Daryl Worley

Raiders Tender RB Jalen Richard, CB Daryl Worley

The Raiders placed second-round tenders on both running back Jalen Richard and cornerback Darryl Worley. Both players are now earmarked for one-year, $3.095MM deals with Oakland, unless they are signed to an offer sheet from a club willing to surrender a second-round pick. Meanwhile, Raiders safety Erik Harris received one-year, $2.025MM original round tender as a restricted free agent.

The move to tender Worley at the second-round level is a bit of a head scratcher. In his case, an original round tender would have called for another club to surrender a third-round pick to sign him. That would have been ample protection for a player who graded out as the seventh-worst cornerback in the NFL last year, according to Pro Football Focus, but the Raiders took the extra step of protecting him with the second-round level tender. Ultimately, it will eat up about $1MM extra in cap space, and small missteps like that tend to add up.

The decision to protect Richard, a former UDFA, with the second-round tender makes more sense. Last year, Richard managed 4.7 yards per carry in a limited sample size and he boasts a career 5.3 ypc average. He’ll return to a Raiders team that may or may not feature Doug Martin and Marshawn Lynch in 2019.

West Rumors: Fitz, Raiders, Broncos, Brown

After the Cardinals trudged through their worst season in 18 years, Larry Fitzgerald‘s latest retire-or-not decision now features another new coach and offensive system in the equation — this one with no NFL coaching experience. But the future Hall of Fame receiver has not distanced himself from the process that brought Kliff Kingsbury to Arizona. Fitz has exchanged text messages with his new coach, the 35-year-old wideout told TMZ recently (via the Arizona Republic).

Hell of a coach. … Look at his resume,” Fitzgerald said. “He’s innovative offensively. That’s the wave of the future right now, so I’m excited for the chance to meet him.”

Fitzgerald played out his contract and is a free agent. While it would seemingly be tempting for the 15-year veteran to see if he could land with a team better positioned to compete for a championship, the career-long Cardinal has said multiple times he will only play for the Cards. Fitz continues to deliberate about the possibility of retiring or coming back for a 16th season.

Here is more from the West-division teams that have been working on their offseason strategies.

  • Former Broncos offensive lineman Chris Kuper will return to Denver as the team’s assistant offensive line coach. Kuper spent the previous three seasons coaching under Adam Gase in Miami. He retired following the 2013 season with the Broncos, who deployed him as a starter for most of his career. Kuper will work under Mike Munchak.
  • The 49ers are the Las Vegas frontrunners to land Antonio Brown, and The Athletic (subscription required) agrees with that assessment. San Francisco should be viewed as the clubhouse leaders to acquire the disgruntled Steelers wideout, per The Athletic’s Matt Barrows. Kyle Shanahan balked at paying high prices for this past year’s UFA crop, and Barrows writes the 49ers will not be giving up their No. 2 overall pick for a soon-to-be 31-year-old wideout. However, he cautions a team picking in the late first round may be able to outflank a San Francisco trade offer, regardless of the 49ers’ need at this position.
  • Brentson Buckner‘s position with the Raiders will be defensive line coach, Jon Gruden said Tuesday (via ESPN.com’s Paul Gutierrez). Buckner, who coached the Buccaneers’ defensive linemen last season, will replace Mike Trgovac. The latter, however, will be promoted in some capacity, per Gruden. As for the Raiders’ quarterbacks coach position — vacated by Brian Callahan‘s move to become the Bengals’ OC Tuesday — the team might wait until the Combine to fill that position.
  • Gruden believes Daryl Worley underwent shoulder surgery recently after ending his season with a torn labrum, Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal tweets. Worley, a starter this season prior to landing on IR, is expected to receive an RFA tender from the Raiders.

Minor NFL Transactions: 12/24/18

Here are the NFL’s minor moves on Christmas Eve:

Dallas Cowboys

Oakland Raiders

Tennessee Titans

Raiders Rumors: Trades, Melvin, Lynch

Stability’s been elusive during Jon Gruden‘s first months in Oakland, and Rashaan Melvin found himself as the centerpiece of a recent chapter in a complicated Raiders year. The Raiders limited the free agent addition to just seven snaps Sunday in London, and Melvin expressed his frustration with a reduced role. The Raiders have wanted Melvin to add a new technique to his repertoire, one he wasn’t familiar with during his previous NFL seasons, and internally prefer mid-offseason pickup Daryl Worley to Melvin, Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal notes. After a more diplomatic response Sunday, Melvin tweeted, “I’m done trying to change my style. It’s not me. Back to what I know and what got me here!!” Gruden then used another opportunity to take issue with one of his players through the press.

Melvin is on his seventh team. Maybe he is confused about what technique he is using,” Gruden said Tuesday, via Vic Vafur of The Athletic (on Twitter). “He is frustrated. I can’t blame him. … He is a good kid.”

