After the Raiders shocked the NFL and the oddsmakers by staying alive in the playoffs, questions about the immediate and near-future exist. With so much still undecided, how will the Raiders address these issues? More importantly, how should they? To provide insight, FPC Raiders writers Pete Camarillo and Ray Aspuria discuss these pressing issues.

With the exception of Renfrow and a cameo by Williams, what would your 2020 WR plans look like?

Camarillo

DRAFT A RECEIVER. This free agency class outside of Amari Cooper and A.J. Green isn’t great. Both have their injuries and inconsistencies but will command a lot of money. I doubt the Raiders are in on either but especially not Coop who the Raiders traded.

After that, people like Robby Anderson but I don’t know how much of an upgrade he is over Tyrell Williams. That is why the Raiders should look to draft a receiver. A fast, gamebreaker type. That’s what AB was supposed to be. That’s what this team is missing. You see what AJ Brown and Hollywood Brown are doing? I’d bet Al Davis would’ve loved one of those guys.

Even if they draft a guy, I wouldn’t mind kicking the tires on Odell Beckham Jr. or Jarvis Landry. The price has got to be right given their struggles and the team’s struggles this year. Really, nothing could go as bad as AB.

Aspuria

First, there’s a bevy of needs the Las Vegas Raiders need to address. And the team needs to husband it’s resources accordingly due to all the holes on that roster. That said, if wide receiver isn’t in the top 2 of needs come draft day, it would be a travesty. While Renfrow has been better than advertised, he isn’t a No. 1 WR. Despite the contract, neither is Williams. The Raiders are without a true alpha top wideout. So go get one that can live up to that potential in the draft. Free agency isn’t going to have a No. 1 available, thus, the Las Vegas should welcome a bright shiny new toy WR via the draft — fittingly also in Sin City.

If Trayvon Mullen is out for an extended period of time, what pairing would you use in Denver?

Aspuria

Daryl Worley and rookie Isaiah Johnson. The latter, a rookie, was inactive against the Chargers, but with the team ailing, there’s no reason for the Houston product to sit. Play the rookie against a QB that was taken in the same class. It’s the final game of the year and Johnson needs all the snaps he can get. Even if it is Johnson and Worley, expect Nevin Lawson to rotate in at both outside spots. Shoot, it’s probably going to be Lawson and Worley on the outside and Johnson relegated to special teams.

Camarillo

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That really depends on the health of the rest of the secondary. The blessing the Raiders have in the back end is most of their guys can play multiple positions. We’ve seen Worley play safety and corner. Riley and Joyner can play both spots. Harris can play either safety spot. Nelson has size to play corner. Either way, I’d like to see Isaiah Johnson get an extended look. Why not?

The Raiders went run heavy in the second half against LA. Should this be the plan in Denver? If not, how would you scheme for the Broncos? 

Camarillo

The Broncos and Chargers are holding hands in terms of rush defense. However, Denver is playing better of late so I would mix it up a bit. Denver also runs more 3-4 defense which should make life a bit more challenging for the Raiders especially if Gabe Jackson has to miss any time.

Thus, Oakland should work in more zone especially if Jackson, one of their best pullers, is out. I’d let the interior offensive line work those double teams and also work towards the backside. Make Denver play discipline gap football. Once they do, then you can start going downhill with the power and all that again in the second half.

Aspuria

Sounds like it has to be the plan. The early forecast for Denver is 42 degrees and we all know how Derek Carr does in that kind of weather. Despite the thin air, the Raiders should air it out, but we all know they won’t. Get a lead, squat on it and run the ball. That’s Gruden Ball and it’s exactly what we all saw in the victory over the Chargers. Conservative? Yes. But when it works and Raiders win, no complaints, no? 

CBS Sports published a  piece about Gruden going away from Carr? Without hyperbole, is this realistic?

Aspuria

The Raiders don’t have another QB on the roster that can take the reigns comfortably, so I think Carr stays. Keep Carr and draft a QB in the 2020 draft and groom said signal caller to perhaps eventually become the Las Vegas Raiders QB. Carr carries a near $19 million in base salary in 2020 and I find it difficult for another team to take on that fiscal responsibility via trade to acquire No. 4. Thus, he’ll remain but Las Vegas needs to see a legit QB competition. 

Camarillo

Yes, it’s over. Gruden made passive aggressive comments about running too many bubble screens last week. No win versus a lost Chargers team or even a more lost Denver team is going to change that. Carr’s trajectory just doesn’t match with this team. He can still be good on the right team but the Raiders are so young and they are still ascending. Carr is still making a lot of the same mistakes and proving that he is limited. The Raiders need a franchise QB who can put the team on their back, at least in big games, and Carr has yet to prove that. It has been six years, ya’ll. New decade. New market. Plenty of picks. Limited dead money by cutting him. It’s time folks.

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