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Raiders CB David Amerson proves his former coach right in reviving his career with a fresh start

As a Washington rookie, David Amerson returned an interception for a touchdown against the Raiders in 2013.(Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group)

As a Washington rookie, David Amerson returned an interception for a touchdown against the Raiders in 2013.(Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group)

ALAMEDA — It turns out Jay Gruden had it all figured out when Washington put cornerback David Amerson on waivers 10 months ago.

“He might be a great player somewhere else in the next year or so,” Gruden told reporters last Sept. 21. “His career is not over by a long shot. He’s going to go somewhere else and play and probably play well.”

Fast forward to Tuesday, and Amerson, having excelled for the Raiders as a starting cornerback after being claimed on waivers, was talking to reporters on a conference call after signing a four-year contract extension. Continue Reading

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7,458

Report: Raiders sign CB David Amerson to four-year extension with $18 million in guaranteed money

David Amerson has reportedly cashed in with a four-year contract extension. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

David Amerson has reportedly cashed in with a four-year contract extension. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

ALAMEDA _ Cornerback David Amerson, a waiver find last season after washing out in Washington, has reportedly cashed in with the Raiders.

Amerson has agreed to a four-year contract extension with $18 million in guaranteed money and $38 million in total value, the NFL Network reported.

After coming to the Raiders, the former second-round draft pick had four interceptions, 35 passes defensed and 53 total tackles _ all career highs _ in 14 games. Continue Reading

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47,101

David Amerson hopes to build on his career year

Raiders' cornerback David Amerson hopes to build on the career year he experienced in 2015. (AP Photo/Joe Mahoney)

Raiders’ cornerback David Amerson hopes to build on the career year he experienced in 2015. (AP Photo/Joe Mahoney)

David Amerson’s 2015 season started with the lowest of lows. He was cut by the team that once invested a second-round pick in the cornerback.

Remarkably, it finished with him producing a career season for the Raiders after being picked up in a waiver claim.

Amerson was second in the NFL in passes defensed with 25. His four interceptions were double what he had during his first two years plus two games in Washington, who took him No. 51 overall in the 2013 draft out of North Carolina State. Continue Reading

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1,195

Right tackle, backup quarterback will be highlights of training camp position battles

Matt McGloin and Connor Cook expect to battle at backup quarterback. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Matt McGloin and Connor Cook expect to battle at backup quarterback. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

The Raiders won’t have a ton of position battles when training camp begins in late July, but right tackle and backup quarterback might be the biggest.

Menelik Watson and Austin Howard shared most of the repetitions at right tackle during minicamp. The two battled last year with Watson having the edge until suffering a ruptured Achilles in the preseason and he seems to again have the slight edge.

Howard has the benefit of more experience, having started 62 games over the past four season. Watson, by comparison, has just 12 career starts thanks to missing last year due to injury.

The backup quarterback battle figures to generate plenty of training camp chatter simply because quarters always generate chatter.

The Raiders showed they want to give Connor Cook a true look when they opened minicamp Tuesday giving him some of the second-team repetitions alongside incumbent Matt McGloin. But that didn’t last long, with McGloin taking all the second-team turns the past two days.

Cook was not impressive during these past three days. His passes wobbled at times, at others they sailed and he generally did not look like a confident and accurate passer. The accuracy isn’t a major surprise since he was not a high completion percentage passer at Michigan State. .

It’s way too early to judge Cook, but he’ll likely need to make a significant jump by training camp to have a real chance to supplant McGloin as the backup.

At the two return positions, Taiwan Jones and TJ Carrie will go into camp with the best chance of retaining their spots.

Fifth-round pick DeAndre Washington has been getting work at kick returner along with undrafted free agent receivers Joe Hansley and Jaydon Mickens, both of who also got work at punt returner.

Special teams coordinator Brad Seely was somewhat contradictory when talking about how he views those spots.

“I don’t think there’s any leader,” Seely said initially before adding, ” You have to start with TJ Carrie because he’s been there on the punt returns. Then you have to start with Taiwan on the kickoff return, who did a really good job for us last year. As always, as we tell those young guys or new guys, that they have to beat somebody out if they want to get that job. We have a lot of guys working, a lot of guys working hard. We’ll see once we start playing games, who does well.”

Amari Cooper returned a few punts last year and it didn’t go all that well, but Seely wouldn’t rule out using him again if the situation called for it.

“I think we’ll do whatever we have to do to help our football team,” Seely said. “If he can help us, just like last year he had to come in there in certain situations, we played him. I think we’re also going to be smart. Obviously, he’s such a talent as a wide receiver. We want to pick and choose those spots, but he’s working and catching. It depends on the situation. If the situation arises where we need him, we’ll use him.”

