Working on the assumption that Walker might not be ready for the start of the season, what does this mean for the Raiders' offense? Al Davis gave Walker a six-year, $55 million deal to be the team's big-play threat, but mitigating circumstances -- like concussions and a suspect offensive line -- could alter those plans.
Or maybe not. Davis has always been infatuated with strong-armed quarterbacks and fast wide receivers. JaMarcus Russell certainly qualifies as the former, and even if Walker is on the shelf for part of the '08 season, Drew Carter qualifies for the latter. SI.com's Bucky Brooks thinks the underrated wideout could prove to be one of the Raiders' smartest offseason acquisitions.
Carter, who caught 38 passes for 517 yards with four touchdowns in his final season with the Panthers, was signed to be the team's third receiver, but his surprising performance during offseason workouts may lead to a bigger role.Man, wouldn't that be nice? I'm pretty sure it'll happen, not so much because the Raiders are due some good fortune, but because it'll highlight the fact that there was no need to waste all that dough on Walker. Whatever, if Oakland's offense can progress past "cringeworthy", a distinction it's held since 2003, then no one will care.
"He has been really impressive," said a team observer. "He has looked like the best player at the position during workouts."
Carter flashed glimpses of developing into a top-flight playmaker during his four-year stint with the Panthers, but he never became the complementary receiver the team envisioned. However, Raiders' officials believe that they Carter may be on the verge of a breakout season.