Raiders snap count: Carrie, Allen help ailing secondary perform well

Raiders snap count: Carrie, Allen help ailing secondary perform well

OAKLAND – The Raiders weren't at full strength heading into Sunday’s home game against Buffalo, and lost a key member during that contest.

Backups filled in well for missing pieces, and were key in the Raiders’ 38-24 victory at Oakland Coliseum.

TJ Carrie took over as slot corner after DJ Hayden was placed on injured reserve last week, and was a steady presence on the interior in 40 defensive snaps. He allowed just two receptions for 28 yards on seven targets, with just six total yards coming after the catch. The Raiders needed sure tackling in that spot and got it from Carrie, who hasn’t played much this year despite significant experience in the slot.

The Raiders also got a key sack from James Cowser, playing defense only with Shilique Calhoun out with a knee injury.

Nate Allen had to step in for strong safety Karl Joseph 20 snaps into Sunday’s game, when the first-round rookie was lost with a foot/toe injury. The veteran Allen played 40 snaps, and finishing with three tackles, a pass defensed and an interception made easy on a ball tipped skyward by Khalil Mack. Allen’s veteran presence allow the Raiders to keep charging and flashed the depth required to survive injuries to key starters.

Dan Williams, Denico Autry played significant snaps at defensive tackle, a position group weakened by ankle injuries to Darius Latham and Stacy McGee.

Let’s take a look at the entire Raiders snap count:

71 – OL Donald Penn, OL Austin Howard, OL Donald Penn, OL Gabe Jackson, QB Derek Carr, OL Rodney Hudson
63 – WR Amari Cooper
57 – WR Michael Crabtree
55 – WR Seth Roberts
50 – RB Latavius Murray
45 – TE Clive Walford
21 – OL Vadal Alexander
20 – TE Mychal Rivera
17 – RB Jalen Richard
12 – WR Andre Holmes
10 – FB Jamize Olawale
2 – RB Taiwan Jones, OL Menelik Watson
1 – WR Johnny Holton

72 – LB Malcolm Smith, S Reggie Nelson
70 – CB Sean Smith, CB David Amerson
69 – LB Perry Riley
68 – LB Bruce Irvin, DE Khalil Mack
63 – DT Denico Autry
62 – DE Jihad Ward
41 – CB TJ Carrie
40 – S Nate Allen
33 – DT Dan Williams
20 – S Karl Joseph, NT Justin Ellis
11 – DE Brenden Jackson
8 – DE James Cowser
5 – LB Cory James

27 – Daren Bates
25 – TJ Carrie, Nate Allen
23 – Taiwan Jones, Andre Holmes, Brynden Trawick
22 – Keith McGill
21 – Jamize Olawale
19 – James Cowser
17 -- Tyrell Adams
13 – Sebatisan Janikowski
12 – Jon Condo, Marquette King
11 – Cory James, Jon Feliciano
10 – Jalen Richard, Branden Jackson
9 – Johnny Holton , Dexter McDonald
6 – Kelechi Osemele, Austin Howard, Donald Penn, Gabe Jackson, Clive Walford, Menelik Watson
4 – Bruce Irvin, Khalil Mack, Denico Autry, TJ Carrie, Dan Williams, Justin Ellis

NOTE: Snap counts taken from official NFL game book

Raiders to sign former 49ers defensive lineman


Raiders to sign former 49ers defensive lineman

Raiders head coach Jon Gruden wanted veterans to help turn his defense around. He added a linebacker and defensive backs aplenty. Then, on Friday night, he gave the front some help.

Former 49ers defensive lineman Tank Carradine will sign with the Raiders, the 28-year old announced on his Instagram page. 

The Sacramento Bee first reported the news. 

He visited the Raiders on Thursday and was in Seattle earlier Friday, but will sign with the Silver and Black.

Carradine could help their transition to a more traditional 4-3 alignment, able to play end in the base defense. He has proven himself as a solid run defender, but believes he can be an effective pass rusher if given the opportunity.

Carradine didn’t get many pass-rushing chances with the 49ers, who generally removed him on passing downs. He has 5.5 sacks in four professional seasons. He played 37.9 percent of 49ers defensive snaps during eight games with the 49ers last season. He missed the same amount on short-term injured reserve with an ankle injury.

At 6-foot-4, 270 pounds, he has the size to be a 4-3 base end. He’ll likely have to battle Mario Edwards Jr. for snaps opposite Khalil Mack, though Bruce Irvin will take that spot in sub packages.

Carradine will be the 10th free-agent signing expected to make the roster, which means the roster turnover this summer should be significant. 

Here was his Instagram post from Friday night: 

Proud to become an Oakland Raider! Let's go #raiders#nation

A post shared by Cornellius Smith (@tank.carradine) on

Adding Rashaan Melvin the key move to Raiders' revamped secondary


Adding Rashaan Melvin the key move to Raiders' revamped secondary

The Raiders started this offseason looking to revamp their secondary around their last two first-round picks. Gareon Conley would start at one cornerback spot. Karl Joseph was penned at strong safety.

Every other job, however, was wide open and likely filled from the outside.

Safety Marcus Gilchrist came aboard Thursday, but one premium spot remained open opposite Conley. Veteran cornerback Rashaan Melvin took it Friday afternoon, agreeing on terms of a one-year $6.5 million contract.

NFL Network broke the news of a bargain compared to other cornerback free-agent deals. They aren’t attached to him long term, and Melvin can sign a bigger deal if he plays well in 2018.

The Raiders declared interest in the former Indianapolis cornerback early this week and worked toward an agreement sealed during a Friday morning visit at the team’s Alameda practice facility.

The 28-year old’s fresh off a career year, allowing just 29 receptions for 328 yards and two touchdowns on 55 targets in 2017. He had three interceptions and 13 passes defensed. Quarterbacks had a paltry 60.3 passer rating against him.

Melvin stands 6-foot-2, 196 pounds and has the athleticism to excel in Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther’s system.

Melvin bounced around before settling with the Colts, struggling to find footing in Tampa Bay, Baltimore New England and two offseason programs in Miami. He found a home in Indianapolis, and became a regular starter in 2016. His breakout 2017 season was cut short by a hand injury that kept him out the last five games.

Melvin projects to start right away. The Raiders will be thrilled if he stays healthy and retains recent form. Melvin has solid ball skills, regularly forces incompletions and thrived in tough assignments that came with being the Colts’ top cornerback.

Gilchrist’s addition, Melvin’s deal and the Friday addition of Shareece Wright fills a cupboard in the defensive backfield laid bare by design.

The Raiders cut David Amerson and now-jailed Sean Smith this offseason. TJ Carrie took a big deal in Cleveland. Reggie Nelson’s allowed to walk as a free agent.

The Raiders added three free agents to the group thus far, and could well draft another defensive back next month.

They’ll have safety Obi Melifonwu in reserve – he’ll have to earn a role after missing most of 2017 with injury – and cornerbacks Antonio Hamilton and Dexter McDonald vying for spots.

Melvin will be plenty motivated to have a big year and cash in at age 29, for what might be his last shot at a big payday.