As expected, DeAngelo Hall has been traded for a 2008 second round pick and 2009 fifth round pick. He has signed a deal worth about $25 million in guarantees.
What does this signing mean to the team’s likelihood of success in 2008? It would make sense with all the offseason moves and a #4 overall pick in the upcoming draft hat we could see a huge jump in wins. While some of the media may continue to “Raider hate,” I think we have catapulted our team into the AFC elite in one offseason.
There sure isn’t a lot of teams as loaded as we are now. Chargers, Jaguars, Colts, Patriots, Steelers, and um…I can’t really think of any more. With most of the Raiders hopes resting on a few weak knees and on the arm of a second year Quarterback. You can’t argue with the talent level of the Raiders now. As Mark Schlareth said, “The Raiders are the most impressive team coming off the bus.”
Also, the Hall trade and signing is somewhat of a revelation of sorts as Lane Kiffin. Kiffin finally made a public statement, even if it was filtered through several layers of Public Relations writers. With consistency in coaching all-around and an active offseason in which we have filled and upgraded many major areas of need, you have to like what the Raiders are doing. Kiffin probably likes it too.
There is risk, certainly such a large amount of money to a group of players could cripple an organization. However, Al Davis is taking a very active role this offseason and I believe Al Davis has tried to pass the torch only to find few people willing to build the team like he wanted or be bold enough to make moves to address the needs for fear of Davis’ wrath. Love or Hate Davis, he is a great football mind even at age 79. Davis can also evaluate talent with the best of them. Some people may say he just loves speed, but I think Al Davis’ biggest problem is putting no stock in any off-the-field characteristics.
In this case, Hall comes with some baggage. He had a huge meltdown last season. Giving Hall a pass for everything that transpired in Atlanta is like giving Moss a pass for everything that happened in Oakland. However, that doesn’t mean Hall can’t succeed in the Silver and Black in 2008 and beyond. In fact I don’t think it means a thing. What it does mean is there is a risk, a risk Al Davis was willing to take a chance on.
You have to admit, Al Davis might have the biggest 79 year-old pair out there. He has put all his eggs in JaMarcus Russell’s basket and to some extent also that of his current coaching staff. Early Prediction: In the hunt for playoff spot.
In other news:
I have a source that tells me Chris Clemons has purchased a Bentley Coupe for $180,000. He also is putting $30,000 into his house. Apparently, he knew Oakland wasn’t going to re-sign him after the Kelly deal was announced. There is some video up of him on the Eagles website as well. It’s a shame, because we are still thin at DE.