The Oakland Raiders won seven games this season and was 6-4 at one point of the season; they struggled down the stretch at the end of the season. But going into the last game of the season, the Raiders still had slim playoff hopes but did not make it. Looking into the offseason, there are things the Raiders must do to get better.
Address The Linebacker Position
Over the past few years, the Raiders have failed to address the linebacker situation. Oakland has always opted to sign stopgap linebackers and drafted projects for the linebackers position.
If the Raiders want to get better on defense, they will need to find fast linebackers that can cover in space. The Raiders have been getting killed over the years with short passing routes that involve linebackers covering. I think the Raiders will finally address the linebacker spot in the draft and free agency. Cory Littleton is a free agent and perfect linebacker for the Raiders.
Figure Out The Derek Carr Situation
It is time for the Raiders to figure out if Derek Carr is their quarterback for the foreseeable future or not. Derek Carr’s numbers look good, he completed 70% of his passes and threw for 4,054 yards. But Carr threw a lot of short passes, which helps his completion percentage. Sometimes Carr showed the unwillingness to hang in the pocket and throw the ball down the field. The quick passing could also be because of Jon Gruden’s conservative play calling. A lof time, Carr looked scared in the pocket and would go down easy or throw the ball away. It will be a tough decision for Jon Gruden, and Mike Mayock to decide what to do with Carr.
Going into the season, the Raiders thought they were going to have Antonio Brown, but that did not happen. Wide receiver Tyrell Williams got off to a great start but later tailed off due to a foot injury. The Raiders acquired Zay Jones during the season, but he struggled to get open as well as the other receivers on the team. Rookie Hunter Renfrow played excellent in the slot and looks like a keeper.
The Raiders need to go out and find a number one wide receiver and other receivers that can create separation via free agency and the draft. Hopefully, Williams can come back healthy and build on his success early in last season. A.J Green is a free agent but is coming off an injury, i think the Raiders should take a look.
The Raiders drafted Max Crosby and Clelin Ferrell, Crosby had an outstanding season with ten sacks, Ferrell started slow but came on as the season went on.
The Raiders should look to some veterans in free agency to help the defensive end position. A couple of vets to go with Crosby and Ferrell would provide an excellent defensive line rotation. Robert Quinn and Ezekiel Ansah would be excellent additions.