The Oakland Raiders have one of the youngest, if not the youngest, receiving corps in all of the NFL. With so much young talent, the Raiders future looks good. However, it is the present that many are worried about.
Most of the Raiders' young receivers have a ton of potential that they have not achieved yet. Knowing these guys could be gangbusters in a few years does not help a team that has been struggling in the passing game as much as the Raiders.
This has led many to believe that the Raiders should, and will, sign a veteran free-agent wide receiver in order to take some pressure off Jason Campbell and help develop the young receiving corps.
With his connection to new head coach Hue Jackson, Chad Ochocinco has been the most common name thrown around with regards to the Raiders.
However, this morning a new wide receiver threw his name into the hat: Steve Smith.
Smith is clearly unhappy about his situation with the Carolina Panthers. Rumors have spread that he cleaned out his locker and put his house up for sale. Then, this morning, news broke that not only was Smith confirming his desire to be traded, but that he had specific requests as to where he wanted to be traded: the Oakland Raiders or the San Diego Chargers.
This news leaves me with the feeling that Steve Smith could very well find himself in the Silver and Black next season.
There are two reasons that I say this. First, when was the last time we heard about a big-time player in the NFL naming the Oakland Raiders as the place he wanted to play? Not only that, the reason Smith wants to leave the Panthers is because he is getting older and does not want to play on a rebuilding team.
This tells me that not only does Smith want to be a Raider, but he also believes the Raiders are close to being a Super Bowl contender and he could push them over the top. Having the desire to be a part of this franchise, as well as recognizing the good things going on here, means that he will have the perfect mindset to come in and make a difference.
He wouldn't be here to run out the clock on his career; he'd be coming to win and win now.
The second reason I say it is because he listed the Chargers as his other choice of where to play. If for no other reason, the Raiders should seriously consider Smith just to keep him away from the Chargers.
With Philip Rivers, Antonio Gates and Vincent Jackson, the Chargers already have one of the best passing games in the league. Add a guy like Smith and they would be borderline unstoppable on offense.
The Raiders need a veteran wide receiver, and it looks like they have found one who wants to be in Oakland. Could this be a match made in heaven?