Kevin Burnett absent for Raiders OTAs

Kevin Burnett absent for Raiders OTAs
May 27, 2014, 1:30 pm
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Kevin Burnett recorded 83 tackles, 2.5 sacks and one interception in 16 games last year. (USATSI)

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ALAMEDA -- The Raiders had near perfect attendance on Tuesday for their first Organized Team Activity. Defensive tackle Antonio Smith was excused with injury. Guard Lucas Nix watched from the sideline.

Outside linebacker Kevin Burnett was simply a no-show. Head coach Dennis Allen did not elaborate on why Burnett skipped school, but he said he wasn’t concerned with the absence.

“I’ve had communication with Kevin this whole time,” Allen said. “This is a voluntary camp. Players can make their own decisions and they have families and things in their personal lives that they have to make sure they take care of. I’m not concerned about that at all.”

The Raiders had Sio Moore playing weakside linebacker with the first team, with Khalil Mack on the strong side and Nick Roach in the middle. They’re experimenting with positions during the offseason in an attempt to get Moore and Mack on the field at the same time.

That would require Moore to switch from the strong side to the weak side, a position he played some in college.

That could theoretically drop Burnett to the second team, an unusual spot for a player who’s been a three-down linebacker for most of his career.

That move would be dependent on Moore’s success, and the Raiders are clearly trying to find a solid pairing with Roach and Mack, who is expected to start and contribute right away as a pass rusher.

“I’ll start off by saying this, we’re going to take a look at a lot of different people in a lot of different areas because we got a lot of new players on this football team. And so as we get a better feel for these guys and we get a better opportunity to work with them, we’ll settle in more on positions as we move along,” Allen said. “But I think initially early we’re going to take a look at a lot of people in a lot of different areas.”