The Raiders would like to retain defensive end Lamarr Houston, left tackle Jared Veldheer and running back Rashad Jennings. General manager Reggie McKenzie and head coach Dennis Allen have expressed that sentiment in the past.
The Raiders are expected to meet with representatives of all three players during the NFL scouting combine, which runs throughout the week in Indianapolis.
Negotiations will heat up in the coming days, especially with an exclusive negotiating window closing soon. Other teams can negotiate with those players beginning March 8, three days ahead of the March 11 start of free agency. At that date, Veldheer, Houston and Jennings will formally hit the open market.
Allen hopes those three players are re-signed before then.
“That’s obviously what you want to try to be able to do,” Allen told CSN Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco on Thursday at the NFL scouting combine. “You never know how these negotiations are going to go. They never happen as fast as you want them to – any of them. And I’m the worst critic because I want it done right now. But I think, after having conversations with those players, I think they want to be here.”
Each player has publicly expressed a desire to return. Veldheer said he wants to be a Raider for life. Jennings said he wants to remain in an offensive scheme that fits his talent perfectly. While Houston expressed some pessimism about the Raiders’ desire to bring him back, he and Allen cleared the air after the season.
“They want to be here, and we want them here. And I think when you add those two elements together, usually you’re able to get something done. Hopefully we’ll be able to get something done with these guys.”