Raiders edge rusher Khalil Mack will not play in this year’s Pro Bowl.
The All-Pro backed out due to injury, paving the way for New York Jets defensive lineman Leonard Williams to join the NFL’s annual all-star game.
The switch was announced Thursday morning on the Jets official website.
Mack was one of seven Raiders originally named to the Pro Bowl. That was a game that large group didn’t want to play, hoping to opt out after qualifying for the Super Bowl.
That didn’t happen. The Raiders season ended with quarterback Derek Carr’s Week 16 injury and a loss to Houston in the postseason’s opening round.
Mack and Carr won’t play in the Pro Bowl. Kelechi Osemele, Rodney Hudson, Donald Penn, Amari Cooper and Reggie Nelson are in the mix at this time.
Reggie Nelson has been on a reunion tour since signing with the Raiders. He first worked under Jack Del Rio, his head coach in Jacksonville and someone who choose to make him 2007’s No. 21 overall draft pick.
That link held for two years. Then Del Rio got run out for Jon Gruden’s favor and Nelson hit the free-agent market. The 34-year old – he’ll be 35 in September – wasn’t expected back after a down year in 2017.
Another blast from the past created a road back to Oakland, where he reportedly signed a one-year deal with the Raiders. NFL Network reported news of Nelson’s act.
Nelson thrived, with 23 interceptions and 62 passes defensed during six seasons in Cincinnati. New Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther was linebackers coach and then Bengals DC (for two years) during Nelson’s time in the Queen City.
Nelson had five picks in 2016, his first year with Oakland, but seemed to slow down some last season. He had 60 tackles, two forced fumbles and an interception in 2017.
Nelson will help teach a system familiar to him but foreign to most Raiders, but will certainly angle for steady snaps despite increased competition at his spot.
He’ll compete for snaps at safety despite last week’s signing of Marcus Gilchrist, who was thought to take his spot. The Raiders also have Karl Joseph and Obi Melifonwu at that position. Melifonwu must earn a role in this defense. The other three have starter’s experience and will compete for that opportunity. Gilchrist also has experience covering the slot, which could help the secondary if a career cornerback isn't found to fill that role.
SAN FRANCISCO — Former Oakland Raiders player Aldon Smith surrendered to police Friday on charges he violated a domestic violence restraining order.
San Francisco police said the 28-year-old Smith turned himself and was booked on three misdemeanor charges of violating a court order to stay away from a domestic violence victim.
Earlier this month, Smith pleaded not guilty to domestic violence and other charges and a judge issued a protective order prohibiting him from contacting the victim.
Police said Smith violated the restraining order earlier this week.
Smith’s attorney, Joshua Bentley, did not return a voicemail message from The Associated Press seeking comment.
The Raiders released the linebacker days after his arrest on the domestic violence charges.
He had been on the suspended list since late 2015 for violating the NFL’s policy on substance abuse.