Derek Carr, Matt McGloin, Connor Cook
Nothing much to see here. The Raiders didn’t draft Cook in the fourth round to not hang onto him and they aren’t ready to move on from McGloin as the backup. They’re keeping all three quarterbacks.
Running backs (5)
Latavius Murray, DeAndre Washington, Taiwan Jones, Jalen Richard, Jamize Olawale
Murray is the starting tailback and Olawale is the lead fullback. Jones remains a key special teams cog and Washington will be the primary backup. Richard has missed both preseason games with a knee injury, with ESPN reporting Thursday that they hope to have him back for the exhibition finale. Even without playing, he still gets the nod over George Atkinson III. Atkinson followed up his electric first preseason game with just three carries for three yards. He did have a pair of special teams tackles, which helps his case for a roster spot, but it’s still have to find a roster spot for him on this team.
Wide receivers (5)
Amari Cooper, Michael Crabtree, Seth Roberts, Andre Holmes, Johnny Holton
No surprises in that top-four group. Johnny Holton had two catches for 24 yards Thursday, although he bobbled the heck out of a 21-yard catch before corralling with his legs. Along with his return skills, Holton still seems like the best bet to earn the No. 5 receiver spot.
Tight ends (3)
Lee Smith, Clive Walford, Mychal Rivera
Smith is the starter as the blocking tight end, Walford is the top passing target. Rivera, who had a bad drop Thursday, might’ve been fighting a little more to keep his spot if not for the injury to Gabe Holmes. With Holmes bound for IR, Rivera’s the No. 3.
Offensive lineman (8)
Donald Penn, Kelechi Osemele, Rodney Hudson, Gabe Jackson, Menelik Watson, Austin Howard, Jon Feliciano, Matt McCants
The first five names are your starters. Howard is the swing tackle, Feliciano will backup at the interior three spots on the line. McCants and seventh-round pick Vadal Alexander could be battling for one spot if the Raiders do actually only keep eight lineman. They’d hope to get Alexander on the practice squad if he is cut.
Defensive lineman (8)
Mario Edwards, Jihad Ward, Justin Ellis, Dan Williams, Denico Autry, Stacy McGee, Leon Orr, Darius Latham
Edwards is a starter once healthy, but Ward and Autry should handle it until Edwards comes back and then battle for a starting spot with him in the meantime. Ellis has owned the lead for the nose tackle job over Williams, but that could eventually change. Latham has nice versatility and played some reps with the 1s in Green Bay. McGee and Orr help give this group admirable depth.
Edge rushers (4)
Khalil Mack, Bruce Irvin, Shilique Calhoun, James Cowser
Mack and Irvin are the starters and third-round pick Calhoun and undrafted free agent Cowser back them both up. Let’s see if this crew adds Aldon Smith back at some point.
Ben Heeney, Malcolm Smith, Cory James, Korey Toomer, Neiron Ball
Heeney and Smith start in the base defense while James, Toomer and Ball back them up and contribute as key special teams players.
Sean Smith, David Amerson, DJ Hayden, TJ Carrie, Dexter McDonald
Smith and Amerson start and Hayden handles the nickel plus backs up on the outside. Carrie could still play some safety if it’s even needed. McDonald’s had a nice camp and last year’s seventh-round pick could be ready to contribute.
Reggie Nelson, Karl Joseph, Nate Allen, Keith McGill
Nelson and Joseph lead this crew and Allen gives a veteran presence as a backup. McGill moved ahead of Dewey McDonald at safety, although McDonald made a couple nice special teams plays Thursday that could get him back in the mix. Brynden Trawick, known as a special teams ace, had a blocked punt Thursday and the Raiders could go thin at another spot to keep an extra safety/core special teamer.
This was never really a competition with Giorgio Tavecchio, whose missed PAT certainly won’t do anything to change that.
He’s the only punter on the roster and was signed to an extension in the offseason.
Long snapper (1)
Condo has come back solid from the shoulder injury and should hold off Andrew East to keep his spot.