The Road Ahead for the Oakland Raiders

Raider Nation seems to be waiting in much anticipation for the 2010 off-season to begin, despite knowing that what Al Davis wants, Davis will get, and a kick in the teeth to everyone else.

Raider Nation has afforded Big Al his stubbornness for a few simple reasons: a) three Super Bowl wins, b) 40 years with the highest winning percentage in the NFL, c) he's won by his way in the past.

Alas, we still hope that old Al realizes that the NFL is not exactly the same as it was in the 1970s, when it was easier to outsmart the rulebook. Nowadays, I wonder if a ref would call roughing the passer, because the defender has a strong case of halitosis.

With that said, I opine in vain as to what the Raiders should do this off-season, knowing that it will have no bearing on the actual direction of the Raiders. Knowing that Mr. Davis and the other 30 NFL owners, really don't care about what their customers think.

We fans of the NFL are just lemmings needed as a booster stool for wannabe gods to be above it all and reach the "next level" of consciousness and status.

Verily, verily that must sound ludicrous. 

So here I go.

The defense

Rather than just haphazardly acquire players, the Raiders should have a game plan to approach both the free agency and the Draft. By that I mean, use free agency to upgrade the defense, and use the draft to upgrade the offense.

The Raiders also have a number of free-agents. With an uncapped season in the loom, I am uncertain as to the status of each player.

Nevertheless, there are a few I know for sure. Richard Seymour and Sebastian Janikowski are both slated to be free-agents, and so I would hope that both resign.

Linebackers Kirk Morrison and Thomas Howard will be RFAs, if no CBA is signed.  Quarterback Bruce Gradkowski is also an RFA. Safety Tyvon Branch is also reported to hit free-agency. 

All of whom sh...

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