10 Things We Learned About the Raiders in the Month of March

It’s been a strange offseason for the Raiders. It’s never predictable with Jon Gruden, but looking back at how the last month played out, we can make a few assumptions that we might not have made a few weeks ago.

Let’s get started with the obvious…

Jon Gruden really trusts Tom Cable

No coach in the Raiders’ building got more praise in 2020 than Tom Cable, but no one thought the Raiders would overhaul the most talented position group on the team. The Raiders offensive line didn’t have any free agents going into 2021 (among the starters at least), but there will most likely be three new starters along Gruden’s offensive line next year.

Bryan Edwards is looking like the Raiders WR1

It can’t be coincidence that the Raiders added John Brown to their wide receiver group and he is basically a more refined version of Henry Ruggs. It may be that Ruggs is faster at this stage in his career, but both receivers are undersized and bring a similar dynamic to Gruden’s offense. It sure seems like the stars are lining up for Bryan Edwards to get a lot of time on the field this year (and for Ruggs/Brown to split time).

Marcus Mariota wants to play for the Raiders

Would Mariota rather be a backup with the Raiders than be a starter somewhere else?

Maybe not, but that’s the way he played his hand over the last month or so. It sure seems like Mariota is happy to make another $4.5 million this year in the same role he enjoyed a year ago… and why wouldn’t he be?

But one question that persists: what will the Bears do when they realize And Dalton isn’t a QB1? Will they make a move for Mariota?

The Raiders had no choice but to unload Trent Brown

Given his comments last week, there is no question the Raiders made the right decision in trading Trent Brown. He wasn’t happy with the Raiders and the team couldn’t count on him to be on the field. The Raiders couldn’t gamble another $14 million on the sliver of hope that Brown was going to get his act together in Las Vegas.

The Raiders aren’t particularly happy with Damon Arnette

Arnette wasn’t very good in his rookie year. Most draft pundits thought he would be drafted in the second or third round… and most draft pundits were probably right.

The Raiders have done too much fishing around the cornerback market for a team that is happy with their cornerback situation. But the team is in a tough spot because they drafted Arnette in the first round less than a year ago.

The Raiders think Paul Guenther was really bad

Other than Yannick Ngakoue, the Raiders haven’t particularly gone wild adding defensive free agents. They will add a free safety and a cornerback, but at this point it doesn’t look like their free agent investments in either position will amount to anything substantial.

In other words, the Raiders knew they needed another past rusher, but the remainder of their deficiencies on defense in 2020 had more to do with coaching (or at least that’s what it looks like from the outside).

The Raiders think Gus Bradley can solve their problems on defense

Considering he won’t have a lot more to work with than Guenther, the Raiders must really believe in Gus Bradley. Gruden’s thinking probably isn’t a lot different than what it has always been. He doesn’t think he needs a top-10 defense. He just wants a defense with a little competence – something he has enjoyed since he returned to the Raiders three years ago.

Kenyan Drake will have a unique role in Jon Gruden’s offense

The Raiders took some criticism for spending big money on Drake as a “backup” running back. Those critics backed off a little when whispers came out of the organization that Drake wasn’t signed to backup anyone. Drake will take some of the load away from Josh Jacobs, but he was really brought to the Raiders to fill the “joker” role that Lynn Bowden Jr. was drafted for a year ago.

Jon Gruden has a mountain of confidence in Derek Carr

Carr’s best wide receiver is gone. His center is gone. Two more of his lineman are gone.

Gruden is putting more responsibility on Carr than ever.

So much for all the crazy rumors about Gruden wanting to dump Carr. Maybe some of those narratives would have been better served elsewhere around the league.

The Jets signed Lamarcus Joyner and we’re praised for it?

Do you suppose the Raiders may have tried Joyner at safety (in practice) and the experiment did not go well?