Melvin signed a one-year, $5.5MM contract with the Raiders after delivering a strong season, prior to an injury, in 2017. Like most aspects of the 2018 Raiders, Melvin’s contract year is not going well. Projected starting corners Melvin and Gareon Conley are now on the bench.

Here’s the latest out of Oakland:

  • Trade rumors continue to hit Reggie McKenzie-era draft picks, with Amari Cooper, Karl Joseph and even Derek Carr surfacing in them. Although Carr’s status appears secure in 2018, Charles Robinson of Yahoo.com writes some NFL execs are receiving the impression no other non-rookie Raider is untouchable at this year’s trade deadline. While little’s going right for the Raiders, they do have a solid offensive line interior (Kelechi Osemele, Rodney Hudson and Gabe Jackson) and have proven pass rusher Bruce Irvin. All arrived under McKenzie’s watch and helped lead Oakland to a 12-4 2016 season. Cooper’s availability stems from the Raiders, like they were with Khalil Mack, appearing unready to authorize a top-market second contract, per Robinson. It’s a tough time for a franchise that’s endured many of them this century.
  • Marshawn Lynch is one Raider who’s having a decent season, but his campaign may need to be paused. The 32-year-old back is battling a groin strain, and Gruden is concerned this could be a long-term problem (Twitter link via Tafur). Lynch is receiving medical input on the issue this week. Lynch scored touchdowns during the first three games of the season but has averaged fewer than four yards per carry in five of his six games. He rushed for 45 yards on 13 carries in London. The Raiders exercised their post-London bye option, so Lynch has additional time to recover.
  • Having cut Derrick Johnson earlier Tuesday, the Raiders worked out former Broncos linebacker Corey Nelson, veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer tweets. Nelson’s been on the workout circuit for a bit now and hasn’t been able to stick on a team since his Broncos rookie contract expired.

Minor NFL Transactions: 10/6/18

Here are Saturday’s minor moves and additional post-suspension activations:

Buffalo Bills

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars

Los Angeles Chargers

Oakland Raiders

San Francisco 49ers

Ingram, Edelman To Return In Week 5

As we approach Week 5 of the NFL season, several NFL players are returning from four-game bans. As noted by Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter), that list includes notables such as Saints running back Mark Ingram, Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman, Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict, Cowboys defensive tackle David Irving, Chargers defensive tackle Corey Liuget, Colts running back Robert Turbin, Raiders cornerback Daryl Worley, Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith

Players do not count against a team’s roster max while suspended, so clubs will have to make room for these players before adding them for Week 5. There will be some tough decisions to make, but the upside is clear in most of these cases, particularly when it comes to offensive weapons like Ingram and Edelman or defensive pillars like Burfict and Irving.

Alvin Kamara should remain the focal point of the Saints’ running game, but the return of Ingram will give opposing defenses something else to think about. And, as we saw in the first three weeks of the Patriots’ season, Edelman has been sorely missed.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Raiders’ Daryl Worley Facing 4-Game Ban

One of the Raiders’ many offseason acquisitions at cornerback doesn’t stand to be available in September.

Daryl Worley is facing a four-game suspension stemming from his offseason arrest, ESPN.com’s Josina Anderson reports (on Twitter). He pleaded guilty to driving under the influence, resisting arrest and carrying firearms in public. He’s been on three teams this offseason.

Worley’s suspension may explain why the Raiders, who obviously have not been shy about diving into free agency this year, added Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie earlier this month. Worley and DRC join Shareece Wright, Leon Hall and Rashaan Melvin as corners Oakland added in free agency. Not all are a lock to make the 53-man roster, and Worley’s status may not be secure, but the Raiders’ corner corps will look vastly different this season.

A 2016 Panthers third-round pick, Worley was sent to the Eagles in exchange for Torrey Smith but waived after the arrest in April. He started 25 games with Carolina during his two seasons there.

Extra Points: Patriots, 49ers, Raiders, Jets

Although Eric Decker‘s one-year contract with the Patriots has a base value of $1.9MM, the veteran wideout received only $75K in guaranteed money, all in the form of signing bonus, tweets Field Yates of ESPN.com. Decker can earn $2.1MM in total by maxing out bonuses and incentives, but New England won’t have a financial reason not cut him at the end of camp. However, Decker could prove valuable on a Patriots’ depth chart that is not only down Julian Edelman (suspension) for four games, but just lost Jordan Matthews via release. Decker, 31, posted 54 receptions for 563 yards and one touchdown during his lone season with the Titans in 2017.

