Report: Raiders have 'high' interest in OL Wharton

Report: Raiders have 'high' interest in OL Wharton
July 25, 2013, 10:00 am
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A knee injury prevented Travelle Wharton from playing in any games for the Bengals last year. (AP)

The Raiders have a "high" interest in offensive lineman Travelle Wharton, according to an ESPN report.

Wharton, 32, stands 6-foot-4 and weighs 312 pounds and can play both the guard and tackle position. But the report indicates that Wharton is looking for the biggest contract, which might not be offered by the Raiders.

The nine-year veteran who spent his first eight seasons with Carolina has already visited with his old team, and recently cancelled a visit with the Raiders' AFC West rivals from Denver. He is coming off a knee injury last season that prevented him from playing in any games for the Bengals.

Oakland's offensive line, which led the league's fifth-worst running game last season, isn't solidified. Mike Brisiel and Lucas Nix are expected to compete at the right guard position, and the hope is for second-round pick Menelik Watson -- signed on Thursday -- to challenge incumbent starter Khalif Barnes at right tackle.

Six-year veteran Mike Brisiel was brought in last year as an experienced zone blocker, but new offensive coordinator Greg Olson will deploy a power-blocking scheme that doesn't suit him.

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