Raiders

Antonio Brown torches JuJu Smith-Schuster over late-season fumble

Antonio Brown torches JuJu Smith-Schuster over late-season fumble

Antonio Brown's feud with the Steelers isn't over quite yet.

Brown spent the first part of the offseason forcing his way out of Pittsburgh and has thrown a few social media barbs at his old club since being traded to the Raiders at the start of the new league year.

The All-Pro receiver previously ripped former coach Mike Tomlin for his remarks at the NFL's owner meetings.

On Sunday, Brown found a new target.

After a Steelers fan tweeted a picture at Brown that stated JuJu Smith-Schuster was named Steelers Player of the Year for last season, Brown started seeing red and dragged his former teammate in a reply to the fan's tweet. 

Ouch.

The fumble Brown is referring to is Smith-Schuster's costly gaffe at the end of the Steelers' Week 16 loss to the New Orleans Saints. The loss bumped the Steelers out of the driver's seat in the AFC North and forced them to rely on a Baltimore Ravens loss in Week 17 in order to make the playoffs. The Ravens beat the Cleveland Browns and the Steelers' season ended much sooner than they hoped. 

Smith-Schuster fired back by repeating an early tweet Brown had sent about keeping his emotions in check.

Then the USC product addressed Brown directly.

[RELATED: Derek Carr raves about Antonio Brown, other new acquisitions]

Unfortunately, the Raiders and Steelers aren't scheduled to meet in the 2019 regular season. But if the Raiders can improve in Year 2 of Jon Gruden's second run as head coach, a potential playoff matchup could be in the cards. 

Wouldn't that be juicy?

New Raiders receiver Trevor Davis working hard to be ready vs. Vikings

New Raiders receiver Trevor Davis working hard to be ready vs. Vikings

ALAMEDA – Trevor Davis went to Cal and is from Martinez, but hasn’t spent time at home since the Raiders traded for him Wednesday afternoon.

He went straight from Green Bay to the Silver and Black’s training complex, immediately immersing himself in the Raiders' schemes.

He doesn’t have much time, after all, to get ready for Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings. That’s why this trade isn’t a homecoming quite yet.

“I’m locked in at the hotel, in my playbook the whole time,” Davis said. “Going back and forth [to Martinez] is too far for me.”

The Raiders need Davis to get adjusted quickly, with return man/reserve receiver Dwayne Harris likely out a stretch with an ankle injury. He could take on Harris’ role on the team right away.

Harris is a return man first. While getting up to speed offensively by Sunday may be tough, it’s realistic to think Davis could return right away.

“It’s much more simplistic when comparing special teams to offense, so it’s easier to plug yourself into that,” Davis said. “That’s why I might be more ready to hop in there on special teams. Hopefully I’m involved in both soon, but I’m preparing to be ready for anything.”

Return help is a given for Davis, but the Raiders need receiving depth pretty badly. Ryan Grant hasn’t produced early on, J.J. Nelson has dealt with an ankle injury and Keelan Doss is a work in progress.

Davis can certainly help stretch the field with pure speed, something sorely needed in the pattern. He’s trying to use each moment to overcome the challenges of integrating to a new team during the season, including enlisting former Packer and current Raiders backup quarterback DeShone Kizer to tutor him in this scheme.

Davis admitted he never saw the move coming, but hopes to make the most of his time back home.

“You have to come in and be ready for anything,” Davis said. “The NFL is like that. Everything can change in a blink of an eye. I was all the way across the country 24 hours ago. Now I’m here, and I need to put my best foot forward and show these coaches what I can do.”

Raiders plan to expand Josh Jacobs' role in passing game moving forward

Raiders plan to expand Josh Jacobs' role in passing game moving forward

ALAMEDA -- Raiders running back Josh Jacobs is off to a strong start. His snap counts suggest he’s the Silver and Black’s clear-cut feature back, taking most of the carries through two games.

He’s worthy of them, having churned out 184 yards and two touchdowns on 35 carries. A total of 11 carries have resulted in first downs, per analytics site Pro Football Focus, with four rushes of 10-plus yards. That includes a 51-yarder through the right side and down the boundary on Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Jacobs has done everything well thus far, though there’s one thing he hasn’t been asked to do much.

Jacobs has only been targeted once in the passing game despite 22 total snaps as a receiver, and he caught it and ran for a 28-yard pickup. The Alabama product simply hasn't been out on obvious passing downs, either.

Secondary backs Jalen Richard and DeAndre Washington have only been targeted five times for 28 yards on four receptions.

Jacobs has played 68 snaps from the backfield while Washington and Richard have 43 combined, with a significant portion of those snaps given while Jacobs was getting an IV versus Kansas City.

Jacobs' light receiving load has raised some eyebrows, considering his prowess catching passes out of the backfield.

[RELATED: Raiders' Jacobs reveals he's lost 10 pounds due to illness]

There’s some thought that the team might be saving that option for an important moment down the line. The Raiders, however, clearly want to unleash their first-round draft pick’s full potential.

“It’s still early in the season, early in the process,” offensive coordinator Greg Olson said. “We’re happy with Josh Jacobs and the way he’s running the football. When we have put the ball in his hands, he has produced. We’ll look to expand his role as well.”