Oakland Raiders Rumors & News

UNLV Hires Lawyer To Negotiate With Raiders

  • UNLV hired a pricey lawyer to negotiate terms with the Raiders on the parties’ future use of the $1.9 billion domed stadium set for construction and future use, Adam Candee of the Las Vegas Sun reports. The Mountain West Conference program and the Raiders are legally bound, via state mandate, to co-exist at the to-be-constructed venue. But the sides have to negotiate the agreement. Florio notes the Raiders proposed the first draft of said agreement, one Candee and Florio note was tilted toward the NFL team.

Raiders, Gareon Conley Talking Contract

Rookie Gareon Conley could conceivably face sexual assault charges stemming from his pre-draft incident. That issue complicates things when it comes to his contract, but the Raiders are not necessarily going to wait for a resolution to things before hammering out a deal. Talks are underway and ongoing, Mike Florio of PFT hears. Gareon Conley (vertical)

The Raiders investigated the allegations against Conley as thoroughly as possible in the days leading up to the draft. Presumably, the Raiders felt that any sexual conduct Conley engaged in was consensual. They likely assumed that he would be cleared of any wrongdoing before the start of training camp, but that might not happen with a little over week to go.

It remains to be seen whether the Raiders will actually ink Conley to a contract before his case is resolved. If they do, they may push for protections that wouldn’t ordinarily be in a rookie’s contract. Conley’s camp may bristle at the notion of accepting less guaranteed money than a typical No. 24 overall pick or allowing the Raiders to have extra escape hatches in the deal.

Beyond the murkiness of his legal situation, the two sides could also butt heads over the guarantees of Conley’s slot versus the guarantees of players drafted around him. Jarrad Davis, taken with the No. 21 overall pick, had his full four-year deal guaranteed. Dolphins rookie Charles Harris, taken No. 22 overall, has 97.31% guaranteed. Giants rookie Evan Engram, selected with the 23rd pick, has more than 96% of his deal locked in. The Raiders may not be inclined to give Conley a deal like Engram’s in light of his off-the-field circumstances.

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Raiders Sign Two Players

The Raiders announced the signings of running back John Crockett and offensive lineman Kareem Are. The team also confirmed the previously reported addition of linebacker Brady Sheldon.

Are was a two-year starter at Florida State and earned an All-ACC Second Team nomination in his final year on campus. He participated in the Raiders’ rookie minicamp in May as a tryout player and, like Sheldon, he finds himself with a contract here in July.

Crockett’s initial entry into the league came when he signed with the Packers as an undrafted free agent in May 2015. Unfortunately, he has been slowed by injury in the NFL and was forced to miss the entire 2016 season. He has nine carries for 21 yards in the NFL with all attempts coming over the course of two games as a rookie. As a senior at North Dakota State in 2014, Crockett set school records for all-purpose yards (2,419), rushing yards (1,994) and rushing attempts (368).

The Raiders’ roster is now back to the 90-man max following some roster shuffling earlier this month.

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Raiders To Pay $378MM Relocation Fee

  • Thanks to the relocations of the Rams, Chargers and Raiders, the league’s other 29 teams will each receive a gross sum of $55.2MM over an 11-year span, reports Darren Rovell of ESPN. The two Los Angeles teams, the Rams and Chargers, will each pay a $645MM relocation fee from December 2019 to December 2028, while the soon-to-be Las Vegas Raiders will owe $378MM. They won’t have to begin paying until the year they actually move to Vegas.

Raiders Sign Undrafted Linebacker

The Raiders have signed linebacker Brady Sheldon, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. The Ferris State product was in rookie camp with the Raiders earlier this summer and made a strong impression on coaches. Brady Sheldon (vertical)

[RELATED: Latest On Raiders’ Gareon Conley]

The Raiders waived three players last week, including two linebackers, so it was expected that they would add to the roster. With speed working in his favor, Sheldon will look to stick in Oakland as an outside linebacker. The Raiders project to start Bruce Irvin and Shilique Calhoun at the OLB spots with support from Jelani Jenkins and fifth-round pick Marquel Lee. James Cowser, and Tyrell Adams are also among the OLBs in camp.

Ferris State, located in Big Rapids and Grand Rapids, Michigan, is not exactly known as a football powerhouse. However, the Division II program has turned out some quality talent. Sheldon’s invite to Raiders camp this year marked the fifth consecutive year in which a Ferris State player received an NFL opportunity. Now, he’s on the 90-man roster with an eye on making the final cut.

