The last few years, Raiders fans got a treat of what a big spending off season felt like. Mark Davis, riding shotgun in the Brinks Truck, while Reggie drove city to city handing out millions to whatever free agent he set his sights on.
We’ve still got the Brinks Truck fired up, but Derek Carr’s looming extension (and Khalil Mack not too far behind) is gonna have Mark thinking twice before allowing Reggie to make any other detours on the way back to Alameda. Of course, on a long drive, Reggie loves nothing better than reliving his Tennessee tales of Raleigh’s wormwood moonshine and the sorority girls that would make Sam’s Hofbrau blush. If you’ve ever had to listen to Reggie’s college stories, you’d know that it’d cure even the toughest cases of insomnia. Within minutes, Mark is out cold, and Reggie’s master plan is back in play. After a few miles of playing the fun game of “jerk the steering wheel” while Mark’s head slams against the window (who can resist after all), Reggie should take the I-80 East straight to Buffalo.
Robert Woods should be at the top of our free agent wish list.
Wasting away in Buffalo is a 24 year old WR just waiting for the right situation to call and jump start his young career. Buffalo is where WR’s go to die, Chris Hogan is proof of what can happen when a receiver can get away from Tyrod Taylor and the Bills run first (and second and third) offense.
What kind of WR is Woods?
As someone who follows USC Football, I’ve seen quite a bit of Robert Woods.
Woods is proficient in intermediate routes, going over the middle to make those plays that Cooper sometimes has trouble with. He’s less proficient on deeper routes, but then again, that is where Cooper excels so they would compliment each other in that regard.
Woods is also a very good downfield blocker, he’s not a Seth Roberts (who is a beast of a run blocker), but he’s very good at it, and if the coaches appreciated Roberts for his blocking aptitude, I think they would also favor Woods for his ability.
Where Woods really helps us is on third downs. He can get those tough 8-12 yard receptions. Anyone who’s followed the Raiders knows the feeling. Carr makes the throw, we all hold our breath, not because we think the pass might be off target, but because we’re hoping the ball won’t bounce off the WR’s hands and into the diving arms of that ass hole Marcus Peters (I actually really like him as a player, god I hate that he’s a Chief).
Why should the Raiders spend on O when the D is a travesty?
Because the offense could be Atlanta caliber if our WR’s could simply catch a football. Cooper improved tremendously in 2016, but Crabtree and Roberts were two of the worst in the league in drops. Crabtree’s position is safe, but Roberts shouldn’t be, and if signed, Woods would be a tremendous upgrade as our 3rd WR and fortify our receiving corps into one of the top units in the league.
I also don’t think Woods will break the bank. I think he could be had for around 6 million, which is reasonable for a #2 WR, which he would be in two years when Crabtree moves on (yes, I think 2017 could be our last year with Crabs based on his cap number).
Is this realistic?
I think so.
Woods is a California boy, born and raised, if the Raiders called, I’d have to think he wouldn’t hang up the phone over the possibility of playing with the top young QB in the league; on a 12 win team; in his home state.
On the Raiders side, new offensive coordinator, Todd Downing was the Bills QB coach in 2014, the year that Woods put up his best statistical season. Downing knows Woods, whether or not he’ll push for him is the unknown.
Regardless of whether it’s Robert Woods, Cordarrelle Patterson(not quite the fit for us IMO) or another vet, we should really look to address WR before the draft. We’re in the unique situation of having a franchise QB that WR’s will want to play with, McKenzie shouldn’t ignore this rare opportunity to turn a good offense into one of the league’s elite.