With right tackle and free safety still up in the air for the Raiders, and the possibility of another severely condensed offseason of work becoming more likely, Raiders fans are wondering if there is an even greater need to add more veteran players.
That point and many others were broached in this week’s mailbag.
Barryano (@443bs): Is it more important now for the Raiders, with the limited OTAs like last year, to bring in a veteran DB like a Richard Sherman or a Casey Hayward that knows Gus Bradley’s system?
Vincent Bonsignore: That is probably a pretty good idea. The sense is the Raiders will add some veteran players over the next few weeks after getting a better idea of where their roster stands and what the player market looks like.
elliot edelstein (@elliot_elraid66): Will Richard Sherman become a Raider?
VB: Richard Sherman certainly holds some interest as the Raiders can stand to get a little more experienced in the secondary. Sherman, given his experience playing under Gus Bradley, brings an element of scheme understanding in addition to the experience and leadership he adds.
The tricky part is adding veteran presence but not stunting the growth of the young players the Raiders have drafted. For instance, the best way for Damon Arnette to develop is to get on the field and play. Would the presence of Sherman interfere with that or enhance it?
Apple Sticker (@OilOracle): Should the Raiders go after DT Sheldon Richardson?
VB: It is somewhat conspicuous that less than 24 hours after the Raiders released defensive linemen Arden Key and Maurice Hurst that Richardson would become available.
Obviously, money will be a factor, but Richardson’s ability to play the three-technique, interior pass-rush role would fit perfectly in Bradley’s defense.
That said, the Raiders have an abundance of defensive linemen on the roster. So fitting him in would mean some roster reshuffling.
Estuardo Paz (@PazTeam): With the number of great offensive linemen that are available in this year’s draft, why would you pick one at 17? Shouldn’t the Raiders focus on the best defensive player available?
VB: The Raiders could be in position to have their cake and eat it too, thanks to the abundance of quality offensive line prospects in this draft. Say, for instance, a game-changing defensive prospect like Penn State’s Micah Parsons falls to No. 17. The Raiders could draft him and delay getting their tackle until the second or third round.
Cordell Bradley (@ctheraiderfan): Jon Gruden hired Gus Bradley and his whole staff, so why do Raiders fans think that Gruden is making all the decisions on defense without Gus’s input?
VB: Great question. By all accounts, both Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock value the input of Bradley and are heeding it.