The Oakland Raiders continue their trend of signing low-cost free agents to short contracts with their sight set on the upcoming season. Most recently, the Silver & Black has inked running back Rashad Jennings and safety Reggie Smith. Also, the Raiders have been taking a closer look at some quarterbacks, bringing in Vince Young, Troy Smith, Tyler Thigpen and Seneca Wallace for workouts. The latter was reported as a would-be signed by Oakland, which wasn’t confirmed afterwards. As of now, Oakland still has only two QBs in its roster: Matt Flynn and Terrelle Pryor.
Despite reports by NFL insiders Jason La Canfora and Adam Caplan, former Seahawks and Browns’ QB Seneca Wallace has not signed with the Raiders. The 32-year-old did not play in 2012 after being cut by Cleveland before the start of the season. The former Iowa State standout, who was a 4th round pick in 2003, had his best season as a pro in 2008 for Seattle, when he passed for 1,532 yards, 11 touchdowns and 3 interceptions in 8 games as a starter. The 10-year veteran has career numbers of 31 TDs and 18 INTs.
Vince Young, the former rookie of the year in 2006, had reportedly a good workout for the Raiders this week, but it has not translated into deep contract talks. The former 3rd overall pick out of Texas, who will be 30 years old on May, has been trying to get back to the football shape that made him a full-time starter for the Titans over his first two seasons as a pro, when he averaged 2,372.5 passing yards, 10.5 TDs and 15 INTs, to go along with 473.5 yards and 5 TDs on the ground. After leaving the Titans, Young signed to be Michael Vick’s backup for the Eagles in 2011, then joining the Bills in 2012 before being cut prior to the start of the season.
The soon-to-be 29-year-old Tyler Thigpen has spent the last two seasons as a backup for the Bills. His best season as a pro happened in 2008 when he started 11 games for the Chiefs, passing for 2,608 yards, 18 TDs and 12 INTs.
Troy Smith has bounced through three NFL and one UFL teams since winning the Heisman Trophy in 2006 and being selected as a 5th round pick in 2007 by the Ravens. His best season as a pro happened in 2010 for the 49ers, when the 28-year-old passed for 1176 yards, 5 TDs and 4 INTs. Smith did not play in 2012 after being cut by the Steelers during training camp.
Rashad Jennings is a former 7th round pick in 2009 by the Jaguars, where he has spent all four years of his pro career. After averaging 5.2 yards per carry in 2009, and 5.5 yards per carry in 2010, the 28-year-old stuggled with injuries, specially a knee issue that forced him to miss the whole 2011 season. In 2012, Jennings was reduced to 283 yards and 2 TDs, while averaging just 2.8 yards per carry. He’s regarded as a power back, who had the best game of his career against the Raiders in 2010, when he ran for 109 yards, including a 74-yard TD. Jennings signed an one-year, $630,000 deal.
The 26-year-old safety Reggie Smith was out of football in 2012 after being cut by the Panthers prior to the start of the season. He’s a former 3rd round pick by the 49ers in 2008 out of Oklahoma, where he spent the first four years of his pro career, mostly as a special teamer and backup. His best season happened in 2010, when Smith started seven games, recording 42 total tackles, four pass deflections and one interception. He agreed to an one-year, $715,000 contract.
Here are some other notes of the day regarding the Raiders:
- Before signing with Jennings, Oakland also had a workout with RB Bernard Scott, who was later re-signed by the Bengals.
- Other workouts of the week for the Raiders were TE Cameron Morrah, a 7th round pick by Seattle in 2009, and Jacob Lacey, a 25-year-old CB who started 36 games over his four-year career for the Colts and Lions.
- Arkansas State safety Don Jones visited the Raiders’ facilities. He’s regarded as a late-round pick.
- Details on CB Mike Jenkins’ deal with the Raiders released, per Aaron Wilson: one-year, $1.5 million, including $550,000 bonus, $800,000 non guaranteed salary and $150,000 workout bonus.
- Also on DE Andre Carter’s contract: one-year, $1 million ($940,000 salary plus $60,000 workout bonus). Deal includes an injury waiver clause.
- Details on CB Joselio Hanson’s deal: one-year, $1 million deal ($840,000 base salary, plus $95,000 roster bonus and $65,000 workout bonus). He will earn the entire $1 million figure if he plays in all 16 games.
- LB Rolando McClain, who was recently waived by the Raiders, signed a one-year, $ 1.1 million maximum deal ($700,000 base salary plus $400,000 on playing-time incentives).