If you look at the most famous poem in Raiders history, it provides a roadmap to the season.
“The autumn wind is a pirate, blustering in from sea. With a rollicking song he sweeps along, swaggering boisterously.”
The Raiders enter the 2019 season having upgraded a majority of their roster. Expectations are high from fans but insultingly low from Las Vegas. Hard Knocks is covering them almost as well as Gareon Conley covers wide receivers. The Raiders allowed an embarrassingly large amount of sacks last season while also recording an even more embarrassingly low number of sacks. But this year, the Raiders don’t care. As this year’s autumn wind just now begins to blow, the Raiders moved on from the disappointments of last season.
“His face is weathered beaten, he wears a hooded sash, with his silver hat about his head, and a bristly black mustache.”
These characteristics can be describing a seasoned veteran. The Raiders endured recent pain, Derek Carr especially, in these recent seasons, but appear poised to change that. The hooded sash can be representative of how the Raiders are trying to avoid drama, or at least trying to keep the drama off of Hard Knocks. The silver hat is clearly the Raiders’ helmet and the black mustache represents the team’s playoff appearance in 2016. It is constantly in sight, acting as a constant reminder of what happens when this team succeeds. Many men strive for a great mustache at some point in their lives. The 2016 Raiders had a beautiful mustache of a season and after a few peach fuzz seasons, the 2019 team aspires to regrow it.
“He growls as he storms the country, a villain big and bold. And all the trees shake and quiver and quake, as he robs them of their gold.”
With the Raiders traveling more than any other team this year, there is a lot of country storming to do. While only preseason, but the Raiders’ starters looked electric and felt like a different, and potentially villainous, team.
“The autumn wind is a Raider, pillaging just for fun, he’ll knock you round and upside down, and laugh when he’s conquered and won.”
It is no coincidence that the first time “Raider” is mentioned, it is brought up during the mentions of most success. Initially, the autumn wind is a pirate, merely arriving at the country he is planning to pillage. As a pirate, the autumn wind is a gold thief and a villain, but as a Raider, the autumn wind is a conqueror.
Success comes from the entire crew working together towards a common goal. Without success, Blackbeard would simply be a bearded man with a boat.
The Raiders have added a lot of different players this offseason. They have added many high-character rookies as well as some controversial veterans. This combination can be used to get under opponents’ skin while having the leadership to keep things in control. Having this combination is an ideal base for restoring the legacies of The Autumn Wind and the Oakland Raiders franchise.