It’s that moment we have been waiting and hoping for but now it’s official- the Raiders are moving to Las Vegas. At the league meeting in Phoenix, 31 out of the 32 league owners voted in favour of the relocation. Credit must go to owner Mark Davis and other Raiders officials for sticking to their guns and getting the move done.
The $1.9 billion stadium will begin to be built straight away and should be ready for 2020 (that’s right, few more years to wait im afraid). More information on buying tickets can be found here, and if you are interested in where the state of the art building will be placed then head to our dedicated page on the matter here.
It’s an extremely exciting time for the team and fans all round the world, and its sure to be an amazing opening game when it does finally take place. There is no doubt that a few years down the line that a Super Bowl will come to Las Vegas, for which the Raiders should be on the list of favourites to be in thanks to their form this year. Let the mad rush for tickets begin!
With the annual league meeting just round the corner, it’s time for those of us that want the Vegas Raiders to become a reality to start paying attention to all the NFL news going around. The potential relocation is easily the biggest thing on the agenda for all league owners, and one that has taken a positive turn recently.
The league set the relocation fee for Mark Davis and the Oakland Raiders at $325 million -$375million, per sources. Compared to the $650 million the Rams and Chargers both paid to go to Los Angeles, that’s a complete bargain. It must be said this should be a credit to the league as the relocation fee was one of the major problems the Raiders faced from now until the voting period, but it seems that it may have just sealed the deal.
The fee could suggest that the league really believes that the required 75% of 32 league owners will vote in favour of the move. It also gives owners a hint that the league may finally be backing the move for once, so all around there are positive signs.
There are some questions arising about the change of markets, going from Oakland which is apparently ‘extremely passionate’ about its football and the sixth largest market in the US to Las Vegas, an unknown quantity and the 40th largest market. Moves from San Diego and St Louis already caused quite a stir, and its whether owners want a trend of teams just moving wherever they fancy to continue.
To that I would say how can Oakland be passionate about its football in any shape if local officials have shown no desire to upgrade the current stadium and keep the team? If citizens are passionate there would be a group come forward to put pressure on local officials to do more for the team, of which there have been none. The only challenge came from an ex-player and that didnt seem to materialise at all.
Free agent Jelani Jenkins, 6 feet and 240lbs, has signed with the Raiders.
The former Dolphins linebacker was drafted in 2013 at #104 overall (fourth round). He has played a total of 53 games in his career so far, which has seen more than his fair share of injuries, most notably to his knee last season. Of those games, 34 were starts, including seven last season.
The Raiders will be hoping that Jelani Jenkins, who plays mostly weak-side, can capture his 2014 form when he led the Miami team with 108 tackles of which 81 were solo efforts.
Welcome to the dark side, Jelani.
Free Agent Tight End Jared Cook is to join the Raiders from the Green Bay Packers. A former third round pick in 2009 out of Carolina, Cook played for the Titans and the Rams before joining the Packers. Now as a Raider, Jared Cook will provide Derek Carr with a huge target on offense to compliment a powerful set of wide receivers.
In the 2016 season Jared Cook played 10 games, making 30 receptions for 377 yards during the regular season. However, when it mattered post-season, Cook came up with another 18 receptions and two touchdowns, including an incredible sideline catch to set them up for the win against the no.1 seed Cowboys.
Standing at 6-5 and weighing 254 pounds, Cook is a formidable weapon for Carr. In his day the TE could run the 40yds in 4.45, so he is sure to stretch the field. No team can afford to just put a corner on him and expect not to be thrown over. The opposition will need a safety and/or linebacker to help out.
Derek Carr should be thanked for the signing as much as GM Reggie McKenzie, after it was reported he lobbied for the playmaking tight end hard. Cooks contract is for 2-years $12.2million with the first year being fully guaranteed.
On Monday 13th March the Raiders finally made themselves involved in free agency by signing ex-Vikings wide receiver and kick returner Cordarrelle Patterson to a 2-year $8.5million contract. The signing was a bit of a shock due to their being few links between the player and Oakland, but one thing is for sure; this gives the Raiders a very different and new dynamic on offense and makes them dangerous from every kick-off.
Patterson has excelled as a kick returner since he came into the league, earning All-Pro honours last season at the special teams position (note: for those counting, that’s three first team all-pro players on the Raiders roster). The Raiders know all too well the threat this guy poses after he returned a kick for a touchdown against them in 2015. His receiving skills on the other hand have been questioned, and it will be interesting to see how he is incorporated into the aerial attack that was clicking on all cylinders last season.
The speedy playmaker may remind fans and players alike of Al Davis’ old philosophy that speed kills all else, so let’s just hope he brings the ‘Just win baby!’ with him as well.
Cordarrelle Patterson Stats
|Yards per Catch