Thursday, October 1, 2015

2015 Oakland Raiders: A New Mentality With A Fresh Start

CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 27: Derek Carr #4 of the Oakland Raiders throws a pass during the first quarter against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

This year the Oakland Raiders are off to a great start. So far in the early goings of the 2015 regular season, we have seen team chemistry that has been missing for a long time.  Can this be our year to regain our stronghold in the AFC West, i believe it will be, and here's why.

This year has started off great because of a new ideology brought in by our new head coach, Jack Del Rio.  Del Rio was successful during his 8 years as the head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars, and his last two with the Denver Broncos.  Being that he had spent the last two years leading Peyton Manning and Co. Deep into the Playoffs, should give the raiders the edge when the two teams square off twice, the first of which is in week 5. 

Another reason is that the Raiders have an aggressive playbook, and a show of fast players, that can help generate big plays as well as put points on the board.  Derek Carr, who was the 2014 offensive rookie of the year, has continued to play QB at an extremely high level.  In Week 1 versus Cincinnati (3-0), the Raiders struggled to score, but in Weeks 2&3 amassed 64 points. 

With a lot of help from the strengthened Offensive Line, who has kept these  opposing defenses from getting close to Carr, which allowed him to put up 351 yards passing against the Baltimore Ravens in week 2.  This OL unit has only allowed 1 sack through three weeks, this is a great feat, lets hope this continues.

One also has to give praise to the running game led by Latavius Murray, the successor to Darren McFadden who signed with the  Dallas Cowboys during the off-season.  Murray has already gained 248 yards on 52 carries, placing him in the top 5 rushers in the NFL, fouth to be exact.

Lets get to the Receiving core, led by Rookie Amari Cooper, another stand-out player who can run routes as good as any receiver in the League.  His speed, and vision combine to make him a threat to score eberytime he touches the ball.  In addition to Cooper, the Raiders brought in Michael Crabtree, to be a solid number two receiver, with his strong hands and great field awareness, he has become Carr's favorite target.  These guys are a tough task for any defense, almost impossible to cover when you add Andre Holmes and Seth Roberts to the huddle.

Now the Raiders have an opportunity to build on their momentum this week against an 0-3 Chicago Bears team.  If Jay Cutler is the QB who starts in this matchup, expect Oakland to bring the heat defensively, and take Cutler to the ground early and often.  This should be a solid win for the Raiders, as long as the secondary shows up to play.

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