Raiders

Raiders sign veteran lineman Richie Incognito to one-year contract

Raiders sign veteran lineman Richie Incognito to one-year contract

Head coach Jon Gruden recently said that the Raiders were still on a left guard hunt. Denzelle Good was penciled into the starting lineup, but now he’ll face stiff competition from Richie Incognito.

The four-time Pro Bowl interior lineman's agent confirmed the two sides agreed on terms of a one-year contract Tuesday morning, a few weeks after working out for the Raiders at their Alameda training complex. The Raiders later confirmed the signing.

Financial terms of the contract are not known at this time. NFL Media's Ian Rapoport was first to report the news.

There was mutual interest in getting a deal done a few weeks ago, sources said, but the Raiders wanted to check with the NFL about a possible suspension for a disorderly conduct conviction stemming from an Aug. 2018 incident at an Arizona funeral home shortly after his father's death. The Raiders are obviously satisfied with what they've learned about possible punitive action -- the NFL did not return a message seeking comment earlier this month about this matter -- or protective language in the contract to employ Incognito.  

Incognito has been out of football since he retired following the 2017 season, the last of a solid three-year run in Buffalo. The Bills placed him on the reserve/retired list, but have cut him since. He has been an unrestricted free agent and un-retired hoping for another chance in the NFL.

Incognito has dealt with some well-documented off-field issues, including a scandal in Miami where he was found by the NFL to have harassed Dolphins teammate Jonathan Martin.

He has had two run-ins with the law since leaving NFL football. In addition to the aforementioned Aug. 2018 funeral home incident, he was reportedly taken to a mental health hospital following an May 2018 at a Florida gym. 

Incognito, 35, has played some excellent football in his career, and could help the Raiders fill the only open spot along their offensive line. Currently left tackle Kolton Miller, center Rodney Hudson, right guard Gabe Jackson and right tackle Trent Brown are unquestioned starters.

The Raiders were looking to add an interior lineman in the NFL draft, but didn’t end up selecting one. Incognito and Good will battle for the left guard post throughout the spring and summer.

[RELATED: Raiders sign 'Last Chance U' star]

Good was signed late last season and was effective playing inside as the year wound down. He re-signed with the Raiders this offseason.

Grading the Raiders offense, defense after a Week 11 victory over Bengals

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USA TODAY SPORTS IMAGES

Grading the Raiders offense, defense after a Week 11 victory over Bengals

OAKLAND – The Raiders didn’t bring their best to Oakland Coliseum on Sunday afternoon. They weren’t bad, not by any stretch, but had to battle a bit to beat the winless Cincinnati Bengals.

The 17-10 final score is absolutely all that matters here. The Raiders completed a perfect three-game homestand and have won five of their last seven games to join the AFC’s playoff race.

The Raiders will have to be better down the road, as early as next week against the New York Jets, and they know that.

But they fought hard and got another win at home to keep this good thing going.

There’s plenty of time to look at the big picture. Here’s how the Silver and Black graded out on this particular Sunday in our weekly Raiders report card:

Rushing offense

Josh Jacobs didn’t like his performance despite gaining 112 yards on 21. His 4.9 yards per attempt were above his season average and he ate up ground in chunks, but the rookie rusher was bothered by a red-zone fumble even after the game. He should have been. That’s a no-no. The Raiders didn’t get much from other Raiders runners, with a 3.3-yards per carry average on the whole. That came against the NFL’s worst run defense – the Bengals had given up 173 yards per game entering Sunday – which probably increased frustration that the Raiders didn’t go off.
Grade: C

Passing offense

Derek Carr had a solid statistical day, much like Jacobs. He connected on his first 14 passes and finished with 292 yards and just four incompletions. Darren Waller was heavily involved, with five catches for 78 yards after getting some one-on-one or man coverage. Hunter Renfrow hhad five catches for 66 yards, but a pass intended for him got picked. That was Carr’s first interception since Oct. 20, but still cut deep. The pass protection was lacking at times, which kept the air attack from finding a solid rhythm.
Grade: B-minus

