There is a lot of work to do for the Oakland Raiders before the season. It starts with NFL training camp. Who is going in hot and who needs help?
Denarius Moore – WR – Stock: Down
Once viewed as the future #1 receiver for the Oakland Raiders, Denarius Moore has watched his stock slowly decay over the past two seasons. Not only is he not considered the main option anymore thanks to the emergence of Rod Streater and arrival of James Jones, but now he’s in danger of not even being the third wide receiver with Juron Criner, Greg Little and Andre Holmes all behind him. If he doesn’t make some kind of statement in training camp, the Raiders might not only bench him but release him outright.
Derek Carr – QB – Stock: Up
OTA and minicamp practices couldn’t have gone much better for Derek Carr. Initially tagged as the third-string quarterback behind Matt McGloin, the rookie 2nd round pick showcased his talent on the field and his maturity off it to the point that coaches felt comfortable moving him up to the main backup position. That was the first step but there is work left to do. Oakland is confident that veteran Matt Schaub will be the starter in 2014 but training camps can quickly change minds. If Carr continues to ascend like he has
D.J. Hayden – CB – Stock: Down
Nobody could deny the talent cornerback D.J. Hayden had coming out of college. It was that talent after all that got the Oakland Raiders to take a gamble on overlooking the clear injury red flags he brought with him. Those same problems have haunted him since he’s entered the league. The latest is a severe ankle sprain that has kept him in a walking boot. Coaches don’t foresee him coming back until the start of training camp, at which point he may no longer have a starting job.
Miles Burris – LB – Stock: Up
Who knew a simple tweak in the roster could open the door for a player many had already forgotten? As a rookie in 2012, linebacker Miles Burris had a very solid season with 96 tackles, 1.5 sacks and an interception. Unfortunately his career took a nose dive when an injury kept him out until week 11 of 2013, by which point he was relegated to special team. Now, suddenly, as the Raiders have brought in Khalil Mack at strong side linebacker, expectations were that second-year man Sio Moore could simply slide to the weak side. Apparently that assumption was premature. Moore has not made the transition well thus far, and in that same space of time Burris has taken advantage, leapfrogging him for the 1st team practice reps. It is certainly a developing battle worth watching.