The Raiders need to get their pass catchers’ situation figured out right now. This back and forth, in and out of the line-up with injuries thing is hurting this team more than they would like to admit. As much as they’d like to have Zach Miller, Louis Murphy, and Chaz Schilens on the field all together, it just isn’t working out that way for them this year.
So here’s my take on what they need to do to remedy the problem.
First, they need another tight end. This is the perfect place right now for Marcel Reece; however, the problem is that Reece is the starting fullback. But being that it is the end of the regular season, it’s about time to start getting those practice squad guys on the field more if you think they are decent. During the offseason the Raiders’ tried out a variety of fullbacks including Monase Tonga, a local Oakland kid who played true fullback in college, and they also tried out former Cincinnati Bearcats’ defensive end Alex Daniels at fullback as well.
Tonga brings a true grit to the position along with incredible blocking skills and decent hands out of the backfield. His downside is that he is a bit raw still. While on the other hand, you have Daniels. Upside is his attitude; he could bring a fire to the offense with a very physical and aggressive defensive mindset. The trouble with him is he is extraordinarily raw at the position and his hands are question mark. SO if it was up to me, I’d go with Tonga.
These are two kids that Mr. Levi Damien and I are fond of. I think it’s time to pick one and move them into the fullback position until Zach Miller is back to at least 90 percent. I’d much rather have Reece at tight end and another fullback on the field than Khalif Barnes playing back-up tight end.
In the meantime, I definitely want to see more of Jacoby Ford; and I want him to be on the field more with Nick Miller. Both of these guys are explosive and capable of breaking big gainers. Remember JLH a few years ago explosive, that’s what they are. Now, I’m very fond of Louis Murphy and what he’s brought to the field, but he’s clearly not at 100 percent as far as NFL awareness as well as physical ability. When you miss that much time it takes a minute to get caught up with the skill level it takes to compete against the best players in the world. So, Louis needs a break to heal properly. And Darrius Heyward-Bey, once again, is not what he is advertised to be. Perhaps he needs to watch the less experience Ford and Miller make plays and then he too can learn from watching like a first year quarterback. Or maybe they just need to throw him more passes that he can drop. I wonder if he blames the dropped passes on a higher power.
Are you keeping up Raider Nation? I just put in a new fullback, a new tight end, and two new starting wide outs. I think both of those wide receivers can make plays and they both are able to make the big-time catches.
Here’s the problem though, in order to get another roster spot for the extra fullback, the Raider’s would have to release somebody, or place a certain glass-boned wide out on IR. Can I see them doing either thing? I highly doubt it because you know that man crush that Tom Cable has on Bruce Gradkowski? Well it seems to be twice as bad with Chaz Schilens. He should’ve at least been placed on the PUP list this year, so what gives?
Send me your thoughts on the situation Raider Nation and I may post them in a follow up article next week. Email them to Bret@tfdssports.com.
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