Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

July 1, 2007
They won't go into Tank

We're a little less than a month from training camp. I plan to get some more vacation in and check out the WWE show at Arco before most of my free time is devoted to all that is Raiders.

Before I get to some questions, I think I can say with 99 percent assuredness the Raiders will not bring in recently deposed defensive tackle Tank Johnson. I've heard from some media outlets the Raiders would be a logical place for Johnson once his eight-game suspension is over.

The Raiders have been absent from the NFL police blotter in recent years and Lane Kiffin isn't looking to bring in anyone with the baggage Johnson carries.

Dominic Rhodes had a DUI case when the Raiders signed him, but his contract was structured to protect the team should he face league discipline (only $1 million of the deal worth up to $8 million is guaranteed). Plus, Rhodes doesn't have a rap sheet like Tank.

Now on to some questions:

Question: Do you think signing Donovan Darius is worth the risk? He's 32 and has suffered numerous injuries in recent years. I say we can always use the depth but Darius isn't going to come cheap.

Tom G., Las Vegas

Answer: Darius is worth it at the right price. Having played in only 12 games over the past two seasons, an incentive-based deal for the veteran's minimum makes sense. You never can have too many solid defensive players. The concern I would have is where Darius would play. Do you take snaps away from Stuart Schweigert or Michael Huff? Do you give up on Darnell Bing and Jarrod Cooper as backups? Rob Ryan definitely would find a way to use Darius, but the Raiders shouldn't add him and sacrifice the growth of their young players.

- Jason Jones

Question: Is a new look in order? Will the Raiders ever get new uniforms? It just seems like with the beginning of a new era, new uniforms would cap it off. What do you think?

Reddit Andrews III, Elk Grove

Answer: I would hate to see the Raiders change their uniforms. I think they have the best uniform in football. I'm not sure what you could do. Those stripes down the side of the jersey don't work for me. Nor does changing the style of the number like Tampa Bay has.

I collect jerseys, but I think I've overstepped my boundaries by playing fashion expert.

- Jason Jones

Question: What kind of guy is Lane Kiffin? Is he upbeat like Jon Gruden? Does he curse a lot with his mouth?

Dean Diebel, Carmichael

Answer: I can promise you I've never seen Kiffin curse with his fingers.

Seriously, Kiffin has been pleasant to speak with. I find him candid and engaging. He's definitely upbeat and competitive. Watching him challenge the defense is fun, and he's rubbing off on the team in a positive way - but it's still June.

Does Kiffin like to yell sometimes? Definitely. But his profanity is easily drowned out by the rants of Rob Ryan and offensive line coach Tom Cable.

- Jason Jones

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About Raiders Blog and Q&A

Matt Kawahara was born in Sacramento and attended McClatchy High School and UC Berkeley, where he wrote for the independent student paper The Daily Californian. He graduated from Cal in 2010 and started at The Sacramento Bee as a summer intern. He joined The Bee's sports staff in fall 2011.

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