Raiders wrestling with roster decisions

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Raiders wrestling with roster decisions

ALAMEDA -- Linebacker Aaron Curry is eligible to be activated to the 53-man roster on Wednesday.Cornerback Ron Bartell is eligible to be activated in time to play Sunday at Baltimore."We haven't made a decision on either one of those yet," Raiders coach Dennis Allen said Monday at his weekly media conference.And so it goes.Because remember, it's not as easy as simply activating a player; there has to be a corresponding roster move. And the salary cap has to be taken into consideration.Plus, with the Raiders' top two running backs nursing high ankle sprains, the potential of signing another player has to be taken into account as well."There's only so many spots you've got," Allen said.Bartell was injured in the season opener, suffering a fractured shoulder blade against San Diego."We have until Saturday to make that decision," Bartell said, "so Im going to put another good week of practice in, and if all goes well at practice, and they deem me fit and ready to play, then Ill be ready to play."I made some good progress, but you know, missing seven weeks, just not being in game shape, its tough to get back. But I definitely feel a lot better, a lot more confident. Ive got another week to get prepared, and thats what I plan on doing and well make that decision on Saturday."The case for Curry, though, is especially curious since Allen had recently said he "anticipated" activating the high-energy linebacker with knee issues for the Tampa Bay game."Well, I still think, at the end of the day, theres some question there exactly where he is physically," Allen said of Curry. "But the other thing that I said was, Im not going to make that decision until I feel I have to. So, thats part of the deal, too, and we didnt feel like we had to make a decision at that point in time. But were getting closer to that point where we got to make a decision."Two other injured Raiders who have remained on the 53-man roster, though, are making strides.Right tackle Khalif Barnes (groin) and cornerback Shawntae Spencer (right foot) were both injured at Miami in Week 2. The Raiders will work out Spencer on Tuesday to test him out and Barnes is expected to practice Wednesday."We'll see, I've worked hard to get back here and did everything that was asked," said Spencer, who has trained on the anti-gravity treadmill alterG. "So all we can do is seeI'm just pretty much a go out and wing it-kind of guy. So we'll go out, do whatever they say, and see how it plays out."Willie Smith, meanwhile, has played in place of Barnes and has had a rough go of it. Sunday, he allowed a sack and his holding penalty negated a 47-yard touchdown pass from Carson Palmer to Derek Hagan. Of course, had Smith not held Michael Bennett, Palmer would have been crushed by Bennett and the pass never would have been thrown.

Oakland, Alameda County to vote on possible Raiders stadium term sheet next week

Oakland, Alameda County to vote on possible Raiders stadium term sheet next week

The Oakland City Council and Alameda County Supervisors will soon hold a public hearing and vote on a term sheet for a stadium proposal designed to keep the Raiders in Oakland, the City of Oakland announced on Friday afternoon.

These actions will occur on Dec. 13, as local authorities attempt to expedite a stadium plan that will prevent the Raiders from being approved to relocate to the Las Vegas market.

Oakland and Alameda County have paired with Fortress Investment Group to create a stadium funding plan that does not include taxpayer dollars. The public will contribute to infrastructure improvements, but stadium construction will come from private sources.

The private investment group is fronted by former NFL players Ronnie Lott and Rodney Peete.

Details of this stadium framework were released by the city of Oakland on Friday afternoon. 

The term sheet calls for 105 acres of Coliseum site land for a 55,000-seat football stadium and 7,000 parking spaces, with another 15 acres reserved for an Athletics ballpark. If all goes according to plan, the term sheet set a target date for the stadium to be ready by the 2021-22 season. The plan also accounts for  mixed use areas on the site that could be used for ancillary development. 

The financial framework calls $200 million in public funds, generated through private and public bonds, would be used for infrastructure improvements. The Coliseum site land was valued at $150 million, and would be transferred to the Lott group. It is uncertain how the public will recoup that land value. 

The Lott Group would invest $400 million dollars, and the Raiders and the NFL would put in $500 million combined, with $200 million from the league's stadium loan program. The Raiders could also raise funds from the sale of personal seat lisences, a common funding tool used in new stadiums throughout the league. 

The stadium project plus infrastructure improvements is estimated at $1.3 billion. The Lott Group would be responsible for financial overruns. 

City and county votes are the next step in creating a plan enticing enough to the NFL that it would pump the brakes on allowing the Raiders to move to Las Vegas.

That is Raiders owner Mark Davis’ stated desire. He has not negotiated with local public officials in some time, pouring focus into a Las Vegas stadium plan that has already received $750 million in public subsidy to construct if the Raiders are given the green light to move.

There are several complications associated with this deal, most notably that Davis wants no part in it. The NFL is reportedly intrigued by Oakland’s market potential, and generally prefers that teams remain in their home markets.

Oakland and Alameda County will vote on whether to continue working on this term sheet and present it to the NFL. The league meets on Wednesday to discuss relocation, and East Bay officials want to show they have a viable alternative to keep the Raiders in Oakland. 

 

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