Rushing defense

This is normally a team strength. Not on this day. The Bengals had 173 yards on 22 carries, for a whopping 7.3 yards per carry. Yeah. You read that stat line right. That normally means the Raiders lost a game. Not so here. The Bengals still struggled on third down thanks to a terrible passing game. Joe Mixon gave the Raiders fits in last year’s matchup in Cincinnati and did so close to his Oakley home, totaling 86 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries. This might’ve been the run defense’s worst showing of the season.
Grade: D

Passing defense

Ryan Finley struggled mightily in his second NFL start. The rookie completed just 13-of-31 passes for 115 yards and a Trayvon Mullen interception that sealed a Raiders victory. The Silver and Black sacked him five times, including four from rookie edge rusher Maxx Crosby. One of them was a strip sack recovered by Maurice Hurst, though the Raiders gave the ball right back. Newcomer Dion Jordan got in on the sack-tivity (get it?) in his first game as a Raider. The pass rush is starting to heat up now, with 10 sacks in the past two games. That’s a good sign for the defense as a whole, especially a secondary that piecing a lineup together with Karl Joseph done for the season and Lamarcus Joyner out for the time being.
Grade: A

Special teams

The Raiders punted late in the fourth quarter over kicking a long field goal to pin the Bengals back for a final comeback attempt. Then A.J. Cole sent his punt into the end zone for a touchback. Not ideal, but not the end of the world. His 32.8-yard net punt average wasn’t great, and he put just one of five attempts inside the opposing 20. Daniel Carlson hit his only field-goal attempt, and it was a short one.
Grade: C

Overall

The defense did more than enough to win. The offense feels like it didn’t do enough and still won. That’s the only important thing. Find a way to win a game. The Raiders did that for a third straight time thanks to more good coaching and enough good plays to beat the team on the other sideline. Do that enough and you’re playoff bound.
Grade: A

Why Derek Carr, Josh Jacobs say Raiders offense didn't meet high standard

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AP

Why Derek Carr, Josh Jacobs say Raiders offense didn't meet high standard

ALAMEDA – Raiders running Josh Jacobs had 112 rushing yards on 23 carries on Sunday against Cincinnati, the fourth time the rookie hit triple digits this season.

Jacobs couldn’t have cared less.

Quarterback Derek Carr completed his first 14 passes and hit on 24-of-29 passes for 292 yards and a triple-digit passer rating.

That stat line was met with a shrug.

The Raiders will gladly take a 17-10 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, but they openly acknowledged an underwhelming offensive performance that must be improved against better competition.

“We could have had more,” Carr said. "Honestly, that's how I feel. I left the game and I get our stat book and I looked at it and I was like, 'They look pretty, but I could have played better.' I'm hard on myself. … I think that's the standard that Coach Gruden puts on me.”

Jacobs felt the same way, disappointed to leave plays unmade despite several highlights during the game.

“We left a lot of points out there as an offense,” Jacobs said. “I missed a couple holes. Honestly, It wasn’t a great game for me. I had 100-and-something yards or whatever, but there’s a lot to improve on.”

The Raiders offense had been humming. The unit had scored at least 24 points in six straight games over a 4-2 stretch. The unit was balanced, steady and impactful against some solid teams, creating the expectation that the Raiders should go off against a Bengals team ranked 22nd against the pass and dead last against the run.

That didn’t happen. The Raiders weren’t bad, either. Not by a long shot. They converted half of their third- and fourth-down attempts. They accumulated 386 yards of offense and had nine explosive plays of 20 yards or more.

They misfired a few times, which bothered both Carr and Jacobs after this win. Jacobs fumbled in the red zone – that’s a major no-no – and Carr threw his first interception since Oct. 20 when Bengals safety Jessie Bates III cut off a pass intended for Hunter Renfrow.

“[Josh] never wants to put the ball on the ground,” Carr said. “I threw an interception, he fumbled. If Coach is going to put the ball in our hands every single play, one of us, then we need to be better."

[RELATED: Jacobs hit hard by Tua injury]

This was a day where the Raiders held Cincinnati to 10 points, and just a field goal after the opening drive. After having to win so many high-scoring games, the offense didn’t have to do much in this one. They were productive but not efficient enough scoring, and the Raiders playmakers believe it didn’t do well enough even though the box score looks good.

“I'm never into fantasy stats or my stats or anything like that,” Carr said. “I'm into doing whatever Coach Gruden wants me to do at a high level. I didn't do that well enough today.”