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Bruce Irvin: Raiders ready to 'capture this AFC West'

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Bruce Irvin didn't leave the Seahawks to join a sinking ship.

The new Raiders pass rusher believes the fun will continue in Oakland, where general manager Reggie McKenzie has built a roster generating plenty of buzz.

"You could definitely tell it's a tight group. We're on the way up," Irvin told ESPN.com's Paul Gutierrez.

"You have a lot of guys who are willing to listen to the older guys, so that's the greatest thing about coming to a situation like this ... I have to say, it's a bunch of guys who are hungry," Irvin said. "They are ready to take the next step. We know what we have to do. We've seen the blueprint to win a Super Bowl -- it's running the ball and playing great defense. I think we are ready to take that next step and really capture this AFC West."

Irvin also promised this wouldn't be his last sound bite, saying: "They didn't bring me here to be a follower. I'm a very outspoken guy. ... I'm coming to be a leader. I'm not stepping on any toes, but if I have something to say, I am going to say it."

The pairing of Irvin and All-Pro quarterback-wrecker Khalil Mack makes this Oakland defense a factor in the deep and talented AFC West. It's not crazy to ponder a division crown, but the Raiders are among a handful of promising young clubs -- including the Jaguars, Titans and Bucs -- who need to turn offseason potential into wins.

According to Irvin, that won't be a problem for the Silver and Black.

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