The Oakland Raiders are off to a solid start with a 3-2 record. We haven’t seen a Raiders team this animated in a while. Their offense and defense are making plays on the field. Hue Jackson, the Raiders head coach, is sticking to his words vowing to bring fireworks to the city of Oakland. After signing his name on the dotted line to become the Raiders 2011 head coach, Jackson’s playbook is already making noise; there’s no doubt that he’s bringing the talent out of his players.
The Raiders quarterback, Jason Campbell, is looking more and more like a leader every week. With the decisions he’s making on the field with the football, it’s safe to say he is performing at his best. We don’t hear much about Campbell in the media, but his stats are worth talking about. In Sunday’s game against the Houston Texans, Campbell completed 15 of 35 passes for 190 yards, which resulted in a victory over the Texans. With only five games into the season, Campbell has a total of 1,190 yards with the good outweighing the bad– six passing touchdowns, two rushing touchdowns, and, unfortunately, four interceptions. We can can say that Campbell may arguably be the best American Football Conference quarterback.
Another explosive player who deserves immediate attention is Raiders running back Darren McFadden. He’s so powerful he could hit a pothole and come out alive. This kid is most definitely the real deal. During his short stint last season McFadden showed that he could be a tough player in the National Football League. After being sidelined for a great portion of the season last year due to injuries, he is making a discernible comeback. The month of September was owned by the young stud.
McFadden led the league last month with 393 rushing yards, including a 70-yard touchdown run in the Raiders’ season home opener. He was also honored as the Fed-Ex Ground Player of the Week for games played on Sept. 25 and 26. After the game on Sept. 25, I was able to catch up with McFadden in the press conference; he told reporters what makes this Raiders team different from what they were last year. “We are working as a unit,” McFadden said. “The guys here are just ready to win.”
Offense lacking….no problem. The defense will step up. Last Sunday the Raiders’ secondary had by far one of their best performances. Defensive tackles Richard Seymour and Tom Kelly came to play some good, old-fashioned football. The Texans defense was held to just 70 rushing yards. This was a team effort on the defensive end. Keep your eyes on the silver and black– they look like they’re going places this year.
I would also like to extend my deepest condolences to the Raiders’ organization for the loss of their owner, Al Davis, known as the greatest Raider of all time, who died on Saturday at the age of 82.