Jon Gruden is now the Oakland Raiders coach for the foreseeable future, signing a ten year contract. Kahlil Mack is gone and their top wide receiver was signed by Baltimore.
AFC WEST DIVISION WINNERS: +325 (Bovada)
AFC CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS: +1600 (Bovada)
SUPER BOWL 53 CHAMPIONS: +3500 (Bovada)
Team Win Total: O/U 9.5 (Westgate)
Week 1 vs. Los Angeles (Rams) (+1.5) Week 9 @ San Francisco (+1.5)
Week 2 @ Denver (+1) Week 10 vs. Los Angeles (Chargers) (PK)
Week 3 @ Miami (+1.5) Week 11 @ Arizona (-1)
Week 4 vs. Cleveland (+7.5) Week 12 @ Baltimore (+5)
Week 5 @ Los Angeles (Chargers) (+5) Week 13 vs. Kansas City (-2.5)
Week 6 vs. Seattle (-1.5) Week 14 vs. Pittsburgh (+3.5)
Week 7 BYE WEEK Week 15 @ Cincinnati (-1.5)
Week 8 vs. Indianapolis (+6) Week 16 vs. Denver (-4)
Week 17 @ Kansas City
The Rams, Seahawks, Ravens, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh are spread out throughout the season and making it hard for the Raiders to get a break. They only play back to back at home twice once with the bye week and then in weeks 13 and 14.
Key Team Additions and Subtractions
Additions – RB Doug Martin, WR Jordy Nelson, WR Martavis Bryant, WR Ryan Switzer, DE Frostee Rucker, LB Tahir Whitehead, LB Derrick Johnson, LB Emmanuel Lamur, and CB Daryl Worley
Subtractions – WR Michael Crabtree, CB T.J. Carrie, LB Navorro Bowman, LB Aldon Smith, K Sebastian Janikowski, and P Marquette King
Draft – T Kolton Miller, DT P.J Hall, T Brandon Parker, DE Arden Key, CB Nick Nelson, DT Maurice Hurst, P Johnny Townsend, LB Azeem Victor, and WR Marcell Ateman
Many thought Derek Carr would take a huge leap into elite level quarterback last season. Rather moving forward he took a step back. He will have a new receivers in Jordy Nelson and Martavius Bryant as well as a new running back in Doug Martin. He has plenty to be successful, can Gruden get him to that next level?
Marshawn Lynch came out of retirement and probably shouldn’t have. He was productive but not near what they expected. Pairing him with the muscle hamster should allow the Raiders to have a stronger run game.
Amari Cooper had a brutal season due to drops. However he did have a career high in touchdowns (7). Jordy Nelson is coming off one of his worst seasons, but he was missing Rodgers throwing to him. Martavis Bryant and Ryan Switzer are solid options as 3-4 wideouts, with Jared Cook as a steady threat in the passing game.
The o-line was really a strong unit for the Black and Gray. Only allowing a total of 24 sacks, third lowest in the NFL. Donald Penn Kelechi Osemele are some of the best at their respected positions drafting two tackles should also help the team have rotational help as well as depth along the line.
The defensive line will be a lot different if Khalil Mack doesn’t get his contract figured out. Bruce Irvin on the other side is a strong edge rusher. Rookie Hurst could have been a first round pick but due to heart conditions fell. If he can play, him and Arden Key (also a rookie) should be beasts along the line.
The linebacking core was a rough spot for the Raiders. They brought in veteran Johnson but he may be well past his prime. Tahir Whitehead played much better. They may use Key as a pass rusher out of the second level with his athleticism.
The secondary was extremely bad last year and it really didn’t improve much this season. Hopefully new comer Daryl Worley and second year pro Obi Melifonwu can step in and play key roles to soak up this swiss cheese pass defense.
Nick Novak has been around for a long time and there is a reason for that. He is consistent as any kicker. Desmond King and Travis Benjamin will be the primary kick returners.
Tavecchio was a bright spot from the kickers role. Ryan Switzer and Dwayne Harris Will handle the returning roles, while Townsend will replace Marquette King in the punt game.
This team isn’t better than the Chargers and most likey wont be better than the Chiefs. Gruden hasn’t coached in almost ten years. The game has evolved from what he may be used to. Outside his Superbowl Championship, he hasn’t had the best record, 83-77 taking out that season and 2-4 in the playoffs. Derek Carr isn’t elite and neither is the defense. This team has too much hype surrounding it and not enough talent.
Please help support Spark Sports by signing up with one of our many sponsors.
Promo Code: SPARKSPORTS