Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Raiders still hopeful about Zach Miller
By Bill Williamson
NAPA, Calif. -- Random notes from the Raiders’ training camp:
Sunday, the feeling around the team was the re-signing of Zach Miller was almost a certainty. Oakland coach Hue Jackson indicated that Miller would soon be a Raider. Then, Monday rolled around and the Pro Bowl tight end was getting the full-court press in Seattle during a visit.
The word in Seattle is the Seahawks are trying hard to get a deal done
Monday, Jackson said he was hopeful it would work out with Miller. But he seemed less than sure. I talked to several Oakland players about Miller on Monday evening and his status is certainly on the minds of the team. There's no doubt his Oakland teammates want him back.
The Raiders opened some space for Miller by re-signing linebacker Kamerion Wimbley to a five-year, $48 million deal. He was previously the Raiders’ franchised player for 2011. Jackson was elated to tie up Wimbley for the long term. Because he signed a new deal, Wimbley now can’t practice until Thursday as part of the new CBA.
“Kamerion Wimbley, new Raider, free agency,” Jackson said. “It’s one of our signings. Write that down everybody. No, that’s what it is. … Again, it’s just our organization continuing to lock up a good young talent.”
From listening to Jackson, I wouldn’t be shocked if receiver Jacoby Ford didn’t play until the season opener, Sept. 12 at Denver. Jackson said he has no doubt Ford will be back as he side-stepped a question about whether or not Ford’s broken hand will require surgery. If Ford needs more than a couple of weeks, it may behoove the team to keep him out of the preseason.
Jackson said the Raiders were sticking to their mantra of checking out good players by visiting with former Seattle middle linebacker Lofa Tatupu. He indicated Tatupu would play an outside linebacker position (likely weakside) if he was signed. Jackson made it clear second-year middle linebacker Rolando McClain is not moving. Tatupu, who many scouts believe is near the end of his career, is visiting Washington.