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82

Healthy Raiders wrap up offseason program

Raiders coach Jack Del Rio expects to have his entire roster available when training camp begins. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Raiders coach Jack Del Rio expects to have his entire roster available when training camp begins. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

The Raiders wrapped their offseason program Thursday happy and, more importantly, healthy.

Raiders coach Jack Del Rio said he expects to have his entire roster available when training camp begins in Napa in six weeks.

“I think we feel good about the whole team coming into camp being ready to work,” Del Rio said. “Obviously, we’ll see when we get there, but that’s the anticipation, that we’d have a healthy team going into camp.”

The Raiders got through this week’s three-day mandatory minicamp with only seven players among the 90-man active roster unable to see any action. Only one player, cornerback DJ Hayden, suffered an injury during the three days of practice that caused him to miss a day. He sat out Thursday with what Del Rio termed “a little tweak.” Continue Reading

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1,340

Amari Cooper letting his voice be heard a little more

Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper is talking a little more this year. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper is talking a little more this year. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Amari Cooper seems to be taking on a slightly more talkative role thus far with both his teammates and the media.

The Raiders’ second-year wide receiver chatted on Wednesday following Day 2 of the team’s mandatory three-day minicamp and hit a solid range of topics.

Regarding the foot injury that hampered him toward the end of last season, Cooper said: “It’s always frustrating when you can’t do all the things you really want to do out there. But injuries are a part of the game. But I did learn from it. You’re supposed to take care of your body and not take it lightly.”

He spoke of his increased comfort level as a second-year player. Continue Reading

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Carr honored by Crabtree’s Favre comparison

Derek Carr was honored by Michael Crabtree's comparison to Brett Favre. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Derek Carr was honored by Michael Crabtree’s comparison to Brett Favre. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Raiders quarterback Derek Carr was honored by the compliment paid to him recently by Michael Crabtree, who said last week that his quarterback reminded him a lot of Hall of Famer Brett Favre.

“Brett is somebody that I looked up to as a kid, the way he played the game,” Carr said. “So I wore No. 4 ever since I could remember, I always wanted to wear 4 somehow, some way. For him to say that, it was so cool because I don’t think I’ve told him that. Continue Reading

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Raiders’ Carr and Cooper connection coalescing in second season together

The chemistry of Derek Carr and Amari Cooper is growing in their second year together. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

The chemistry of Derek Carr and Amari Cooper is growing in their second year together. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Their first year together saw both Derek Carr and Amari Cooper find their way to the Pro Bowl, albeit as alternates.

Add a full offseason to that and what can the Raiders expect from their potentially dynamic young quarterback and wide receiver combination?

The early signs show the young duo is ready to jump to another level.

“I’m able to throw the ball a lot earlier,” Carr said of his increased rapport with Cooper. “I’m able to trust where he’s going to be at. I’m used to seeing his routes run a certain way. Those are the things that take time.

“It’s always going to take time getting that chemistry down, but it’s nice to see all the hard work in practice that we’ve had together paying off out here in practice and hopefully come August, September and through the season.” Continue Reading

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Raiders minicamp Day 1: Malcolm Smith returns, Carr and Cooper hook up, backup QBs rotate reps

Derek Carr had a strong first day of Raiders minicamp. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Derek Carr had a strong first day of Raiders minicamp. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Along with defensive lineman Mario Edwards Jr., Tuesday’s first day of the Raiders minicamp also marked the return of linebacker Malcolm Smith. An undisclosed injury had kept him from participating in team drills during OTAs.

“Good to get out there and starting to get more guys healthy and able to join us today, which is good to see,” coach Jack Del Rio said.

Safety Reggie Nelson has still yet to see the field for the Raiders, although the team says he has been on site at the facility. Running back Roy Helu Jr., who had offseason hip surgery, and defensive lineman Denico Autry, also were not at practice. Continue Reading

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Del Rio lends ‘passionate support’ toward Warriors

Jack Del Rio isn’t afraid to get behind his fellow Bay Area teams. It’s not a false fandom either when you consider the Oakland Raiders coach is a Hayward native who grew up cheering for the home teams, including the Golden State Warriors.

Del Rio showed off his passion during Monday night’s Game 5 of the NBA Finals in which he was seated right behind one of the baskets. Any questions about how much he was into the game were answered when he jumped from his seat to protest what he was ruled a jump ball situation between the Warriors’ Klay Thompson and Cleveland’s Tristan Thompson. Continue Reading

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