Raiders snap count: Bowman a three-down linebacker vs Bills


Raiders snap count: Bowman a three-down linebacker vs Bills

SARASOTA, Fla. – The Raiders have a new field general running their defense. NaVorro Bowman played all 69 defensive snaps in a 34-14 loss to the Buffalo Bills, acting as the three-down linebacker his former team didn’t prefer.

Bowman’s snaps were expected to decrease with the 49ers, a major reason why they released him roughly two weeks ago. The Raiders had a glaring need on the inside, especially for someone with Bowman’s experience, on-field leadership and tackling ability.

He won’t be a part-time player here. The Raiders are banged up at linebacker, Bowman’s the position group’s permanent fixture.

Weakside linebacker Cory James was a three-down player – he missed most of the last two games with a knee injury – but left in certain packages.

Nicholas Morrow, previously involved in sub packages, only played special teams on Sunday.

Time will tell if this change is permanent or injury related, but Bowman has quickly taken command of this defense. He led the team with 11 tackles, including one for a loss. He allowed three receptions for 19 yards – just two after the catch – on as many targets. Pass coverage was a perceived weakness in Bowman's game, but the Raiders aren't putting him in bad spots. They're playing to strengths whenever possible while keeping him on the field. 

“We haven’t really asked him to go eliminate people in terms of if they’re trying to play a lot of man and isolate him on backs or things like that or tight ends," Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio said. "We’re not asking him to do a lot of that. From what I’ve seen, he’s a good football player. He’s come in, two weeks in a row he’s led our team in tackles. He’s taking charge. He’s been a very positive addition to our football team. His experience, his toughness, his love for the game; it’s a positive for us.”

Quarterback – Derek Carr 65
Running back – DeAndre Washington 32, Jalen Richard 26, Jamize Olawale 5
Wide receiver – Amari Cooper 63, Cordarelle Patterson 57, Michael Crabtree 55, Johnny Holton 13
Tight end – Jared Cook 46, Lee Smith 19, Clive Walford 6
Offensive line –Kelechi Osemele 65, Rodney Hudson 65, Donald Penn 65, Marshall Newhouse 65, Gabe Jackson 65, Vadal Alexander 2, Jon Feliciano 1

Defensive line – Khalil Mack 58, Justin Ellis 47, Mario Edwards 43, Denico Autry 37, Eddie Vanderdoes 37, Treyvon Hester 30, Mario Edwards 28, James Cowser 7
Linebacker – NaVorro Bowman 69, Bruce Irvin 61, Cory James 49
Cornerback – TJ Carrie 68, Dexter McDonald 67, Sean Smith 29, Shilique Calhoun 11, Xavier Woodson-Luster 1
Safety – Reggie Nelson 69, Shalom Luani 68, Keith McGill 8

Keith McGill 25, James Cowser 25, Xavier Woodson-Luster 19, Erik Harris 19, Nicholas Morrow 15, Shalom Luani 16, Jalen Richard 12, Johnny Holton 12, Cordarrelle Patterson 11, DeAndre Washington 9, Lee Smith 9, Jon Feliciano 9, Elijah Hood 8, Demetrius McCray 8 Clive Walford 7, Jamize Olawale 7, TJ Carrie 6, Mario Edwards 6, Denico Autry 6, Eddie Vanderdoes 6, Treyvon Hester 6, Jon Condo 6, Marquette King 6, Giorgio Tavecchio 5, Gabe Jackson 2, Marshall Newhouse 2, Kelechi Osemele 2, Vadal Alexander 2, Justin Ellis 2

QB EJ Manuel, WR Seth Roberts

CB Gareon Conley, QB Connor Cook, OT Jylan Ware, LB Marquel Lee, DL Jihad Ward, CB David Amerson, OT David Sharpe

Raiders sign linebacker with Paul Guenther connection


Raiders sign linebacker with Paul Guenther connection

The Raiders entered this free agency period needing defensive help throughout the depth chart. They signed presumptive starters earlier in this veteran acquisition process, but didn’t stop there.

The Silver and Black have added depth this week especially, signing a key cog in linebacker Emmanuel Lamur on Wednesday afternoon.

Lamur spent the last two years in Minnesota and the previous four in Cincinnati with new Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther. Guenther was his position coach from 2012-13 and his DC from 2014-15. He also knows Raiders linebackers coach David Lippincott from the Bengals days

Lamur has primarily been a reserve, but Guenther gave him an opportunity to start in 2014. He had 59 tackles and two interceptions in 13 starts that year as a strongside linebacker.

The Raiders have options at that spot, but no firm starter at this stage if Bruce Irvin plays defensive end full time.

Lamur hasn’t played much defense the last two years, but is known as a quality special teams contributor. The Raiders have signed several of those players in an attempt to improve coverage and returns.

All told, the Raiders have signed 14 unrestricted free agents with a shot to make the 53-man roster since last week began. The roster will turnover significantly in Jon Gruden’s return to the Raiders, and it’s possible he signs more players in coming days.

The Raiders are still looking for upgrades at receiver, and might add another bargain defensive lineman.

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.