Can you remember when the Raiders were without a real deep threat? On multiple occasions the Raiders had a roster filled with receivers who could only run in a straight line? The Raiders also had their fair share of divas at the position. Remember when Oakland’s pass offense revolved around dump offs and check downs? Remember when it seemed Justin Fargas was the only reliable weapon the Raiders had?
Do you remember all the years Zach Miller led the Raiders in receptions and receiving yardage? Do you remember feeling the entire Raiders team squawk after Miller signed with Seattle?
I am sure you remember the excitement in the media when the Raiders announced that Kevin Boss had picked Oakland over his other suitors. All the articles stated, “Well, he is a better blocker,” and Al Davis let a pro bowl tight end slip away. The Raiders were blasted for letting Miller go to Seattle and accused of taking Miller’s talent for granted. Kevin Boss has yet to play a snap and the Raiders haven’t skipped a beat on offense.
The Raiders offense has actually greatly improved since Miller’s departure. The Raiders are averaging over 370 yards and 29 points a game while averaging 5.9 yards per play so far this season. The Raiders boast the second leading running back in the NFL and even with four offensive players inactive, the Raiders still posted 454 total yards. If the defense can ever play consistently the Raiders will be a playoff team.
The truth is, with as many weapons as the Raiders have, even Brandon Myers would have the fans forgetting about Zach Miller. Did Al Davis know something we did not? Given an off-season with no workouts that his offense would gel together without relying on a premium tight end? Not signing Zach Miller saved Al Davis up to 20 million dollars and given the offensive production thus far that money can be put to better use on the defensive side of the ball.
Al Davis had faith in Jason Campbell. Davis gave Campbell the weapons and a coach to get the best out of him. Davis knows that Campbell, like Michael Bush, is in his contract year. Players generally perform their best in contract years. Even with a list of injures, the Raiders have playmakers. If rookie Denarius Moore receives the playing time he deserves he might have more yards than Julio Jones and A.J. Green combined.
Al Davis record of failures is long, but few give Davis credit for success. Give Davis the credit, he saw something in this offense and saved a lot of money by signing Kevin Boss instead of Zach Miller.