Oakland Raiders WR Chaz Schilens: The X-Factor

big ROC Stockton, CAAnalyst IIIDecember 9, 2010

DENVER - DECEMBER 20:  Chaz Schilens #81 of the Oakland Raiders celebrates after scoring a touchdown late in the fourth quarter against the Denver Broncos at Invesco Field at Mile High on December 20, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. The Raiders defeated the Broncos 20-19.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jeff Gross/Getty Images

Last Sunday the Raiders welcomed back WR Chaz Schilens.  The 6'4", 225 lb. WR finally made his 2010 season debut.  Injuries, once again have kept him off the field for most of the season. 

When he can go, he is easily our best option at WR.  He is a tough matchup for DBs.  Not only is he very big but he has sub-4.4 speed.  He also has very good hands and will go up and get the ball if you put it near him.

A glaring need this season has been a go-to WR.  Jacoby Ford has emerged as of late, but for the most part of the year, we've been without that go-to guy on the outside.  Chaz Schilens can be that guy.  Darrius Heyward-Bey had a few strong games this year but not quite enough.  Louis Murphy can ball, but he has been slowed by injuries this year, and I can't forget that drop at the end of the Texans game.

Chaz Schilens can stretch the field as well as be our possession WR.  He can move the chains on those short routes over the middle.  He gives Jason Campbell a big target to hit.  Schilens, along with the emergence of Jacoby Ford and the return of a healthy Zach Miller, give the Raiders some very solid options in the passing game.  The rush offense has been the strength, but things will begin to open up more in the passing game with Schilens on the field. 

Opposing defenses are going to have to respect Schilens' abilities on the field.  They can't really play him too close because he has the speed to get by most guys.  When they play off of him, he can simply run a slant or hitch to beat the coverage. 

Jason Campbell is going to love this guy.  Schilens even made JaMarcus Russell look halfway decent against the Cowboys in the '09 preseason.  Now, he'll have a true NFL-caliber QB throwing him the ball.  In 2009, he missed the first eight games with a foot injury. 

He had a decent half of a season, finishing with 29 receptions for 365 yards and two touchdowns.  I think he'll have another strong finish this year.  He gives us another weapon on offense, and Jason Campbell will soon find out that our best WR has been on the sideline all season long.