Oakland Raiders: Rebuilding Process Nearly Complete

"I love it when a plan comes together!"

Not even the most adamant Raider-hater can deny the improvements made by the Oakland Raiders this offseason. Accounts describing the extent of this improvement vary depending upon who is doing the speaking.

Hardcore haters say it's minimal at best. Hardcore fans say it's the best since Al Davis took the Raiders from 1-13 in 1962 to 10-4 in 1963.

As is always the case, the truth is somewhere in the middle.

The road back to success and respectability is a long one for the Raiders. Improvement is needed at almost every position on both sides of the ball. A team that has given up more points that it has scored for seven consecutive years cannot be turned around in one offseason.

It takes much more than that.

The right steps are being made now, but there is still a lot of room to improve. It's a step by step process and the Raiders are on their way to completing them all.


Step One: Restore the Faith in the Head Coach

This step was taken by owner Al Davis when he said nothing about head coach Tom Cable benching starting quarterback JaMarcus Russell. Before the Cincinnati game, Russell was the unquestioned starter, due mostly to his high draft position and the fact that he was a "Davis guy."

Once Davis saw how the team rallied around Bruce Gradkowski's fiery personality and scrappy playing style, the writing was on the wall for Russell. Russell being listed as the third-stringer after that sealed the deal.

Cable now had the faith of Davis that is required for a coach to be successful.

Davis has bought in, the players have bought in, and the fans are buying into Cable's decisions and philosophy.

Step one: Complete!


Step Two: Unload Players That Aren't Carrying Their Own Weight

In 2009, the Raiders were ranked 31st in total of...

About the Author