Oakland Raiders: 7 Things To Keep An Eye On Against Arizona Cardinals

GLENDALE, AZ - AUGUST 12: Derek Carr
GLENDALE, AZ - AUGUST 12: Derek Carr /
2 of 8
Oakland Raiders
SEATTLE, WA – NOVEMBER 02: Quarterback Derek Carr /

Is There A Crack In The Wall?

The Raiders rolled into the offseason secure in the knowledge that they had one of the top two or three offensive lines in all of football. Oakland’s offensive line was absolutely dominant – even with some question marks at the right tackle position.

The team tried to address those question marks – as well as plan for the future – by signing free agent Marshall Newhouse and drafting a pair of tackles in Jylan Ware and David Sharpe.

Everything seemed to be going in the right direction – until the team hit a 300 pound speedbump.

More from Las Vegas Raiders News

Left tackle Donald Penn didn’t report to camp and is holding out, unhappy with his current contract. Given that he’s performed like a top-five tackle in the league for the last couple of seasons, it seems fair that he’d want top-five money.

Especially after watching the team invest big money in linemates Rodney Hudson, Kelechi Osemele, and Gabe Jackson.

McKenzie doesn’t seem like he’s going to budge and Penn is insisting that he won’t budge. The two men are locked in a game of chicken that could have big consequences for the coming season.

So, as the team tries to prepare for a Penn-less line, they’re going to have to try to dial up the right combination that will protect quarterback Derek Carr.

Along with Newhouse, Sharpe, and Ware, Oakland also has Vadal Alexander and Denver Kirkland – both of whom played a bit of tackle last season as well. So, they’re going to have some options.

The question is, if it comes down to it, can any of those guys fill the hole left by Penn? Will they be as effective on the run and be able to offer the same sort of protection that Penn gave Carr last season when he allowed just single sack on the year?

We don’t know – and hope the team doesn’t have to find out when the regular season starts – but it’s a question mark the team will begin trying to answer against Arizona.