ALAMEDA -- He was the first-ever draft pick of the Reggie McKenzie-Dennis Allen Era and, after nine games of his rookie season, Tony Bergstrom will get a look at playing right tackle for the Raiders this week.Bergstrom's purported break comes with veteran starter Khalif Barnes, who has been out since Week 2 with a groin injury and ensuing procedure, set to begin practicing Wednesday and second-year player Willie Smith struggling mightily of late."I feel like Im ready and Im just kind of waiting for that opportunity and Im just filling in wherever I can help," Bergstrom said. "Whatever I can do for this team Im happy to do."The 6-foot-5, 310-pound Bergstrom has played a total of three snaps all season, on special teams, and that was in Week 6.And after playing tackle in college at Utah, he was converted into a guard after the Raiders took him with a compensatory pick at the end of the draft's third round, No. 95 overall. Since the season began, though, he was getting more work on the outside."Obviously, playing tackle in the NFL is a whole different monster than playing in college," Bergstrom said, "so it took a minute to get used to that but Im feeling good there."It helps being able to see, especially seeing guys you play with all day and how they handle the competition out there. Being able to do that is better than watching film being able to see how your own guys play out there. Every game has been a learning experience for me. Ive tried to use it as such."An added bonus if Bergstrom does see time on the Raiders' O-line on Sunday? He'll play against brother-in-law Paul Kruger, an outside linebacker for the Ravens."Im not hoping one way or the other," Bergstrom said. "Obviously, Im always looking for my chance. I wouldnt see it as that way. Itd be hard. But you have to do your best. Just another nameless face out there."But would he cut-block his brother-in-law?"Oh," he said with a sly smile, "Id cut him."
Raiders' top draft choice about to get a look?
November 7, 2012, 5:04 pm