Wednesday, August 14, 2013
Hope for Jared Veldheer and Raiders
By Bill Williamson
Earlier Wednesday, we reacted to the Oakland Raiders' announcement that standout left tackle Jared Veldheer would be out for at least half the season with a torn triceps. The team said he could miss the entire season.
Our reaction was that this wasn’t pretty. Veldheer is a potential star, and his current replacement, Alex Barron, didn’t play in the NFL last year. It would be devastating blow.
However, ESPN’s Adam Schefter provides hope. He reported Wednesday evening that Veldheer has only a partially torn triceps and that physicians believe he will be available for most of the season.
While recovery times vary, this could be a one-to-three-month injury. Former Baltimore linebacker Ray Lewis and San Francisco defensive end Justin Smith both came back from similar injuries last season.
If Veldheer, a free agent after this season, misses only a few games it would be a huge relief for Oakland. I talked to ESPN analyst Matt Williamson after the initial news broke, and he painted an ugly picture.
“It is a total mess,” Williamson said at the time. “I really liked Veldheer and felt like he was on the cusp of becoming one of the better left tackles in football and clearly one of the Raiders’ few building blocks for the future.”
Suddenly, though, the immediate future looks brighter for Veldheer and the Raiders.