Thursday, March 22, 2012
Raiders odds and ends
By Bill Williamson
Oakland general manager Reggie McKenzie talked to reporters during Stanford’s pro day on Thursday.
McKenzie dropped several nuggets:
Oakland's plan is indeed to move Stefen Wisniewski from left guard to center. That became apparent when the Raiders re-signed guard Cooper Carlisle. He is expected to play left guard and newly signed Mike Brisiel will be the right guard. McKenzie left open the possibility that the team could yet bring in a center — but I’d expect Wisniewski to be the center and for him to do well there.
McKenzie said the Raiders have less than $4 million in salary-cap room. But because Oakland still needs another player or two — and must account for its rookie class — there always could be some more restructured deals.
McKenzie said the Raiders need an outside linebacker. Oakland hopes to get No. 97 as a compensatory draft pick for several free-agent losses in 2011 and that’s where it could look. Manny Lawson, who can play defensive end and linebacker, has also caught the Raiders’ eye.
It sounds like McKenzie is starting to focus on the draft and is looking at free agency to add depth in a few spots. It seems that other than outside linebacker, the Raiders feel pretty set with their starting lineup.
McKenzie indicated that the team will address the backup situations at quarterback and running back at a later date. I would like to see the Raiders upgrade at tight end. Brandon Myers or David Ausberry will likely vie to start at this point.
In other AFC West news:
Kansas City linebacker Jovan Belcher signed his restricted-free-agent tender.
San Diego free-agent linebacker Everette Brown signed with the Lions. He was used little last year and the Chargers had no plans to bring him back.