Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock have been busy since the start of the NFL league year – like, really busy.
Not only did the pair acquire All-Pro wide receiver Antonio Brown from the Pittsburgh Steelers, they’ve spent much of the past week adding a plethora of players – on both sides of the ball – to the Oakland Raiders roster.
The Silver and Black have been wheeling and dealing since March 13, so for those of you who have missed a move or two, here’s a quick recap of everything that has gone down.
Wide receiver Antonio Brown – Mr. Big Chest. A guy with seven Pro Bowls, and four All-Pro nods under his belt. Brown has gone over the 1,000-yard mark seven times in his career, and might be the only active player with a shot to catch Jerry Rice as the game’s all-time leading receiver.
Tackle Trent Brown – An absolute behemoth of a man who will bookend one side of the Raiders offensive line – which side though remains to be seen. After starting his career in San Francisco, Brown spent 2018 with the New England Patriots.
Defensive tackle Jonathan Hankins – After appearing in every game save one in his first season as a Raider, the powerful defensive tackle will be back in Silver and Black for another season in 2019.
Guard Chaz Green – Green spent the first two seasons of his career with the Dallas Cowboys before finishing up the 2018 campaign on the Raiders roster. A versatile lineman, I’ll be interested to see the type of offseason he has headed into training camp.
Safety Lamarcus Joyner – Joyner is a versatile defensive back who spent the first part of his career with the Rams – both St. Louis and Los Angeles. The former Florida Gator has the ability to play safety as well as nickel cornerback, so the hope is that he’s a valuable contributor in myriad roles to Paul Guenther’s defense.
Defensive end Josh Mauro – The Stanford product finds himself back in the Bay Area after spending 2018 with the New York Giants. Mauro’s arrival in Oakland also serves as a reunion of sorts, as he worked with defensive line coach Brentson Buckner when the pair were both members of the Arizona Cardinals.
Wide Receiver J.J. Nelson – Nelson’s claim to fame is his speed, and for good reason, the dude can straight fly. He ran a 4.28 second 40-yard dash prior to the Draft, but he told me that he could have actually run even faster than that. I like that a lot.
Wide Receiver Tyrell Williams – Plucked from the division rival Los Angeles Chargers, the 27-year-old receiver already has a 1,000-yard season under his belt, and looks to have his best football still ahead of him. He and AB should prove to be quite the one-two punch for the Raiders offense.
Linebacker Jason Cabinda – Cabinda was an exclusive rights free agent headed into the beginning of the league year, but he’ll be back in Silver and Black in 2019. In his first season as a Raider, the former Penn State Nittany Lion appeared in 10 games with three starts.
Wide Receiver Dwayne Harris – The man responsible for arguably the most-exciting play of the Raiders season last year will be back in action once again in 2019. Also, “Gucci” has the best free agent signing photo I’ve ever seen.
Guard/Tackle Kelechi Osemele – In exchange for sending the Pro Bowl lineman to the New York Jets, the Silver and Black acquired the No. 140 overall pick (a fifth rounder) in next month’s NFL Draft.
Exclusive photos of Antonio Brown's first day at Raiders Headquarters in Alameda, Calif.
Quarterback AJ McCarron – The veteran signal-caller appeared in two games last season in relief of Derek Carr, but it now appears as though his football odyssey will continue outside the East Bay.
Wide Receiver Jordy Nelson – Nelson’s lone season in Oakland certainly had some high points – his Week 3 performance in Miami comes to mind – but it looks like his career as a Raider was a short-lived one.
Tackle Donald Penn – After five seasons in Silver and Black, Penn and the Raiders parted ways over the weekend. Penn was the starting left tackle on the Raiders 2016 playoff team, and the veteran tackle will look to continue his career elsewhere.