The ESPN.com preseason rankings have the Raiders at 23. The main reason? Jason Campbell and his receivers.
Jason Campbell had a decent 2010 throwing for 2,387 yards, 13 touchdowns and eight interceptions. The problem for Campbell was the fact that out of 16 games, he eclipsed 200+ yards only six times.
Now I'm not saying that Campbell needs to throw for 300+ yards every game, but he needs to stay consistent in order to open things up for the Raiders' running game.
In the opening slide, I mentioned that these keys will not simply be about one player. The passing game does not solely rely on Campbell.
With the loss of Zach Miller, the Raiders lost their leading receiver from 2010. Miller led all Raiders' receivers with 60 receptions, 685 yards and five touchdowns.
Kevin Boss was brought in to replace Miller, but Boss is a downgrade in terms of a receiving tight end.
The wide receiver position has been a huge problem for the Raiders in the past few seasons.
Louis Murphy led all wide receivers with 41 catches, 609 yards and two touchdowns. Murphy accomplished all of that in 14 games and is currently dealing with a groin injury.
Second-year receiver Jacoby Ford had two huge games last season, but he too is hurting with a hand injury.
2009 first-round pick Darrius Heyward-Bey has yet to make a true impact in the Raiders' passing game, as his best season came in 2010 with 26 receptions, 366 yards, and 1 TD. Heyward-Bey has been proclaimed as a bust and 2011 may make or break for him as a Raider.
Fifth-round pick Denarius Moore has impressed in training camp and may get an opportunity to contribute in 2011. Moore had three catches for 37 yards in the Raiders first preseason game and if Murphy and Ford miss anytime, then Moore could fill in.