Here’s more from around the NFL:

  • The 49ers are exhibiting “growing concern” about guard Joshua Garnett‘s right knee injury, per a report from the Associated Press. Garnett, a first-round pick in the 2016 draft, missed the entire 2017 campaign after having surgery on the same knee, so the issue is doubly concerning. After Garnett reportedly banged knees with a teammate in late July, he was expected to return to practice this week, but his presence has been delayed. Garnett is competing for time at right guard — the only open spot on San Francisco’s offensive line — with Jonathan Cooper and Michael Person.
  • After being arrested in April as a member of the Eagles, now Raiders cornerback Daryl Worley plead guilty in to DUI, carrying firearms in public, and resisting arrest, reports Vic Tafur of the Athletic (Twitter link). Worley was sentenced to three days in jail and two years of probation, and his legal issues are now resolved. As such, Worley could be forced to serve a suspension during the 2018 season, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link). Worley was traded to Philadelphia in exchange for wide receiver Torrey Smith earlier this year, but the Eagles cut him the day he was arrested.
  • Speaking of legal problems, Jets linebacker Dylan Donahue plead guilty to a Montana DUI charge earlier this week, according to Rich Cimini of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Donahue was sentenced to three months in jail, but that punishment was suspended upon payment of $1K fine. The second-year defender also plead guilty to a DWI charge in New York earlier this year. Donahue, who rarely played during his rookie campaign, will likely face a NFL-imposed suspension this year.
  • The Bears worked out free agent interior offensive lineman Alex Officer, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. Officer went undrafted out of Pittsburgh earlier this year but landed a deal with the Raiders in May. He was waived just two weeks into his Oakland tenure, and has been sitting on the open market since. Per Wilson, Officer conducted a solid workout, but Chicago isn’t aiming to sign him immediately.

Raiders Rumors: Mack, Conley, Richard

The latest on the Khalil Mack front continues to paint a picture of a situation that has no resolution in sight. Mack remains a Raiders holdout. He and the team are not making progress on an extension, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (on Twitter). If that weren’t enough, Rapoport adds no communication’s commencing and no optimism exists. Jon Gruden having yet to speak with his top player is certainly interesting, with the now-two-time Oakland coach having accepted the job in January. Mack has not reported for any Raiders activities this year. But more than five weeks remain until the regular season begins. Unlike Aaron Donald, Mack has already accrued four seasons toward free agency after not holding out last year. This provides the 2016 defensive player of the year with leverage to continue his holdout beyond August 7, whereas Donald will have to make a big choice by then to avoid possible restricted free agency in 2019.

Here’s the latest from the AFC’s Bay Area franchise:

  • A shin injury Gareon Conley cost almost his entire rookie season, and the corrective surgery cost the 2017 first-round pick part of his offseason. The second-year cornerback has not experienced additional known shin trouble, but he now has encountered a hip problem. Conley missed Saturday and Sunday’s Raiders workouts because of this, and this raised eyebrows among some coaches, Vic Tafur of The Athletic notes (subscription required). The Raiders are calling this ailment a hip strain, but new DC Paul Guenther doesn’t anticipate Conley being out for too long. Daryl Worley took Conley’s place with the Oakland first-stringers, per Tafur.
  • Jalen Richard‘s also dealing with an injury, and without a roster spot secured, this setback figures to pose trouble for his latching on with Gruden’s Raiders. The return man/passing-down back suffered a calf strain at Sunday’s practice, Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports. Richard was spotted walking without crutches after practice, however, but Gehlken anticipates the Raiders adding another running back. Richard and DeAndre Washington, both 2016 additions who have backed up Latavius Murray and then Marshawn Lynch, are believed to be competing for one roster spot. Richard is not expected to factor into the Raiders’ new-look return-men competitions, with the team having signed Dwayne Harris and traded for Ryan Switzer — both having experience under new ST coordinator Rich Bisaccia.
  • Kolton Miller has a legitimate chance to win Oakland’s starting left tackle job, with Donald Penn on the mend for now.

Raiders To Sign CB Daryl Worley

The Raiders have agreed to sign cornerback Daryl Worley, Josina Anderson of ESPN.com tweets. Worley was released by the Eagles last week following a bizarre arrest

According to police, Worley was found passed out inside of a car in Philadelphia at around 6am on the morning of Sunday, April 15. The cornerback was combative with the cops, who ultimately tasered him. After that, police found a gun in Worley’s possession that was not properly registered. He now faces multiple charges, including a violation of the uniform firearms act, driving under the influence, and disorderly conduct.

Worley is now on his third team of 2018. In March, the former third-round pick was shipped from the Panthers to the Eagles in the Torrey Smith trade. The defending champs did not want to wait for things to shake out in court, but the Raiders are apparently willing to take a flier on him.

The Raiders will start Gareon Conley and free agent pickup Rashaan Melvin at the main cornerback spots. Worley joins Melvin, Shareece Wright, Leon Hall, Senquez Golson, and Shaquille Richardson as newcomers to Oakland’s CB group.

In two seasons with Carolina, the West Virginia product recorded three interceptions and two sacks while starting 25 of his 31 games.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.