The Oakland Raiders receivers are a very young and talented group of players with plenty of potential. It's safe to say that they dropped the ball last year when it came to production.
Jason Campbell is now under-center and Raider Nation is once again filled with hope. There are many critics out there who still believe the Raiders are far away.
Perhaps one of the biggest questions everyone outside of the Raider Nation has is, "Who will Jason Campbell throw to besides Zach Miller?"
That's a great question and I would gladly answer it.
Darrius Heyward-Bey, Louis Murphy, and Chaz Schilens are all vying for the No. 1 and No. 2. These guys are all young and hungry, and each have their strengths.
Heyward-Bey had a forgettable rookie year, but has put in the hard work and looks much improved in camp. He is holding on to the ball and making aggressive plays to get to the ball. He is also putting in extra time after practice with Nnamdi Asomugha.
Heyward-Bey should be an exciting player to watch in 2010. He's added over 10 pounds of muscle and has added the stiff arm to his arsenal.
Murphy is a playmaker that learned how to play and prepare like a champion while he was at the University of Florida. Last season he seemed to be the guy that always made the big play when Oakland needed one. Don't be surprised to see Murphy lead the Raiders in touchdowns or receptions in 2010.
Murphy has the opportunity to become a special player in Oakland.
Schilens could very well be the most talented receiver the Raiders have on their roster today. He is tall, fast, and has great hands. If Schilens can stay healthy he has the potential to be a very good No. 1.
The Raiders have three receivers who have star potential, but that is in the future. The most important thing to focus on is being better than last year, and it won't be hard for these three players to improve on their numbers.
Having Campbell instead of JaMarcus Russell at quarterback will help, and so will having a healthy offensive line and a better play-caller. These three guys should provide the Raiders with the most talent they've had at WR since the Tim Brown, Jerry Rice, and Jerry Porter days.
It doesn't end there. The Raiders have rookie Jacoby Ford who has been turning heads at camp, and they also have Johnnie Lee Higgins who is a solid third or fourth option.
There are other players on the roster that make the Raiders receiving group deeper, like Nick Miller, Todd Watkins, and Yamon Figurs.
Perhaps those names don't scare anyone right now, but they'll demand respect once the season starts. The Raiders don't need anyone on the team to catch 100 passes or 15 touchdowns to be a contender.
They need their top three receivers to improve and produce better numbers than those of the top three receivers the Raiders had last year. The top three receivers on the Raiders roster in 2009 caught 82 passes for 1,149 yards and six touchdowns combined.
There is no doubt in my mind that the top three receivers on the Raiders roster in 2010 will easily exceed that number and perhaps one may come close on his own.
The Raiders receivers will bring some much needed excitement to the Raiders offense in 2010.
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