The Raiders had an up and down season in 2011, and they will be looking to revert their problems in 2012. Oakland has the talent and is in a division that they can win. However, NFL odds makers are not giving the silver and black much love this offseason. Currently, the Raiders are +6000 to win the Super Bowl and +2000 to win the AFC. They rank ahead of only three AFC teams and nine of the 32 teams in the odds favorites to win it all.
While the Raiders’ offense looked pretty good at some points last season, injuries and a lack of wide receiving threats kept them down. They ranked 7th in the league in rushing, and that was without Darren McFadden for most of the season due to injury. However, D-Mac’s handcuff Michael Bush is now a Chicago Bear, and McFadden will have to stay healthy if the Raiders have any chance. D-Mac will be coming back from a Lisfranc sprain, which is a tough injury to gauge how much healthier a player is. Keep a close eye on McFadden during camp and the preseason if you have him on your fantasy radar as a buy low candidate.
Carson Palmer will be under center for the silver and black for the whole season, (if healthy) and the Raiders could not be happier. Palmer threw for 2752 yards last season, and if he would have played the entire season, that number would have been around 4600 yards adjusting for 16 games started.
If the young Raiders can improve upon their defense this season, they have a chance in the AFC West. Even with Peyton Manning in Denver, this division is still very open. The Raiders did nice work in the draft, but they will have to do even more work on the field this offseason if they want to get to the playoffs.
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