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Assembling The Roster: How The 2016 Raiders Were Built


As the team prepares to head off to Training Camp 2016, the Oakland Raiders are currently at the maximum number of 90 players on their roster.

Suspended linebacker Aldon Smith does not count towards the team's 90-man limit.

Let's take a look at how the 2016 Raiders' roster was constructed.

NFL Draft (27)

Linebacker Neiron Ball 2015 Linebacker Cory James 2016
Guard Vadal Alexander 2016 Kicker Sebastian Janikowski 2000
Defensive end Shilique Calhoun 2016 Running back Taiwan Jones 2011
Quaterback Derek Carr 2014 Safety Karl Joseph 2016
Cornerback TJ Carrie 2014 Defensive end Khalil Mack 2014
Quarterback Connor Cook 2016 Cornerback Dexter McDonald 2015
Wide receiver Amari Cooper 2015 Defensive tackle Stacy McGee 2013
Defensive end Mario Edwards Jr. 2015 Running back Latavius Murray 2013
Defensive tackle Justin Ellis 2014 Tight end Derek Carr 2013
Offensive lineman Jon Feliciano 2015 Tight end Clive Walford 2015
Cornerback DJ Hayden 2013 Defensive end Jihad Ward 2016
Linebacker Ben Heeney 2015 Running back DeAndre Washington 2016
Guard Gabe Jackson 2014 Tackle Menelik Watson 2013
Safety Keith McGill 2014

The Silver and Black currently have 27 players on the roster that they've drafted. Kicker Sebastian Janikowski – drafted No. 17 overall in the 2000 NFL Draft – is the veteran of the group, with guard Vadal Alexander serving as the most-recent selection by General Manager Reggie McKenzie.

The Draft has been a goldmine for the Raiders as of late, and not just in the first few rounds, as McKenzie and the Raiders' front office have found quality players in the latter stages of the three-day event as well.

Free Agency (27)

Safety Nate Allen 2016 Safety Reggie Nelson 2016
Long snapper Jon Condo 2006 Fullback Jamize Olawale 2012
Wide receiver Derek Carr 2015 Offensive lineman Kelechi Osemele 2016
Long snapper Andrew East 2016 Tackle Donald Penn 2014
Free safety Chris Hackett 2015 Tight end Lee Smith 2015
Running back Roy Helu, Jr. 2015 Linebacker Malcolm Smith 2015
Tackle Austin Howard 2014 Cornerback Sean Smith 2016
Center Rodney Hudson 2015 Kicker Giorgio Tavecchio 2015
Outside linebacker Bruce Irvin 2016 Cornerback Neiko Thorpe 2014
Linebacker John Lotulelei 2015 Linebacker Korey Toomer 2015
Offensive lineman Matt McCants 2013 Safety Brynden Trawick 2016
Defensive back Dewey McDonald 2015 Tight end Colton Underwood 2015
Defensive end Damontre Moore 2016 Defensive tackle Dan Williams 2015
Fullback Marcel Reece 2008

Around the league, if you ask someone how to build a team, many national pundits say the same thing – build through the Draft and supplement through free agency – and that's precisely what the Raiders have done.

Reggie McKenzie has built the core of the Silver and Black (Derek Carr, Amari Cooper, Khalil Mack, Latavius Murray etc.) through the Draft and then supplemented the rest of the roster through free agency.

In particular, the free agent haul he was able to assemble this past offseason – headlined by Kelechi Osemele, Sean Smith and Bruce Irvin – has drawn rave reviews around the NFL.

Claimed Via Waivers (2)

Cornerback David Amerson 2015
Wide receiver Andre Holmes 2013

Amerson and Holmes are the only players the team currently has that were claimed via waivers, but both have been solid pickups for the Silver and Black.

After being claimed September 22, Amerson was statistically one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL in 2015, and since his arrival in 2013, Holmes has been a valuable piece on both offense and special teams for the Raiders.

Undrafted Free Agents (34)

Defensive lineman Denico Autry 2014 Defensive lineman Branden Jackson 2016
Linebacker Daren Bates 2016 Punter Marquette King 2012
Guard Mitch Bell 2015 Guard Denver Kirkland 2016
Running back George Atkinson III 2016 Defensive tackle Darius Latham 2016
Wide receiver K.J. Brent 2016 Wide receiver Max McCaffrey 2016
Center Ross Burbank 2016 Quarterback Matt McGloin 2013
Linebacker/defensive end James Cowser 2016 Wide receiver Jaydon Mickens 2016
Cornerback Kenneth Durden 2016 Tight end Ryan O'Malley 2016
Defensive back Chris Edwards 2016 Guard Oni Omoile 2016
Defensive back SaQwan Edwards 2016 Defensive tackle Leon Orr 2015
Linebacker Jimmy Hall 2015 Running back Jalen Richard 2016
Cornerback Antonio Hamilton 2016 Wide receiver Seth Roberts 2014
Wide receiver Joe Hansley 2016 Defensive end Greg Townsend 2016
Tight end Gabe Holmes 2015 Guard Terran Vaughn 2016
Wide receiver Johnny Holton 2016 Offensive lineman Torian White 2016
Defensive lineman Drew Iddings 2016 Linebacker Kyrie Wilson 2016
Wide Receiver Marvin Hall 2016 Wide Receiver Nathan Palmer 2016

As of now, the Raiders currently have 34 undrafted free agents on the 90-man roster.

While many of these players won't make the final 53-man roster, there are always one or two individuals who stand out and find a home either on the active roster or the Practice Squad.

Last year wide receiver Seth Roberts and defensive tackle Leon Orr – both of whom were undrafted free agents – saw time on the active roster, and Roberts was actually the No. 3 receiver throughout the season.

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