Raiders LT Donald Penn ruled out vs Texans: 'In tears right now'

Raiders LT Donald Penn ruled out vs Texans: 'In tears right now'

HOUSTON – Already battered and bruised, the Raiders just took another Joe Frazier shot to the gut.

Donald Penn was ruled out of Saturday’s playoff game against the host Houston Texans with a knee injury, meaning rookie quarterback Connor Cook will make his first NFL start without a Pro Bowler watching his back.

Penn got hurt in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s loss to Denver, and while he returned for that game’s final snap, he just wasn’t right. He skipped a week’s practice trying to recover in time, but the Raiders deemed him unfit to play in this important game.

Starting right tackle Menelik Watson is expected to shift to the left side, with veteran Austin Howard taking Watson’s place. Both players can produce quality, but the line is significantly weaker without Penn.

He had allowed one sack all season and ranked high among the NFL’s best run blocking tackles.

Penn started 155 consecutive regular-season games, and was excited to play in a playoff atmosphere. Most believed he would try to go, even if it meant playing through extreme pain.

The Raiders will also play without safety Nate Allen, who did not pass the NFL’s concussion protocol this week.

Quarterback Matt McGloin practiced all week and is expected to be Cook’s backup against Houston.

Missing Allen and having McGloin available was expected. Losing Penn is a blow to a team already reeling from Derek Carr’s broken fibula a few weeks back.

Several other Raiders, including safety Karl Joseph, receivers Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree and left guard Kelechi Osemele are questionable but are expected to play.

Here’s a complete injury report for the Raiders and Texans.

Raiders Injury Report
S Nate Allen (concussion), QB Derek Carr (ankle), LT Donald Penn (knee)
OL Kelechi Osemele (ankle), LB Perry Riley Jr. (hamstring), LB Malcolm Smith (hamstring), WR Amari Cooper (shoulder), WR Michael Crabtree (ankle), WR Andre Holmes (shoulder), S Karl Joseph, QB Matt McGloin (shoulder)

Texans Injury Report

QB Tom Savage (concussion), OLB John Simon (chest)

Report: Ndamukong Suh calls off meeting with Raiders


Report: Ndamukong Suh calls off meeting with Raiders

Ndamukong Suh won’t meet with the Raiders, after all. The star defensive tackle cut Alameda out of his free-agent tour, according to NFL Network, choosing instead to head home after stops in New Orleans, Tennessee and the L.A. Rams.

NFLN reports that Suh had dinner with Rams coach Sean McVay on Tuesday night, and was due in Oakland the following day. The Rams made a solid impression

Suh is reportedly mulling options from all three aforementioned playoff teams, all of which have more working salary-cap space and other stalwarts along the defensive line.

That’s surely a disappointment for the Raiders, who have had interest in Suh dating back to his last free-agent experience in 2015. The Silver and Black couldn’t afford him then. It seems unlikely they can afford him now, with precious little salary-cap space remaining after being active in free agency’s second wave.

The Raiders also hope to lock Khalil Mack up long-term with a massive extension this offseason.

It’s uncertain at this stage whether player or team cancelled the meeting, or exactly why it was called off. The Raiders could still sign a veteran defensive tackle, and/or acquire one early in the NFL Draft.

Raiders restructure Marshawn Lynch's contract


Raiders restructure Marshawn Lynch's contract

Marshawn Lynch restructured his contract this week, virtually locking him in for the 2018 Raiders season.

The veteran exchanged some base salary for guaranteed funds and an increased incentive package, according to contract details obtained Wednesday by the Las Vegas Review Journal.

His base salary drops from $4 million to $2.5 million, but becomes guaranteed. None of the funds Lynch had coming in his previous deal were guaranteed. He has a $1 million roster bonus coming on Saturday, just six days after receiving a $1 million roster bonus as required in his old contract.

That essentially guarantees him $4.5 million, as sure a sign as any he’ll be the Raiders feature back. Lynch will lead his position group, with support from veteran addition Doug Martin. DeAndre Washington and Jalen Richard are also on the roster, though it’s uncertain if both guys will remain there this fall.

Lynch can also earn $3.75 million in incentives, a significant increase from the $2 million available in the previous deal.

The Raiders saved $500,000 in salary cap space with the new deal.