The Oakland Raiders currently play in the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, which is located in Oakland, California. The stadium is aging and the team is actively seeking a new location. The Oakland A’s also play in the stadium. There is a capacity for over 56,000 fans.
The biggest change for the Raiders is that Matt Flynn came in as the new quarterback and Carson Palmer went out. Reviews are mixed for Flynn; however, with some experts suggesting the team traded the woes of one quarterback for those of another. Flynn will have to prove he has a strong arm and can hit his receivers and running backs accurately and with more consistency than he has shown in the past. He will also need to deal with starting quarterback pressures as he does not have much experience yet. Rod Streater will bump to the top receiving spot, granted he can hang on to the ball and not get benched like last year from having too many dropped passes.
The defensive side of the ball had an almost complete overhaul from last year. Lamarr Houston and Tyvon Branch are the only two returning starters for the Raiders. Everyone else is fighting for a starting position and working to get a solid line in place.
Other names that were added to the roster include Charles Woodson at safety, punter Chris Kluwe, linebackers Kevin Burnett, Nick Roach and Kaluka Maiava. They also picked up kick returner Joshua Cribbs.
There was a long list of players that exited the team as well, including Palmer, Mike Goodson from the running back spot, Darrius Heyward-Bey from the receiver spot, tackles Desmond Bryant, Richard Seymour and Tommy Kelly. They also lost safeties Michael Huff and Michael Mitchell.
The Raiders did OK with their first round pick when they chose DJ Hayden from Houston to play the corner position. Provided he stays healthy and his injury late in the last season doesn’t bother him, he could do very well for the team. The second round pick went to Menelik Watson, a Florida State tackle. In the third round they chose Sio Moore, a linebacker out of Connecticut.
The coaching changes are extensive this season for the Raiders. The head coach remains the same, with Dennis Allen. There is a new special teams coordinator with Bobby April. Jason Tarver is the defensive coordinator. Tony Sparano was hired as the offensive line coach. Dennis Allen has made many more changes to assistants throughout his staff in the hopes that there will be effective leadership in place to turn the Raiders around and become a championship team once again.
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