Raiders Camp Battle: Bartell vs. Chekwa


Raiders Camp Battle: Bartell vs. Chekwa


Ron Bartell vs. Chimdi Chekwa
Tale of the tape:
Bartell: 8th season, 6-1, 210, Howard
Chekwa: 2nd season, 6-0, 190, Ohio State
Roster Depth chart More camp battles
Both are physical, rugged hard-hitters for cornerbacks, even if both are coming off season-ending injuries. Bartell, in fact, suffered a broken neck in his first game for the St. Louis Rams last season so there are plenty of questions regarding his durability and willingness to, well, stick his neck out there on a runaway running back. He, however, has no qualms. At least, not yet. "I didn't actually know that I had fractured my neck," said Bartell, who surrendered two completions the three times he was thrown at, for 48 yards, last season. "It felt more like a stingerso I never had to go through that anxiety of getting carted off the field or losing feeling or paralysis or anything. I'm fine. I'm ready to go." Chekwa, meanwhile, dislocated his shoulder on the first day of padded practice last summer, then was shut down with a hamstring injury after appearing in four games with one start. "Last year, I think I competed," said Chekwa, who gave up nine completions the 14 times he was targeted, for 126 yards and a touchdown. "I am happy that I competed, but I had a couple of injuries last year. I am looking forward to doing a better job of staying healthy this year and staying on the field."

Carr discusses contract negotiations with Raiders: 'These things take time'

Carr discusses contract negotiations with Raiders: 'These things take time'

Raiders general Reggie McKenzie plans to extend quarterback Derek Carr’s contract this offseason. That isn’t a new thing, something that has been in the works for some time. He re-affirmed that fact last week, citing his team’s commitment to work out a long-term deal likely the biggest in franchise history.

Carr was reportedly frustrated with the pace of contract talks after the NFL draft – they’re supposed to heat up this spring and summer – but said he believes a deal will get worked out before training camp begins.

That’s his deadline for an offseason deal, the point where he wants focus honed on football.

“I have an agent who is in charge of that and I am confident that he and Mr. (Reggie) McKenzie will work it out,” Carr, a Fresno State alum, told the Fresno Bee. “I am only focused on becoming a better football player and helping my teammates become better players.

“I have complete faith it will get done before training camp. These things take time. The Raiders know I want to be here; this is my family, and I know they want me to be their quarterback.”

The sides have discussed parameters of a long-term deal, with greater specifics to be ironed out in the future. Carr has long said he wants to be a Raider his entire career. The Raiders want him as the public face of their franchise. A new deal is expected by all parties, a sentiment that has never wavered on either side.

Carr is scheduled to make a $977,519 in base salary in 2017, the final year of his rookie contract.

Raiders offseason program intensifies as OTA sessions begin

Raiders offseason program intensifies as OTA sessions begin

The Raiders offseason program is five weeks old. Players have lifted weights. They’ve improved cardiovascular shape. They’ve done drills in position groups and discussed schematics. They’ve added rookies to a group now 90 strong.

On Monday, they can finally put on helmets. They still can’t wear pads or have full contact, but the Raiders can play 11-on-11. Receivers will be covered. Quarterback Derek Carr will throw into traffic. Generally speaking, the competition cranks up a bit.

The NFL collective bargaining agreement has strict mandates regarding offseason activity, and a period formally called “Phase III” allows for more realistic on-field football work.

The Raiders will conduct 10 OTA sessions over the next three weeks. The media can watch three of them. Tuesday is the first, with another in each of the next two weeks. These sessions are technically voluntary, though the Raiders generally hover around perfect attendance. Head coach Jack Del Rio prefers his team be unified in the offseason. Players know it and show up.

There is a mandatory minicamp from June 13-15 which wraps the offseason program and starts a quiet period that extends until training camp begins in late July.

These OTAs offer an opportunity for new players to learn the system, for adjustments to be made and for chemistry to be built heading into a 2017 season where expectations are high.