Mario Edwards Jr. not involved in team drills at first OTA

Raiders defensive lineman Mario Edwards didn't join in for team drills when OTAs began Tuesday. (Raiders.com photo)

Raiders defensive lineman Mario Edwards didn’t join in for team drills when OTAs began Tuesday. (Raiders.com photo)

Mario Edwards Jr. was on the field when the Raiders opened their first organized team activity Tuesday, but the second-year defensive end left the field when team drills began.

Edwards, who has said on social media that he’s been cleared to play, is returning from a neck injury suffered in Week 15 of last season. He stretched with the team, but left the field and went to the weight room when practiced ramped up.

The team has remained mum on his status, with coach Jack Del Rio falling back on his personal policy to not speak about injured players except for during the season when the league requires teams to provide updates.

“Because I don’t spent time going through any one,” Del Rio said of his injured players, “I’m not going to make Mario an exception. I would just say they’re all here, they’re all working hard and eager to return.”

Safety Reggie Nelson, one of the team’s key free agents, also didn’t practice Tuesday and was not on the field at all. Backup running back Roy Helu Jr., who had offseason hip surgery, also was not at practice.

Several others were on the field, but not fully participating. That includes inside linebacker Malcolm Smith and first-round pick Karl Joseph, who is expected back by training camp from ACL surgery he had as a senior at West Virginia. Joseph worked out on the side with a trainer. Right tackle Austin Howard, who injured his knee late last season, spent the entire practice on the field but didn’t join in for team drills.

Second-year tight end Clive Walford, who injured his knee in an offseason ATV accident, was on the field to stretch with the team before retreating to the weight room. Linebacker Neiron Ball, whose season ended following a Week 7 knee injury last year, and cornerback Neiko Thorpe, did the same.


Jimmy Durkin

Sports writer for the Bay Area News Group, covering the Raiders.

  • rifflicks

    did the Raider Medical Staff clear him….he never said they did

  • My stance remains the same. I’m not worried about him missing any game time over it.

  • DutchRaid

    Give him a break Rik, if anything you should offer him a little congratulations…he just got this today!

  • Rikster/Raid/Mystique

    Great great comment…

  • inonewordraider

    And u know hes not in football shape because of telepathy?

  • RaiderCODE

    Mark basically said today he’s letting the Vegas thing play out before he talks to anyone in Oakland again…

  • DutchRaid

    New Post!

  • rifflicks

    Great…..now shut up about it

  • Rikster/Raid/Mystique

    Can’t blame him

  • EXACTLY!!!

    This is what Dutch and I tried telling Oak and EP

  • Rikster/Raid/Mystique


  • Ajemerso

    Can not blame him

  • They didn’t let him practice today – so if he is not allowed to practice who would ask the question “u know hes not in football shape because of telepathy”

    No Einstein I know he is not in football shape because he is not allowed to practice – never has there been a more clear answer to a question posed on this blog!

  • Ajemerso

    I believe in you mark

  • Ajemerso

    I support Mark Davis

  • Morilla_00

    yeah, that’s really a great way to work with the place you said you are committed to. Way to show you are willing to do the hard work and push through it.

    Keep acting like a kid.

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  • Ghost of Jeff Hostetler

    Seems legit

  • Steve

    I support Las Vegas.