The Raiders of old have been looked upon as being a hodgepodge of throwaways and dirty players who somehow ended up hoisting the Lombardi trophy three times.
The new Raiders seem to be making the most of the draft and developing their own legacy that is being built on thoughts instead of threats.
The draft class of 2010 is arguably the greatest in Raider history. If you go back as far as 2008, you will find that within the last three years (excluding the 2011 draft class) you will find as many 10 starters came from these classes.
With the acquisition of many key players through free agency and trades, the Raiders have built a team that is one of the most talented groups that I have seen since they were last in the Super Bowl.
Let's face it, it's quite evident that this team doesn't have the menacing personalities of past teams that help develop the persona of the Raiders. At the same time, it isn't necessary for this team to be as nasty to be ranked amongst the greats.
We now have the likes of Seymour, Houston, McClain, Huff, Mitchell, etc. None of these guys cross you as crazed criminals, but they play with a level of intensity that can still propel this team far into the postseason.
When you combine this talent with what I believe to be the best coaching staff the Raiders have had in probably over 20 years or more, you have a situation that could turn into something very special. I don't think there has ever been a Raiders coaching staff that has this level of energy, commitment and enthusiasm about the team.
Like Jackson, Al Saunders, who some say is one of the best offensive coordinators in the NFL, is a California native and is even more closely related to the Raiders than Jackson is.
Defensive coordinator Chuck Bresnahan coached in Oakland before, while defensive backs coach Rod Woodson and linebackers coach Greg Biekert both played in Oakland before. Each of them know the tradition of the Raiders and have a vested interest in returning them to where they once were and should be, amongst the NFL's elite.
The Oakland Raiders have one of the most absorbing legacies of all the teams in the NFL. I think Al Davis, the new coaching staff and the current team are adding a new chapter to the history of the Oakland Raiders.
Though it may not reflect the Raiders of past decades, this team may very well be the first in long time to reach the playoffs, and eventually hoist up their fourth Lombardi trophy.