Will the Raiders Be Contenders in 2013?


Feb 3, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti holds out the Vince Lombardi Trophy after defeating the San Francisco 49ersin Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

So you read the headline and you said to yourself that a mandatory drug test should be given by the your crazy society or a breathalyzer by the NFL police. Many of the Raider faithful believe that the Black and Silver can’t spell contender, and they are more a pretender than contender.

You understand the pretender status if you have followed the Raiders on draft day for the last decade. Flashback to 2007 when JaMarus Russell was the No. 1 pick. Calvin Johnson was next, and six picks later was Adrain Peterson. What was the front office thinking?

In 2008 you thought the Raiders were back on track with a solid pick in Darren McFadden. Yet just 13 picks behind run DMC was this year’s Super bowl MVP Joe Flacco.

McFadden has done well, but he has not been consistent in his play as well as being plagued with habitual injuries.

Here comes 2009, three excellent draft choices, and all have contributed to the cause. Darrius Heyward Bey, Matt Shaughnessy and Brando Meyers. Meyers is no longer with the Raiders. Michael Crabtree was the No. 10 pick in 2009 and Clay Matthews was the No. 19 selection. Both have been to the Super Bowl and have been big contributors to their respected teams.

In 2010, Rolando McClain was the big pick of the Raiders, you can’t predict honor and integrity.  McClain got paid and hasn’t played consistently since college. Scuffles with the law has marked the one-time college standout, and has increased his odds to be cut or traded or dropped.

In 2012, Terrelle Pryor was selected in in the supplemental draft. He hasn’t shown much, and if you don’t like Carson Palmer, Pryor can’t beat him out so why is he still on the roster? Can anyone in the front office say trade bait?

The point is all of these draft picks should be starting and contributing to the Raiders’ contender plan. These are facts that hit you right in the face that the front office and ownership pretty much went down with the ship after the 2002 season when no comeback was in sight.

For the Raiders to be contenders in 2013, Venus must align with Mars, Jimmie Hoffa will show up at the Macy’s Parade, The Cubs will win the World Series.

GM Reggie Mckenzie has a lot on his plate, with salary cuts and caps are at the top of his list. Players and trades are next. And most importantly, a successful draft in 2013 that pays off with consistency in play and raises the standard of excellence for the Raiders. The Raiders faithful want it NOW. What they want, and what they get, though, will be two different things.