Earlier this week we took to social media and asked Raider Nation to submit questions about all things Silver and Black. Your questions are appreciated - let's get right to the Q&A.
*From Dustin R: Any chance the Raiders can hit 8 wins this season? *
JK**: I am not in the prediction game with wins and losses. That being said, I don't see why not. New coaching staff, Derek Carr's second year at quarterback, retooled offensive line and backfield, more weapons, major changes on defense – on paper, it's looking up. But the games aren't played on paper. I'm cautiously optimistic.
From Chris F: Any chance raiders look at Reggie Wayne for WR veteran leadership? He may be past his prime put could really help this young WR corps learn how to play the position.
JK: I wouldn't rule anything out. However, Wayne's been on the free agent market for awhile and there haven't been any serious overtures from any interested teams. With Michael Crabtree, Amari Cooper, Rod Streater, Andre Holmes, et al. I can't see it.
From Paul G: Do you see Derek Carr in the future as a tier-one quarterback?*
JK: Personally, I do. I think he is part of the next generation of great quarterbacks in the NFL. He definitely needs to push the ball up the field on more consistent basis. New weapons should help. Carr wants to be great and he wants to win Super Bowls. Although he is an NFL quarterback, he knows he hasn't accomplished anything. He can make all the throws. He's athletic enough…this year will tell the tale.
From Nick G: What style defense is Ken Norton running with this team?
JK: This is a question on many minds. Aggressive. As far as scheme and concepts are concerned, all that will take shape as we get into camp next week. This is high on my daily priority list, and I'll bring you my observations from camp starting a week from today.
From Vince H: Does Derek Carr finally have the weapons to lead us to the promised land?? *
JK: Vince, I think so. From an improved running game, to a shored up offensive line and more explosive guys to throw to, Carr will have the entire field at his disposal.
*From Leo C: How many quarterbacks are going to be on the 53? *
JK: The Raiders have historically kept three.
*From Patterson A: What will we do offensively this year? Will we run or stretch the field more? *
JK: This is going to be interesting to watch. I think you're going to see a multi-faceted offense. Under offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave this offense will be able to go "run and shoot," "Power I," and everything in-between. Up-tempo, ground and pound, this offense, in theory, should be able to do whatever the situation calls for.
*From Ciprian P: I see a lot of similarities between the '15 Raiders and '92 Cowboys. Big three, great drafting, precise free agency, big o-line. Thoughts? *
JK: Carr, Latavius Murray and Cooper would be the "big three" here in your scenario (Quarterback Troy Aikman, running back Emmitt Smith and wide receiver Michael Irvin – Dallas triplets). That's not a bad analogy – might even throw tight end Clive Walford into that mix (Jay Novacek). Again, on paper I can see it. Everything is wait and see right now.
From Josh M: With RG still a question mark on the offensive line will the team pursue G Evan Mathis? *
JK: I personally think the coaching staff will see what they have before making any drastic moves. J'Marcus Webb was added in free agency and he has seen time at that spot in the offseason. The Raiders drafted guard Jon Feliciano in the 4th round. I think a move is possible if the coaches don't like what they see once the pads go on. General Manager Reggie McKenzie, once again, is on record saying he's always looking to improve the roster.
From Sexton M: Which team in the upcoming season should be the most challenging to defeat?*
JK: Any given Sunday, right? Every matchup in the NFL is a tough one. It all starts with the AFC West. Denver is on top and the Raiders have struggled the past few seasons against the Broncos. Pittsburgh on the road, Green Bay at home…there are a lot of tough games on the schedule.
*From Reilly M: Do you think the Carr and Cooper Connection will be dominant? *
JK: In time, yes. Unfortunately the two did not have much of an opportunity to work together during the offseason due to Carr's injury. They will have the preseason and training camp to work on timing and develop a rapport. But, it could take a few games into the regular season before you see them really click. Down the line, this could be a very productive tandem.
*From Tyrone C: Do you think Murray will be a legitimate starting running back? *
JK: I think he can be. He has the size, speed and vision. He just needs to play. We've gotten a taste of what he can do. He's going to get every opportunity to prove it.