Eddie Borsilli on Twitter: “I have to take a break. Jets are being lauded for signing Lamarcus Joyner. This app is the worst / Twitter”

I have to take a break. Jets are being lauded for signing Lamarcus Joyner. This app is the worst

Whatever the case, Joyner is a celebrated defensive back in the NFL and that definitely was not the case a month ago.

twitter: @raidersbeat


18 thoughts on “10 Things We Learned About the Raiders in the Month of March

  1. Love Gruden. However it’s the playoffs with a winning record this season or it’s time to move on. Tired of seeing my team fall apart the 2nd half of the season


  2. Let’s hope Gus Bradley can at least bring some stability to the defensive side. In terms of how to measure how bad the defense has been recently I look at it this way – many players drafted haven’t worked out yet leave for other teams and do well. On the flip side, free agents who have been successful with other teams are brought in and don’t produce. I realize that a lot of it has to do with scheme and that’s my point. There doesn’t seem to be a scheme. Please Gus, set the standard in Vegas that we can be proud of as in days past!

  3. If Guenther was the main problem (and I sure as heck do) Joyner may do well in the future. That whole episode makes one wonder, what kept Gruden from firing P.G.?

  4. This was a great article. I would like to see each point expanded into its own article…you get a lot of comments trashing RAIDERS beat but I like the way you call out idiots with b.s. opinions or straight hate on our team…examples colin the coward, the clowns at pro football focus or that corny fool Torrey Smith…..keep exposing the haters…F fair weather fans….go RAIDERS beat….go RAIDERS

  5. LOL, of course the Jets would be lauded for signing Joyner, that Drake is considered a overpaid signing, that Trent Brown’s failure with the Raiders is the Raiders’ fault, (not Brown’s who didn’t want to be there and who was lazy and out of shape) and Hudson is suddenly now being mentioned all around the NFL as one of the best Centers in Football. Any opinion or perspective critical of the Raiders is what the NFL is about…
    I’m just surprised the NFL pundits are not talking about Gabe Jackson as a first ballot Hall of Famer now… Hahaha

  6. Gruden should follow through and get Richard Sherman “ASAP “ before it’s too late again like previous years..

  7. I believe Bradley. Don’t expect to have a top ten defense, but I think they have the right number of players with potential mixed with enough players that have showed they can perform in this league to play solid defense if coached properly. A lot of pass rushers break out in there 3rd year. Would love to see Ferrell step up and be the guy he was drafted to be.

  8. Special teams are boring ain’t nothing going on but just running up and down the field. The league should take back some of the 💰 from players not doing there job under the contracts they supposedly to uphold. And upgrading some coaches will help

  9. Add some secondary players that’s were the overhaul should’ve been firsthand. The offensive line is one of the best in the league add a few linebackers to the mix.bradley need talent to win.

  10. Sorry everyone, but this team can’t seem to coach players up or do anything else right. Tired of the same old **** every year! If no playoffs in 2021, it’s time to send Gruden on his way.

  11. Look I think Bradley will really help make us alot better on defense. I question some of the moves made along the offensive line, but hopefully they all pan out. Gotta get the younger guys on offensive involved more this year.. RAIDERNATION FOR LIFE.

  12. Thought gruden was going to make the raiders great again ! Sorry gruden you don’t know it all just coach! Where is John madden !! Please!!

    1. I really don’t know why he bought back sent he’s back all he’s done is get rid of the best players, there had to be a good reason why got rid of this guy. To me he sabotaging the organization as he know Al’s not here cuz he wouldn’t get away with none of that stuff he’s doing,if Al was here he wouldn’t be. Yes I don’t like him never did fan sent 72 now I am 58 years old.

  13. I think John Brown was acquired to help Ruggs learn and adjust. There is a trend within this Free Agency that shows the Raiders, at long last, are learning. Character commitment and work ethic first. James and Martin are a commitment to more of a spread Offense. I think Kenyan Drake will pay big dividends. If we can field a top half Defense, we’ll be playoff bound. We’ve been suffering locker room, character problems for a while. I think that is why Incognito was kept. Glad we re-signed Morrow. Watch Ferrell and Crosby prosper with the added interior pressure. RN4L

    1. Even though i agree with what you’re saying.
      I question if incognito is the answer for a unified locker room.
      Hope you’re right because we need all that.

  14. 1st off, trent brown didn’t want to be here! fine , get him out of here , defense needs to step up, real bad, who ever is evaluating talent, ( mayock, gruden) needs to do better, for the price of these new seats, you gotta win jack! Go Raiders!!!

  15. I think Carr Will get hurt again in the playoffs & Mourita will Take Over & get the Raiders in the Super bowl ! Maybe Win it For Them ! If the Defence Holds up ?

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