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Oakland Raiders Starting Lineup Prediction From CSN Bay Area

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The Oakland Raiders have finished their early off season programs and are not active again until training camp convenes in Napa on July 28th. While things can obviously change, it is never too early to speculate on who the starters will be when the Raiders host the San Diego Chargers on Monday Night Football to start the 2012 campaign.

Paul Gutierrez of CSN Bay Area did just that today on csnbayarea.com. For the most part, picking the Raiders starters is not that difficult as they are fairly thin at a lot of positions and do not have guys capable of really pushing the incumbent starter. Check Gutierrez's starting lineup along with my comments after the jump.

OFFENSE:

QB: Carson Palmer (With a full off season under his belt, Palmer must show if he can still play at a high level this season)

RB: Darren McFadden (The more interesting question is who will back up the injury prone starter)

FB: Marcel Reece (Reece turns a position that is near extinction in the NFL into a serious offensive threat)

WR1: Darrius Heyward-Bey (With a ton of hard work, DHB has gone from a big time flop to a solid receiver)

WR2: Denarius Moore (After a rookie season that had Raiders fans drooling over his potential, Moore hopes to improve in his second year)

Slot: Jacoby Ford (While Ford is the third best receiver on the team, I think that rookie Juron Criner will be the slot receiver, just because the Raiders need a possession type receiver to compliment their speedsters, and the tight end position will not provide that this season)

TE: Brandon Myers (If David Ausberry continues to improve, Myers may lose his job during the season)

LT: Jared Veldheer (From small college to potential pro bowler, Veldheer is a hell of a story)

LG: Cooper Carlisle (I am hoping Tony Bergstrom can push for this spot because Carlisle is way past his prime)

C: Stefen Wisniewski (Young Wiz could anchor this line for years to come, and dominate while doing it)

RG: Mark Brisiel (McKenzie signed this guy because he is a perfect fit for the blocking scheme, look for him to play real well for the Raiders)

RT: Khalif Barnes (Easily the Raiders' weakest position on the offensive line)

DEFENSE:

DE: Lamaar Houston (After a very good rookie season, disappointing sophomore season, the Raiders are hoping Houston will come into his own in his third year)

DT: Tommy Kelly (A different man ever since Richard Seymour came to the Silver and Black)

DT: Richard Seymour (Getting older, but can still play at a high level)

DE: Matt Shaughnessy (After an injury ended his year early last season, Shaugnessy could be a very solid player for the Raiders this season)

WLB: Aaron Curry (Rookie Miles Burris will push Curry for the starting role all season)

MLB: Rolando McClain (Dangerously close to becoming a bust)

SLB: Philip Wheeler (All around solid football player who is looking to show what he can do in a more diverse defense than what he played under for the Indianapolis Colts)

CB: Shawntae Spencer (One half of a completely new set of starting corner backs. Spencer is hoping to show the San Francisco 49ers that they made a mistake in cutting him)

CB: Ronald Bartell (Underrated corner because he has spent his career playing for the St. Louis Rams)

FS: Michael Huff (Still hasn't lived up to his draft status, but has grown into a solid FS)

SS: Tyvon Branch (He just continues to impress and is a very important part of the Raiders defense)