With new contract, Penn can 'live out a childhood dream,' retire a Raider


With new contract, Penn can 'live out a childhood dream,' retire a Raider

ALAMEDA – Donald Penn planned to seriously consider retirement after the 2017 season. That was back in early 2016, right after the left tackle signed a second two-year deal with the Raiders.

His body treated him right, but he wanted quality time with his family. He didn’t want one year too many to hinder that, especially laying it all on the line for a struggling team.

Penn played but one playoff game at that point, experiencing three winning seasons. At that point, it had been a while. Then the Raiders went 12-4 last season, and Penn had career year.

His mindset changed. The itch came back. He wasn’t ready for a swan song. Not quite yet.

Penn wasn’t done playing. He was done being a free agent. He wanted a raise to represent his play compared to other offensive tackles. He wanted an outline toward an actual end game, and he wanted to finish with the NFL team he first loved spending childhood Sundays with family at L.A. Memorial Coliseum.

A two-year, $20.6 million contract extension signed Friday got that done. It doesn’t include new money this season, the Las Vegas Review Journal reports, but provides some future guarantees and should compensate him well until the deal expires after 2019.

“There was a lot of doubt (about getting a new deal),” Penn said. “I didn’t want to hit free agency again. I told them, ‘You know how much I love you guys. Show me how much you guys love me back, and let’s get this done so I can retire a Raider.’

“I’m blessed that (owner Mark Davis) and the Raiders have that love, and I’m going to be able to live out my childhood dream.”

That will be finishing up in silver and black hopefully, Penn says, with a championship to his credit.

His quest for a new deal prompted a contract holdout. His love for teammates and a quest for glory brought him back Aug. 23 without a new deal in place.

“My mission is to help return us to greatness,” Penn said. “We’ve taken steps forward, but that mission isn’t complete. We have a good thing here and I didn’t want to leave. That’s a reason why I came in early on the holdout. If this contract didn’t happen…a Super Bowl championship is priceless. That’s what I was looking at when I came in early, sucked up my pride and went back to the mission. I’m not going to miss a chance to get to the Super Bowl. They kept their word and did everything possible and we got a deal done.”

Raiders remain on a receiver hunt as their top target signs elsewhere


Raiders remain on a receiver hunt as their top target signs elsewhere

The Raiders missed out on signing Ryan Grant. The former Washington receiver visited the team’s Alameda training complex, but left without a contract and ultimately chose to sign a one-year, $5 million deal with Indianapolis.

They lost that one, but are undeterred in their quest to upgrade the receiver corps.

They already signed Jordy Nelson and let Michael Crabtree walk, hoping for steady production and quality locker room leadership in the exchange.

Cordarrelle Patterson was traded to New England on Sunday, creating a spot in the position group.

The Raiders tried to fill it with Grant. No go, no matter.

They hosted veteran Eric Decker on Tuesday, according to multiple reports. They also declared interest in Allen Hurns, a player the Jaguars released Tuesday morning.

Hurns listed the Raiders among interested teams – he said there were 10 in total – in an interview with KFNZ radio in Charlotte, N.C.

Hurns has a 1,000-yard season to his credit – his biggest year came with now-Raiders offensive coordinator Greg Olson as Jacksonville's O.C. -- and two relative down years since. Injuries have also played a part in that.

Decker had a stellar four-year run with Denver and the New York Jets, but was less effective during two seasons in Tennessee. The 31-year old has experience in the slot, and could be a productive No. 3 option in Jon Gruden’s offense.

Gruden doesn't mind working with veteran receivers, something clear from his past and willingness to add Nelson as a major contributor. 

Even if the Raiders don't land a veteran receiver, they could also look for a receiver in the NFL draft.

Amari Cooper will remain the No. 1 option. Seth Roberts has $4.45 million guaranteed in 2018. Johnny Holton, Isaac Whitney and Keon Hatcher are also on the roster.

Report: Ndamukong Suh set to meet with Raiders


Report: Ndamukong Suh set to meet with Raiders

After visiting the Titans, Saints and Rams, free agent defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh will make a stop in the East Bay.

Recently released by the Dolphins, Suh will visit with the Raiders on Wednesday, according to ESPN.

The former No. 2 overall pick made it through just three seasons of a six-year, $114 million deal he signed with Miami prior to the 2015 season.

The 31-year-old Portland, Oregon native last made the Pro Bowl in 2016 and was last earned First-Team All Pro honors in 2014.

In 16 games with the Dolphins last season, Suh recorded 4.5 sacks and 48 combined tackles.