Raiders have target in mind

Free agency has officially begun and the Oakland Raiders will be players. With the defense proving its worth last year, the focus will be on the offensive side of the ball.

First and foremost, Oakland will make a run at Jeff Garcia – but they might have to wait. Garcia has a visit scheduled with the Denver Broncos and the Tampa Buccaneers are also expected to compete for his services.

Garcia may not start, however, in either of those cities. If he were to sign with Oakland there is a good chance that he will be named the starter out of the gate.

Oakland is in position to offer him enough money to make things interesting but if he decides he wants to win now he could end up signing with another team.

The other area of focus for Oakland is tight end – a spot that has continually underperformed.

Daniel Graham would have been a focus if there weren't so much interest in the tight end.

SilverandBlack.com has confirmed that four teams (Minnesota Vikings, Denver Broncos, New Orleans Saints and Seattle Seahawks) would show significant interest in Graham.

Oakland, without an abundance of cap space, can't hope to compete with those teams.

Another name that has surfaced is Eric Johnson. It was three years ago that Johnson led the San Francisco 49ers in receiving with 82 receptions, including 22 grabs on third down.

Johnson then sustained a foot injury in 2005 and tore his plantar fascia, ending his year. In 2003, it was a fractured collarbone that claimed his entire year. Johnson came back last year to snare 32 passes for 292 yards with two touchdowns and, if healthy, could be back on the upswing.

He would also come in much cheaper than Graham and could be a viable option while they look to develop the position further.

Whatever route they go, the Raiders are clearly putting the emphasis on the offensive side of the ball and for good cause.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Raiders are interested in Detroit defensive end James Hall.

A seven-year veteran out of Michigan, Hall collected 34 tackles, five tackles and a forced fumble. He was placed on injured reserve in early November. In 2004, Hall had 11.5 sacks for the Lions.

He would be an immediate upgrade to a unit looking to add pressure across from Derrick Burgess.


SB Report Top Stories