Raiders-Chargers matchups to watch: Shaughnessy vs. Harris

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Raiders-Chargers matchups to watch: Shaughnessy vs. Harris

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the second part in a series that spotlights three Raiders-Chargers matchups to watch Monday, 7:15 p.m. (ESPN) at The Coliseum.

Matchup No. 3: Streater vs. Jammer
Matchup No. 1: (coming Monday morning)

Tale of the tape:
Matt Shaughnessy: 6-foot-5, 285 pounds, fourth season, Wisconsin
Mike Harris: 6-foot-5, 310 pounds, rookie, UCLAShaughnessy was on his way to being one of the elite defensive ends in the NFL last year before a shoulder injury suffered in the Raiders' third game ended his season. He is healthy now.Harris is an undrafted rookie free agent charged with protecting Pro Bowl quarterback Philip Rivers' blind side.Is this where the ridiculous meets the sublime for the Raiders? Meh."You can't take anybody lightly," Shaughnessy said this week. "You've got to treat everybody the same and prepare the same way and that's what we're doing this week."Still, it would seem to be a mismatch in favor of Oakland. Even if Shaughnessy, with his 12 career sacks, is known more as a run-stuffing end and Harris, playing in place of the injured Jared Gaither, was a right tackle at UCLA.In the teams' first meeting last year, Chargers left tackle Marcus McNeil had his season ended by an Aaron Curry hit and Kamerion Wimbley went on to record four sacks in the game. Obviously, Harris and Rivers hope the same is not in store Monday night."It's really amazing," Harris told the Los Angeles Times. "It's a dream come true. I've worked my whole life to get to where I want to be, and now my teammates and coaches are counting on me."Starting Monday, I'm going to have a chance to show the world who Michael Harris is, and show the world I belong in the NFL."Or not."I mean, he looked pretty good on film," said Shaughnessy, who had four sacks as a rookie and seven more in 2010. "Obviously, they're very happy with what he's doing, so he's playing."

Raiders snap count: Nate Allen plays every defensive down

Raiders snap count: Nate Allen plays every defensive down

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Raiders left guard Kelechi Osemele spent Thursday morning in a Kansas City hospital with an undisclosed illness, and was unfit to play that night against Kansas City.

That was a big blow to the Silver and Black, who played a pivotal game against the Chiefs without their tone-setter up front.

The Raiders have depth along the offensive line, giving position coach Mike Tice options to fill Osemele’s spot. He took an unconventional route, having rookie Vadal Alexander take most of the snaps for Osemele.

Alexander, who has played tackle as a professional but spent most of his collegiate career at guard, took 66 snaps at left guard. That information comes from the official NFL game book.

Jon Feliciano, typically the first guard off the bench, rotated series with Alexander early on. That apparently stopped as the game progressed, with Feliciano taking just nine offensive snaps.

Alexander allowed four quarterback pressures including a hit on Derek Carr.

Safety Nate Allen played all 55 defensive snaps at strong safety for Karl Joseph, who missed Thursday’s game with a toe injury.

Denico Autry and Dan Williams also saw more action with Darius Latham and Stacy McGee out with ankle injuries.

The Raiders played out of the shotgun and pistol formations to protect Carr’s ailing right pinky, which generally kept a third receiver on the field. Seth Roberts played 71 snaps on Thursday, and didn’t do much with them. He had just two catches for 12 yards on nine targets. He also had two drops.

Let’s take a look at the entire Raiders snap count:

OFFENSE
75 – OL Donald Penn, OL Austin Howard, OL Gabe Jackson, QB Derek Carr, OL Rodney Hudson
74 – WR Amari Cooper
71 – WR Seth Roberts
66 – OL Vadal Aleander
63 – WR Michael Crabtree
52 – RB Latavius Murray
44 – TE Clive Walford
23 – TE Mychal Rivera
18 – RB Jalen Richard
12 – WR Andre Holmes
9 – OL Jon Feliciano, OL Menelik Watson
7 – FB Jamize Olawale
2 – RB DeAndre Washington

