Raiders

Trade rumors swirl, Raiders stand pat Thursday

457570.jpg

Trade rumors swirl, Raiders stand pat Thursday

April 28, 2011RAIDERS PAGE RAIDERS VIDEONFL DRAFT-TRACKER: RAIDERS
NFL PAGEPaul Gutierrez
CSNCalifornia.com

ALAMEDA - The morning began with rumors of the Raiders trading up into the first round to draft UNR's Colin Kaepernick as their quarterback of the future.The afternoon started with stories of the Raiders instead trading up into the first round to select Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith to replace Nnamdi Asomugha.Instead, Oakland stood pat.Without a first-round draft pick for the first time since 1989 - Oakland traded this year's first-rounder to New England for defensive lineman Richard Seymour on the eve of the 2009 season - the Raiders are scheduled to pick 16th on Friday, No. 48 overall. They should go on the clock at about 5 p.m. PT.That's not to say the Raiders did not entertain thoughts, or offers, of moving up."There was so much phone-calling going on in that room like you wouldn't believe," said first-year coach Hue Jackson. "There were a lot of opportunities but nothing that really fit for us, for exactly what we wanted to accomplish. Obviously, the player has to be there when you want to trade with somebody.
RELATED: NFL Draft Round 1 recap
"I think a lot of people wanted to get out of the first round. It's a different type of draft, obviously, because of what's been going on (with the work stoppage), so I think a lot of teams wanted to make sure that (the) value of a player was very important."The Raiders, coming off an 8-8 season, their best finish since the 2002 Super Bowl campaign, are in a situation where they can draft for need, rather than simply take the best player available.As such, the Raiders have immediate needs at offensive line and in the secondary. And they are still rumored to be interested in Kaepernick. Smith, meanwhile, was selected No. 26 overall by Baltimore.The player many draft observers have long seen the Raiders taking with their first pick is Penn State offensive lineman Stefen Wisniewski, nephew of former Raiders offensive guard standout and new Raiders offensive line assistant Steve Wisniewski.
GUTIERREZ: Five players the Raiders might be targeting
Coincidentally, the elder Wisniewski was drafted No. 29 overall, the first pick of the second round, by Dallas in 1989. Yes, the last time Oakland did not have a first-rounder before the Raiders immediately acquired his rights.Jackson said he was confident the player, or players, the Raiders have on their radar would be available when they pick."There's still a lot of good players on that board, a lot of guys that we evaluated and are sitting there for us," he said. "This is a process. It can change. You can wake up in the morning and after our first pick, the whole board can go upside down or it can stay consistent and just keep on flowing."Tomorrow, I have a very good idea of how this is going to unfoldhopefully, there'll be five or six guys hat are there, we'll wrassle with them and figure out who the best guy is to wear Silver and Black."

With Bowman heading to Oakland, everyone ends up happy, unless...

With Bowman heading to Oakland, everyone ends up happy, unless...

NaVorro Bowman’s employment odyssey lasted three days, and he didn’t have to get his mailing address changed.

The one-year, $3 million deal he reportedly signed with Oakland Monday came after a fairly quiet weekend for all parties. It was an easy choice for him, since there is minimal disruption, and an easy choice for Oakland, which needs all the defensive expertise it can get and has players that Bowman’s diminishing speed cannot expose.

In other words, everyone ends up happy . . . unless Bowman suddenly improves to the point where John Lynch has some ‘splainin’ to do.

The Raiders and 49ers have often shared players, thus belying their often overblown rivalry. The convenience was too . . . well, convenient, and will not be in evidence once Las Vegas becomes an NFL city.

And lord known the Raiders need some new voices in a room that has seemingly gone stale as expectations start to brown into disappointment. Bowman brings an effervescence borne of deep playoff runs, without being too loud a voice in a room that needs to develop more permanent leadership.

As to how much any of this translates into improved defensive play, or just a better vibe coming from Oaktown, well, put it this way.

If Bowman can stanch that level of bleeding, he shouldn’t be playing, he should be an EMT.

But at least he won’t end his career with a sour meeting with the people who run his original team, and that must count for something.

Maybe.

Ex-49ers LB NaVorro Bowman signs deal with Raiders

Ex-49ers LB NaVorro Bowman signs deal with Raiders

ALAMEDA – Former 49ers linebacker NaVorro Bowman visited with the Raiders on Monday, with other team meetings left on the schedule.

He cancelled them all.

The former All-Pro inside linebacker signed with the Raiders, Jack Del Rio announced Monday during his press conference. According to multiple reports, the deal is a one-year, $3 million contract. The Dallas Cowboys website first reported the agreement. He had a meeting with the Cowboys set for Tuesday.

Bowman fills a huge need in the Raiders defense. They need experience and depth on the inside. Bowman certainly provides that. Recent play suggests he isn’t the top-flight player of recent years, seeming slowed by past injuries to his knee and Achilles’ tendon.

He hasn’t forgotten how to tackle or play the run or make pre-snap reads. The Raiders need help in all those areas. They have been playing with rookie Marquel Lee and second-year pro Cory James in the base defense. Both guys are dealing with injuries, making this move even more valuable.

The Raiders are operating on a short week, but Bowman’s healthy and obviously in great shape, making it possible Bowman could play the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday night.

"Not out of the question," Del Rio said when asked if Bowman could play Thursday night.

That's a quick turnaround for someone entering a new scheme with brand new terminology, but he could fit in certain packages right away and help against the run. 

The Raiders also need help on passing downs, though it’s uncertain how much Bowman can help there. James and undrafted rookie Nicholas Morrow have manned the sub package on the inside. Another undrafted rookie, Xavier Woodson-Luster, filled in for James during Sunday’s loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.

“He has played a lot of good ball over the years and we’re excited to have him," Del Rio said. "We’re a little green at the linebacker position, so to add somebody with the experience that he has, we think it’s a nice addition for us. We’ll get him up to speed and see how quickly we can get him there and on the field.”

Bowman’s experience and the Raiders’ other options may lead him to be a three-down linebacker on this team. Morrow could retain that post after a solid start to his career. Time will tell on that front.

According to Pro Football Focus, Bowman has allowed 11 receptions for 113 yards and a touchdown on 13 targets this season. Bowman lost coverage snaps to other 49ers in Week 5 and was set to lose more time to rookie Reuben Foster, a disappointment that expedited his release from the 49ers.

Bowman is a four-time All-Pro and three-time Pro Bowler, and a winner of the 2013 Dick Butkus Award.

The Raiders should get on-field leadership on the interior and a motivated player determined to prove he remains an impact player despite being cut by a 49ers team he served since 2010.

The Raiders are mired in a four-game losing streak and are looking for a boost on both sides of the ball. Bowman should help a defense that hasn’t been half bad recently, but has lacked a presence at inside linebacker.

Del Rio hasn't seen Bowman much this season, but he watched some 49ers game tape this morning and discussed with Bowman at the team's Alameda training complex. Del Rio came away with a solid impression of his new veteran linebacker, who will front a young group right away. 

"He’s been a tough player," Del Rio said. "He has been a part of a really good defense for his entire career. I had a chance to talk a little bit today and talk about the veteran leadership that would be nice to have."