The Oakland Raiders will start the season with Jamarcus Russell as their starting quarterback. All of the signs point to Russell as the starter from ownership to coaching and free agency. The following are the top four reasons that Russell will start this year.
Ownership: Al Davis has over 60 million reasons to want Jamarcus Russell to succeed. First the investment in itself gives Russell another chance and secondly Al Davis truely loves this guy. Giving the moves Al Davis has done over the offseason by getting a offensive cordinator that is experience in working with young quarterbacks and having Russell workout in Arizona says Russell will get his shot yet again.
Coaching: Hue Jackson was the biggest offseason move for the Raiders and Russell thus far. Jackson was hired by Al Davis with no input from Tom Cable (Head Coach). Jackson has full rule over every position on the offense and that includes quarterback. Jackson will do away with the ZMB and incorporate the power line like the Ravens. He will also place a importance on running the ball to set up the pass that the Raiders should have done last year. This will make a young quarterback like Russell more comfortable in a new system for the third year in a row.
Skills: At Jamarcus Russell's pro day Mike Mayock draft guro for NFL.com said that Russell's pro day was the best pro day he had ever seen. This includes the likes of Payton & Eli Manning and Phillip Rivers. At LSU he ran a pro style offense and led the nation in passing effecency. Playing against Brady Quinn in the sugar bowl he destroyed him with his accuracy and power. According to Jumbo Fisher his old offensive cordinator he very intelligent and knows the game plans inside and out.
Competition: This is one of the big reasons why Russell will be our opening day starter. According to head coach Tom Cable there will be a competition for the starting quarterback job. As of today you have Charlie Frye and Bruce Gradkowski journymen with no real chance of being a starting quarterback with any other NFL team. If this was a true competition at least one to two more quarterbacks with better resumes would be on the roster. During training camp when the quarterbacks run seven on seven drills this is where Russell will destroy his competition. Remember Russell excells in these types of drills like no other.
Russell may not be the future for the Oakland Raiders, but he is the present for all of the reason above. Raider fans can only hope that Hue Jackson brings out the best in Jamarcus Russell and the Oakland Raider offense. If Russell turns it around this year the Raiders can make a run for the superbowl for the next ten years. If Russell can not then this will set the Oakland Raiders back five more years.