Good afternoon XCFL Raider fans. J.T. “the Brick” here your XCFL Raiders insider. Todays segment will be an overall assessment of this team over the past 3yrs and the direction the team is heading in the future.
Well first off i would be irresponsible if i didnt start by explaining the achievements this team made early on in the cycle. HC Doss and his team earned a 1st round playoff bye in the very 1st season of the cycle. With a rag tag group of vets and young up and comers. The team advanced to the superbowl that season but was embarrassed by the now 2 time superbowl champion New Orleans saints. The roster just wasnt strong enough to compete at that high of a level and it showed.
Fast forward to the following season. HC Doss let a ton of players walk in an attempt to get younger. The result that season? An underwhelming finish and a mid round draft selection. Many of you were calling for Doss’ head and couldnt fathom the Raiders missing the playoffs. After all sence his hiring off the couch back in November 2016 the Superfan now HC has only missed the playoffs twice before. This season was a huge disappointment but the bright spot was the staff drafted very well.
This team started off Extreamly weak and inconsistent. They were hit hard with injuries at key positions and backup\ roll players were asked to do more. The staff put players in position by switching things around on the depth chart but it was honestly the equivalent of putting masking tape over a bowling ball sized hole in a wooden row boat. All that being said the team was able to snag a wildcard spot where they faced the Ravens and had no answer for QB lamar Jackson and his scrambles. Result? An early exit and to the draft board the staff went. Oakland once again drafted well and found some more pieces to take over starting rolls and had the luxury to trade aging players.
We are now 4 games into the season and Oakland sits at 1-3. Whats the problem? Yet again INJURIES are pleging this roster. WK 1 Star WR A. Cooper goes down for 24 weeks. WK 2 Feature RB D. Henry knocked out for 3 weeks. WK 3 Star CB G. Conley goes down for 4 weeks. As you can see the odds are stacked against this team this yr and HC Doss is fed up. Doss went on record saying “were just tired of having to fight an up hill battle every week, the league has evolved and this roster isnt build to defend the offensive trend that has begun to take place.” What trend you ask? SPEED at the WR position.
The Raiders have Speed at the WR position thats not the issue. The issue is defending opponents WRs. Outside of CB G. Conley (who’s injured at the moment) there is no speed on the back end. This team seems to have been built to defend methodical offenses not offenses that chuck up bombs every other play. The way things are heading this yr im telling you now Raider fans dont be shocked if your team earns a top 10 pick for the 1st time ever sence HC Doss’ took over.
The staff has already shipped out their best pass blocking OLman and has went so far as to say they are officially evaluating young talent. There are even rumblings that edge rusher K. Mack may hit the trade block.
Hang in there Raider Nation “it cant rain all the time” as always im J.T. “the Brick” reminding all sports fans theres only one nation, RAIDER NATION!