsters how it's done.
Richard Seymour has done just that since his arrival in Raider Nation but he is just one man. There are so many youngsters on the team that more veterans need to set examples.
So far this preseason, there are a number of seasoned players that have been disappointments on this Raider team.
Turn the page to see who they are.
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I was excited when the Raiders first got Khalif Barnes in 2009, then he broke his leg. The Raiders then rushed him back later that year because they were short of bodies and he didn't bode well.
From there, he seemed to be a forgotten man and I thought it was unfair that he never got another chance. In 2011, Barnes now has a chance (probably because of the lockout), and he's doing nothing with it.
In the first preseason game, Barnes false started three times in five snaps. In the second preseason game, on the Raiders first two offensive plays, Barnes whiffed twice and his man either made the tackle or touched the ball carrier on both plays.
So far, Barnes has either had a false start or failed to start at all.
Last year, Daniel Loper came to Raider Nation on a mission and displayed it in camp, pancaking Tommy Kelly. Watching him play now, I don't see how he ever did such a thing as he consistently gets pushed back.
I even thought he played just as well, if not better than Robert Gallery, in his stead. Now he's starting to look more and more like a one-hit wonder after getting a little bump in pay from Raider owner Al Davis.
Did he not come on a mission this year?
Is it the fact that the Raiders no longer run zone plays?
I know one thing:
Stephon Heyer has come to Raider Nation on a mission this year and has been moved to the same position as Loper.
Strong Safety Tyvon Branch has really disappointed me ever since 2010.
Yeah, he had over 100 tackles in back-to-back seasons but what is that really saying?
When it's a Bob Sanders or Troy Polomalu, it's a good thing because the tackle are being made for a small gain. When it's Branch, it's for a huge gain and then the ones he misses go all the way to the house.
He is a good blitzer that came up with four sacks last year.
But a safety has to be good in coverage and Branch can't cover man!
I thought after having a burn percentage of over 70 percent, he would have worked on it and came back better this year. But so far this preseason from what I've seen, Branch might have a burn percentage of 100 percent.
He has two more games to straighten it out or Mike Mitchell is lurking.
I get it that Jackson doesn't want to just give anything to a rookie draft pick that has Raider bloodlines. But Jackson made it sound like Samson Satele had suddenly become a beast and that's why he's still starting.
Next thing I know, he's forcing a position change for Wisniewski, who has been working as a guard in camp. Satele actually looked pretty good against the Cardinals, but they aren't a big, physical team, so that says nothing.
Then the Raiders face the 49ers, who are big and physical, and it looked like I saw the same ole Satele. On a seven-yard run by Michael Bush, Satele was driven back and off tackle (where the play was designed to go). Satele's man made the first hit but Bush spun off for the seven-yard gain.
Satele also threw three no-hitters in the game (Plays where a lineman doesn't hit anyone). One of those plays was on third down near the goal line, when the 49ers made their goal line stand.
He snapped the ball and fell forward into the end zone, hitting no one in process.
The play was a run up the middle that lost yardage too.
How does a center manage to throw a no-hitter near the goal line?
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I love what Cooper Carlisle did for the Raiders when he came to Raider Nation in 2007. However, the Raiders were using the zone scheme that fit his skill set, and it was also three years ago when he had his last good year.
Now he's trying to be a part of a "bully" and "bullying" just isn't a part of Carlisle's game. The Raiders simply can't run up the middle effectively because Carlisle gets driven back when they do.
The running back better be ready to break a lineman's tackle when running up the middle. On the same play near the goal line when Satele threw a no-hitter, Carlisle was put on his back.
That's not a bully.
Bruce Campbell is ready.
Until we saw the unleashing of Denarius Moore, all I heard is how the Raiders need a veteran receiver. Then with Gallery leaving, Cooper Carlisle suddenly becomes valuable despite being driven back all the time last year.
Loper and Satele get a raise in pay and Barnes goes from outhouse to penthouse. Carlisle still makes $2.5 million a year because there is a need for their experience no matter how bad it is.
Forget experience, the Raiders need physical guys that fit the power blocking scheme. Sometimes, you just need that youth that's fully of this hormone called testosterone, that makes a man want to challenge everyone.
Joseph Barksdale, Campbell, Wisniewski, and Heyer are full of it so they should start alongside Jared Veldheer. That's the only way Jackson is going to be able to build his 'bully" for the 2011 season with the players they have.
As far as Branch is concerned, Mitchell played well in coverage last year and he's more physical.
How will that shake out when Mitchell gets healthy?
Saturday's loss was the best thing to happen to the Raiders because they know what they need to fix.