DEFENSE
55 – S Nate Allen, LB Perry Riley, CB Sean Smith, S Reggie Nelson, LB Malcolm Smith, CB David Amerson
52 – DE Khalil Mack
48 – DL Denico Autry, LB Bruce Irvin
25 – DT Dan WIlliams
23 – CB TJ Carrie
15 – DT Justin Ellis
10 – DE James Cowser
6 – DL Branden Jackson

SPECIAL TEAMS
25 – Daren Bates
21 – Keith McGIll
19 – Andre Holmes, Jamize Olawale, Brenden Trawick, Cory James
18 – Taiwan Jones
15 – Nate Allen
13 – James Cowser, Marquette King, Jon Condo
11 – TJ Carrie
10 – Branden Jackson
8 – Sebastian Janikowski, Dexter McDonald
6 – Khalil Mack, Denico Autry, Bruce Irvin, Dan Williams, Justin Ellis, Tyrell Adams
5 – Jalen Richard
4 – Donald Penn, Austin Howard, Gabe Jackson, Vadal Alexander, Clive Walford, Mychal Rivera, Menelik Watson, DeAndre Washington
NOTE: Snap counts taken from official NFL game book

Report: Aldon Smith meets with Roger Goodell, NFL officials

Report: Aldon Smith meets with Roger Goodell, NFL officials

Raiders edge rusher Aldon Smith is pushing to get reinstated into the NFL after more than a year banished after repeated violations of the league’s substance abuse policy, and took a necessary step in his quest on Friday.

Smith met with NFL officials and Commissioner Roger Goodell, according to an NFL Network report, to plead his case for reinstatement.

It’s uncertain how that meeting went, or how it will influence Goodell’s ruling on Smith’s case. The commissioner is judge and jury in these situations, and there is no formal timetable for him to issue a ruling.

Smith applied for reinstatement on Oct. 3, a few weeks after his application could get turned in. He was eligible for reinstatement on Nov. 17, but the NFL has remained silent on the matter in accordance with league policy.

The Raiders hope Smith can return this season, and give the Raiders pass rush another potent weapon off the edge. There are only three games left in the regular season, but Smith is in fantastic shape and wouldn’t need much practice time to be ready to contribute as a rotational pass rusher.

Smith spent 120 days in a rehab facility in Colorado starting this summer, and hopes his case is sound enough that Goodell will let him return to work.

Smith signed with the Raiders just before the 2015 season began. He was released by the 49ers following his latest run-in with the law, which resulted in misdemeanor charges of DUI with a prior conviction, hit and run and vandalism.

He played nine games in Silver and Black before the NFL took punitive action. He has been away from the team ever since, only able to communicate with the team’s director of player engagement. He also stays in touch with his teammates.

Interviewed briefly at a Warriors game in early November, Smith expressed confidence that he would return when eligible. That hasn’t happened yet, though a meeting will certainly increase the possibility Goodell makes a ruling in this case.

Here are the requirements for reinstatement, according to the league’s substance abuse policy:

Any Player who has been banished under Stage Three may apply formally in writing for reinstatement no sooner than 60 days before the one-year anniversary date of the letter so banishing him.

The application should include all pertinent information about the Player’s:

(a) Treatment;
(b) Abstinence from Substances of Abuse throughout the entire period of his banishment;
(c) Involvement with any Substances of Abuse related incidents; and
(d) Arrests and/or convictions for any criminal activity, including Substances of Abuse-related offenses.

Set forth below are the procedures to be used when an application is received by the Commissioner.

1. Within 45 days of receipt of the application, the Player will be interviewed by the Medical Director and the Medical Advisor, after which a recommendation will be made to the Commissioner with regard to the Player’s request for reinstatement.

2. The Player will execute appropriate medical release forms that will enable the Commissioner’s staff and NFLPA Executive Director’s staff to review the Player’s substance abuse history, including but not limited to attendance at counseling sessions (individual, group and family); attendance at 12-step and other self-help group meetings; periodic progress reports; and all diagnostic findings and treatment recommendations.

3. The Player will submit to urine testing by an NFL representative at a frequency determined by the Medical Advisor.

4. The Player will agree in a meeting with the Commissioner or his representative(s) to comply with the conditions imposed by the Commissioner for his reinstatement to the status of an active Player.

5. All individuals involved in the process will take steps to enable the Commissioner to render a decision within 60 days of the receipt of the application.