The Raiders will be without their longest-tenured offensive lineman for around two months. They appear set to look at outside options in the interim.
Gabe Jackson‘s knee injury will mean Oakland goes into this season without either of the guard starters it deployed primarily for the past three seasons, with the team having already traded Kelechi Osemele to New York in March. Already set to be without Richie Incognito for two weeks because of a suspension, the Raiders are expected to explore the guard trade market, Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal tweets.
Incognito arrived shortly after the draft, with Jon Gruden advocating for another guard to replace Osemele instead of the team’s in-house options. At right guard presently, depth signing Jordan Devey will receive the first shot at replacing Jackson, Gruden said (via Gehlken, on Twitter). Devey has started just four games over the past three seasons, each coming as a member of the Chiefs.
Fourth-year UDFA Denver Kirkland is also in that mix; Denzelle Good remains on the team’s active/PUP list. Jackson hurt his knee during practice this week. The Raiders have more than $18MM in cap space, but with Jackson and Incognito potentially set to debut together by October, it would be interesting to see them give up too much to acquire a stopgap guard.
Still attached to the $10MM-AAV deal he signed in 2017, Jackson has started 72 games for the Raiders since arriving as a 2014 third-round pick. He finished last season on IR and would be a candidate for an IR-return player to start this season, but that would only be the case if the Raiders believed his timetable would involve a return closer to November rather than October.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.