Thursday, March 17, 2016

Raiders Ink Penn and 6'4 Andre Holmes

RAIDERS  are now the only team with all 5 offensive linemen owning grades of 79.0 or higher—no other team has 3.

There you go Raiders.  That's how you get it done and keep the good chemistry flowing.  Veteran players Donald Penn and Andre Holmes were both re-signed to the team this week.  Penn plays a huge role on an offensive line that now has depth and experience. Here's what offensive line coach Mike Tice had to say about the organization's commitment to improving the O-line:

“People understand that the most important person on the field is the quarterback,” Tice said, “and you have to take care of him. (General managerReggie McKenzie) has done a great job of giving us the tools we need to do that, at a very high level.”

There should be no excuse for a poor running game this season, even with injuries. The O-line can get the job done for both rushing and passing to be successful.  Maybe we'll even see shifty running back George Atkinson, Jr. make a case for more playing time if the line opens holes like I believe they will. It all begins up front, and from what I see up front for the Raiders, this is the season to truly believe. The O-line makes the Oakland Raiders offense a "Potential Juggernaut," not my words but those of senior editor Jerry Knaak. And trust me, Jerry's been around football for a while.

As for the six foot four wide receiver Andre Holmes, who I've cheered for the past two seasons.  Holmes was given a one year deal to return as one of the tallest targets for Raiders quarterback Derrick Carr.  He might not be the most explosive, but he knows how to use his height and body positioning to beat defensive backs to the ball.  Not scared to go up high for a ball, he'll usually get that much needed first down in a final drive with the game on the line. The game might continue changing, but you still can't teach height. 

And the bonus with Holmsey is he knows how to get into the endzone.  Yes, #18 Andre Holmes is gonna be a big offensive piece that opponents will have to contend with once again.  Welcome Back Holmsey my boy, welcome back!

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