The Raiders concluded training camp on Friday at Allegiant Stadium. A training camp unlike any other, constructed around the constraints of the coronavirus pandemic.
Devoid of preseason games. Devoid of fans.
“It’s been one adaptation after another,” Las Vegas coach Jon Gruden said. “We had to fast-track a lot of these players. And we didn’t even know a lot of these guys.”
Now they do.
With camp complete, Gruden and the Raiders will shift their focus to the finalization of the 53-man roster, which must happen by 1 p.m. Saturday. Then, it’s on to the Sunday, Sept 13, opener against the Carolina Panthers, whom the Raiders play Week 1 at Bank America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Here are five key developments to emerge from training camp:
The Raiders continued bolstering their defense ahead of the team’s first season in Las Vegas.
Las Vegas acquired linebacker Raekwon McMillan and a 2021 fifth-round draft pick from the Miami Dolphins for a 2021 fourth-round pick, the team announced Saturday.
We have traded a 2021 fourth-round pick to Miami for LB Raekwon McMillan and a 2021 fifth-round pick.
— Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) August 29, 2020
ESPN’s Adam Schefter and The Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson were first to report news of the trade.
Compensation update: Raiders are trading a 2021 fourth-round pick to Miami for Dolphins’ linebacker Raekwon McMillan and a 2021 fifth-round pick, per source. Good value for Raiders, but McMillan is in the last year of his deal. https://t.co/kkWF5UHccR
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 29, 2020
McMillan is in the final year of his rookie contract after being a second-round pick of the Dolphins in 2017. McMillan started all but one of his 29 career NFL games in Miami, including 12 last season before going down in Week 15 with a hamstring injury, which led to him being placed on injured reserve.
Over his career, McMillan has 177 combined tackles, two forced fumbles and two pass deflections. After signing Cory Littleton and Nick Kwiatkowski this offseason in free agency, general manager Mike Mayock seems inclined on trotting out a brand new group of starting linebackers in 2020.
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It was a difficult season for Raiders wide receiver Zay Jones.
Joining the team midway through last season. Trying to establish a rapport with quarterback Derek Carr.
“Not really knowing anybody,” Jones said Wednesday after practice.
“Those conversations that you would usually have in the offseason didn’t take place for me. So I was kind of playing catch-up all (of last) season.”