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)

LinebackerNeiron Ball2015LinebackerCory James2016
GuardVadal Alexander2016KickerSebastian Janikowski2000
Defensive endShilique Calhoun2016Running backTaiwan Jones2011
QuaterbackDerek Carr2014SafetyKarl Joseph2016
CornerbackTJ Carrie2014Defensive endKhalil Mack2014
QuarterbackConnor Cook2016CornerbackDexter McDonald2015
Wide receiverAmari Cooper2015Defensive tackleStacy McGee2013
Defensive endMario Edwards Jr.2015Running backLatavius Murray2013
Defensive tackleJustin Ellis2014Tight endDerek Carr2013
Offensive linemanJon Feliciano2015Tight endClive Walford2015
CornerbackDJ Hayden2013Defensive endJihad Ward2016
LinebackerBen Heeney2015Running backDeAndré Washington2016
GuardGabe Jackson2014TackleMenelik Watson2013
SafetyKeith McGill2014

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)

SafetyNate Allen2016SafetyReggie Nelson2016
Long snapperJon Condo2006FullbackJamize Olawale2012
Wide receiverDerek Carr2015Offensive linemanKelechi Osemele2016
Long snapperAndrew East2016TackleDonald Penn2014
Free safetyChris Hackett2015Tight endLee Smith2015
Running backRoy Helu, Jr.2015LinebackerMalcolm Smith2015
TackleAustin Howard2014CornerbackSean Smith2016
CenterRodney Hudson2015KickerGiorgio Tavecchio2015
Outside linebackerBruce Irvin2016CornerbackNeiko Thorpe2014
LinebackerJohn Lotulelei2015LinebackerKorey Toomer2015
Offensive linemanMatt McCants2013SafetyBrynden Trawick2016
Defensive backDewey McDonald2015Tight endColton Underwood2015
Defensive endDamontre Moore2016Defensive tackleDan Williams2015
FullbackMarcel Reece2008

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)

CornerbackDavid Amerson2015
Wide receiverAndre Holmes2013

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 linemanDenico Autry2014Defensive linemanBranden Jackson2016
LinebackerDaren Bates2016PunterMarquette King2012
GuardMitch Bell2015GuardDenver Kirkland2016
Running backGeorge Atkinson III2016Defensive tackleDarius Latham2016
Wide receiverK.J. Brent2016Wide receiverMax McCaffrey2016
CenterRoss Burbank2016QuarterbackMatt McGloin2013
Linebacker/defensive endJames Cowser2016Wide receiverJaydon Mickens2016
CornerbackKenneth Durden2016Tight endRyan O'Malley2016
Defensive backChris Edwards2016GuardOni Omoile2016
Defensive backSaQwan Edwards2016Defensive tackleLeon Orr2015
LinebackerJimmy Hall2015Running backJalen Richard2016
CornerbackAntonio Hamilton2016Wide receiverSeth Roberts2014
Wide receiverJoe Hansley2016Defensive endGreg Townsend2016
Tight endGabe Holmes2015GuardTerran Vaughn2016
Wide receiverJohnny Holton2016Offensive linemanTorian White2016
Defensive linemanDrew Iddings2016LinebackerKyrie Wilson2016
Wide ReceiverMarvin Hall2016Wide ReceiverNathan Palmer2016

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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