Rick Slate, who owns 31 years of strength and conditioning experience, enters his second season with the Silver and Black as a strength and conditioning assistant. He joined the Raiders after spending 25 seasons in Major League Baseball with the Florida Marlins, New York Mets and Atlanta Braves.
During his first season with the Raiders, Slate helped implement the team’s strength and conditioning program while working with multiple position groups throughout the roster. Slate worked with TE Jared Cook as he earned his first Pro Bowl selection in 2018. Cook set career highs in receptions (68), receiving yards (896) and touchdowns (six) and tallied four 100-yard contests on the season, tied for third-most among all tight ends in the NFL, en route to the most receiving yards by a Raiders tight end in a single season since 1986. Slate also helped train C Rodney Hudson and G/T Kelechi Osemele in 2018, who were named Pro Bowl alternates.
Under Slate’s training, QB Derek Carr started in all 16 contests for the third time in his career and finished the season with 4,049 yards on 381-of-553 passing (68.9 percent), 19 touchdowns against 10 interceptions for a passer rating of 93.9. In his fifth season in the league, Carr’s completions, completion percentage, yards and yards per attempt (7.3 avg.) all marked new career highs.
Prior to entering the NFL, Slate was with the Braves organization from 2011-17 serving as the team’s director of strength and conditioning. Slate initially joined Atlanta in 2011 and served as the Braves’ minor league strength and conditioning coordinator before being promoted in 2012.
In Atlanta, Slate oversaw all aspects of the Braves’ strength and conditioning program throughout all levels of the organization. Under his program, the Braves reached the postseason in back-to-back seasons from 2012-13 and saw the team capture the NL East title in 2013.
From 2003-10, Slate was with the Mets for eight seasons as New York’s strength and conditioning coordinator. Slate helped the club win the NL East title in 2006, their first division crown since 1988, and went on to reach the League Championship Series.
Slate began his professional career with the Marlins in 1992, one year prior to their inaugural season, as the team’s minor league strength and conditioning coordinator. He was promoted in 1993 and served as Florida’s strength and conditioning coordinator for nine years. During his tenure with the Marlins, Slate helped them win the 1997 World Series, becoming the first wild card team ever to win the World Series.
Before entering professional baseball, Slate spent six years at Florida State as an assistant strength and conditioning coach from 1987-92. During his time at Florida State, he helped the football program record six consecutive seasons with 10 or more wins, while earning six bowl wins and one ACC championship. He also helped his collegiate teams make it to the Sweet 16 in basketball and the College World Series in baseball while at Florida State.
PERSONAL: Native of St. Augustine, Fla. …Attended Florida State earning a bachelor’s degree in sports management and a master’s certificate in athletic administration…Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach and Registered Strength and Conditioning Specialist through the National Strength and Conditioning Association…Holds numerous other certifications including CrossFit Level 1, SFG Kettlebell Instructor Level 1 and 2, USAW Club Coach Level 1, USTF Level 1, FMS Level 1 and CPR…Has two daughters, Layla and Jada.