In his final season on campus, Sheldon tallied 54 tackles, one sack, 2.5 tackles for a loss, and three pass defenses in 14 games.

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Gabe Jackson Extension Details

  • While the full details and structure of Gabe Jackson‘s five-year, $56MM extension with the Raiders aren’t yet know, Joel Corry of CBSSports.com (Twitter links) has passed along a few particulars of the deal. Oakland, well-known fans of the pay-as-you-go contract structure, employed that technique with Jackson, per Corry, meaning the club did not use a signing bonus. Such a composition should allow the Raiders to easily exit the pact in future years. Jackson’s 2017 cap charge has now increased from roughly $1.945MM to ~$10.648MM, meaning Oakland utilized about $8.7MM of its available cap space.

Latest On Raiders’ Gareon Conley

Two and a half months ago, Gareon Conley met with authorities regarding a woman’s allegation of sexual assault against him, and the rookie Raiders cornerback’s attorney expected a resolution on this case to come six to eight weeks from that meeting.

No such resolution has emerged, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports. Conley has not been charged in connection with this alleged incident, but no word has come out whether he will be or not. After 10 weeks, the cornerback’s future is still clouded because of this matter.

Conley is one of the seven first-round picks who hasn’t signed his rookie deal. The Raiders may be waiting for this matter to be resolved before signing the corner to a deal, Florio offers, noting the $5.5MM-plus signing bonus that will come Conley’s way as part of this impending agreement.

A woman accused Conley of sexual assault at a Cleveland hotel in April, and it affected the Ohio State product’s draft stock. Conley said he did have a consensual sexual encounter with the woman on April 9, an act his attorney specified was not intercourse, Conley’s vehemently denied her allegations.

The Raiders open training camp July 29, and this process dragging on past then would push it firmly into distraction territory for a team that gambled and selected Conley 24th overall.

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Raiders Waive Three

  • The Raiders announced that they’ve waived linebackers Andy Mulumba and Neiron Ball and long snapper Anthony Kukwa. The team designated Ball as waived/injured. He and Mulumba have banked NFL experience, though neither has logged game action since 2015. Mulumba, whom the Raiders signed in January, has a longer track record than Ball, having appeared in 22 games (three starts) with the Packers from 2013-15. As a rookie in 2015, when the Raiders used a sixth-round pick on him, Ball started in two of six appearances and picked up a sack. He didn’t play last season after the Raiders waived/injured him prior to Week 1. As for Kukwa, he just signed with the Raiders as an undrafted free agent from Lake Erie College back in May.

Jihad Ward Undergoes Foot Surgery

  • Raiders starting defensive lineman Jihad Ward recently underwent left foot surgery, reports Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link). The procedure was minor and should keep Ward out until mid-August, adds Rapoport. The second-year man suffered the injury during practice on June 6, per Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal. As a rookie last season, Ward tallied 13 starts in 16 appearances, though Pro Football Focus gave his performance the worst grade among the NFL’s 127 qualified interior defensive linemen.

Raiders Sign Rookie DT Eddie Vanderdoes

The Raiders have signed third-round defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes, the club announced today.Eddie Vanderdoes (Vertical)

Vanderdoes, the 88th overall selection, spent four seasons with UCLA but only saw action in three of those campaigns, as he tore his ACL in the 2015 season opener and was granted a medical redshirt. In 2016, the 6’3″, 305-pound Vanderdoes appeared in 11 games, managing 27 total tackles and 1.5 sacks. Prior to the draft, Lance Zierlein of NFL.com compared Vanderdoes to current Seahawks interior defender Ahtyba Rubin, while Pro Football Focus lauded Vanderdoes’ quick hands and low pad level.

The Raiders released veteran defensive tackle Dan Williams this offseason, so Vanderdoes will certainly have an opportunity to pick up some of Williams’ 366 defensive snaps. At present, Oakland is projected to start Jihad Ward and Justin Ellis at defensive tackle, with Darius Latham, Vanderdoes, and fellow rookie Treyvon Hester in reserve.

With Vanderdoes, only eight 2017 draft picks remain unsigned, and that list that includes two other Raiders: first-round cornerback Gareon Conley and second-round safety Obi Melifonwu.

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