Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

December 8, 2007
Checking in from the cold

Just finished watching the Mayweather-Hatton fight out here in Wisconsin. Great fight.

I also toured Lambeau Field today. The people out here love their Brett Favre. There are so many stories of his good deeds, it’s hard not to like Brett.

But enough of that, on to some questions:

Question: Watching the Ravens' 11-man prison riot had me salivating. They were so physical the Patsies could hardly lift their arms after halftime, and shied form contact. A veteran SS ala Rod Woodson, and a Glenn Dorsey type up front would give Coach Caveman who he needs to terrorize the league. Dumping Stu for Eugene proves this. Do you see any good trades/FA pickups looming for us on either side of the ball? Jordan, Rhodes, and Walter are good trade bait. Any way we land Alan Faneca for the O-line?
Wayne, Los Angeles

Answer: Trades are hard to predict, especially when they involve players. Randy Moss was worth a fourth-round pick, but so were Josh McCown and Mike Williams. The Patriots gave up a second-round pick for Wes Welker. What a player is worth is hard to gauge. If the talk that Chad Johnson’s time in Cincinnati might be up, he would be someone the Raiders would have to target. The Raiders could lose Jerry Porter in free agency, and even if he doesn’t leave, the Raiders still need another receiver.

Trading LaMont Jordan or Dominic Rhodes wouldn’t be easy. Teams would likely wait the Raiders out to see if they are released. Also, Justin Fargas is a free agent after this season and Michael Bush is unproven. The Raiders might not be inclined to dump Rhodes or Jordan depending on what happens with Fargas. But I expect one will be gone.

Walter isn’t a lock to be traded either. Al Davis is a believer in keeping quarterbacks and hasn’t been willing to part with him.

Faneca is going to command a big contract and I’d be surprised if the Raiders go after him.

Question: I have been a Raider Faithful since 1976, and I have one big question that I seem to get a lot of flack for on other message boards I post on. Why doesn't anyone point out to Mr. Davis we need a GM that can pick players and talent? Mr. Davis has done this for a long time, and it works about once a decade. But looking at the best teams in the league for the last 30 years, you have to see the front office was the main reason. Your thoughts?
Blair, Ogden, Utah

Answer: I agree 100 percent. The Raiders’ scouting department needs a shake up in a major way.

There are a lot of “lifers” up there and they haven’t produced. Al Davis acknowledged as much when he hired Lane Kiffin and noted he was the lead recruiter and evaluated talent.

In some cases, Davis goes along with what they say and sometimes their judgments (obviously) are way off.

The Raiders have missed on several draft picks. And with how poorly the team has done, they should have more to show for it in young talent on the roster.

The biggest hole is in evaluating offensive talent.

Right now, the best pick on offense since the 2002 season has been Justin Fargas, who didn’t become the No. 1 back until this season.

How the Raiders' front office works is a mystery to a lot of people. You could even hear that this week in Lane Kiffin when he had no explanation why Jarrod Cooper, who is out for the season with a knee injury, hasn't been placed on injured reserve.

The Raiders could use another healthy player. And Kiffin has no idea why Cooper isn't on the IR.

Just another day with the Raiders.

Question: Why have the Raiders or any other team not try and sign linebacker LaVar Arrington? Could you imagine him with Morrison and Howard? Or turn him into a Pat Swilling type who could play end or L.B ?Am I the only one who thinks we should not have cut the hard hitting Donovin Darius. Even hurt he hits better and smarter than what we got.
Bryan, Antelope

Answer: Arrington is without a team because he retired after a ruptured Achilles last season and a motorcycle accident in June. He’s young and obviously could change his mind, but it looks like Arrington is done as a football player.

--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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