Why the Oakland Raiders Should Trade for Brandon Marshall

Bleacher ReportSenior Analyst IJanuary 6, 2010

DENVER - DECEMBER 20:  Brandon Marshall #15 of the Denver Broncos stiff arms Tyvon Branch #33 of the Oakland Raiders in the second half 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

Let me start by saying that I can imagine people will either love this idea, hate it passionately, or just wouldn't count on it, but I had to find out what people think.

The Denver Broncos have a predicament with their star receiver Brandon Marshall , who has stated that he wants out of Denver.  His rookie contract expires this year; however, if no CBA is signed, Marshall will be an RFA , while the Broncos can still opt to tag him.

Nevertheless, the decision to bench Marshall for the final game of the season—a game that had postseason implications—would suggest that the relationship is over and the Broncos will seek to trade him.

I started thinking about this.  As much as I like Louis Murphy and Chaz Schilens at receiver for the Oakland Raiders , Marshall would be a huge upgrade. 

And I took into account several things: Quarterback situation, Darrius Heyward -Bey, and the Raiders position in the 2010 Draft.

I also realize that the relationship between the Raiders and Broncos has long been icy at best, and that divisional rivals usually don't trade star players to each other.

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That said, the Raiders have something to offer and could hypothetically offer to trade down with the Denver Broncos in the NFL Draft, which would put Denver in a better position to fill a big need at linebacker or defensive line, but the Raiders could also offer Heyward -Bey and a third round pick.

Before you immediately object, consider the impact that Marshall has had on quarterbacks.  In 2007, 2008, and 2009, Marshall topped 100 catches on the season with the likes of Jay Cutler and Kyle Orton.

Frankly, I think Marshall could make Ryan Leaf look good.  Well, perhaps that is too hyperbolic, but the point is Marshall clearly makes a quarterback look better.

That leads me to the Raiders' predicament.  That being most fans and critics would agree that JaMarcus Russell is not ready and that Bruce Gradkowski turned in better performances with the same team that Russell had.

I, however, am still convinced that Davis remains firm in his support for Russell, because I still believe that the trade of Randy Moss in 2007 during the draft in which the Raiders selected Russell was an act of sabotage and subterfuge by former coach Lane Kiffin and then-outgoing personnel director Michael Lombardi.

Whether that is true or not is not the point because I do believe that Al Davis believes that to be the case.

Thus, I have not seen enough to believe that Davis has been dissuaded from his commitment to JaMarcus Russell.  We have begun to believe this because of the seemingly imminent termination of Coach Tom Cable, likely resulting from Coach Cable's decision to bench Russell.

If that is the case, then Davis should not wait around for Heyward -Bey, while the Raiders would need a consistent go-to receiver, if Russell is still No. 1 .

You might say then: Why would Denver want Heyward -Bey? 

The answer is simple. 

Josh McDaniels is from a New England system that prefers low-key receivers because the receiver is seen as just a product of the system.  Jabbar Gaffney, for instance, recently recorded over 200 yards receiving for the Broncos.

Thus, if Russell is still the man in the Davis plan, then I would hope Davis does something aggressive in the offseason to support Russell.

With that said, often times the scenarios that make perfect sense in the NFL, don't happen.  Regardless of that, that is something I would like to see.