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Raiders defensive coordinator Jason Tarver brings energy, passion to improving unit

Defensive coordinator Jason Tarver's contributions to the Oakland Raiders this season are much bigger than that obscene gesture at the officials that got him into so much hot water.

Tarver has overseen a remarkable improvement on the defense while incorporating 10 new starters who mostly came in with little fanfare.

The Raiders went browsing through the bargain basement to bring in many of the newcomers, signing five free agents to one-year deals. Only the addition of Charles Woodson generated much interest while players like cornerbacks Mike Jenkins and Tracy Porter, linebackers Nick Roach and Kevin Burnett and defensive linemen Pat Sims, Vance Walker and Jason Hunter were under-the-radar additions.