Recently we looked at the competition at right guard between Khalif Barnes and rookie Jon Feliciano. But there is one more name you can add to that competition - J'Marcus Webb.
Raiders position battle: Barnes vs Feliciano
As the Raiders head into their third OTA session this week, there is a battle being waged at the right guard position.
Webb came over from the Vikings this offseason. He has played tackle his entire career, but the Raiders have made him this year's version of Austin Howard - the former right tackle who the Raiders signed to play right guard last season -- with Howard moving to right tackle.
"I don't think he played guard in a game for him before, but he's playing guard for us," said Jack Del Rio. "He's been playing guard all spring for us. He's really playing four spots. He's playing both guards and both tackles. We'll find out how that fits, but he's one of the guys that's over there competing on that right side."
As Del Rio pointed out, the 6-7, 333-pound Webb has been seeing a lot of work at guard as well as tackle. In Tuesday's minicamp practice he was working exclusively with the first team offense at right guard, where previously Khalif Barnes was taking the bulk of the snaps, with Feliciano behind him.
Barnes meanwhile was lining up at left tackle behind starter, Donald Penn. Ideally, Barnes would be available as a swing tackle as he is able to fill in at all positions but center. As it turns out, the team is looking at Webb in much the same way. Showing versatility is key for many of these offensive linemen.
"We're going to need to have the ability to be versatile and have utility players that can do more than one job," said Del Rio. "You work this time of year, you can have a second and even a third group of offensive linemen or defensive linemen go in, and we know come fall, we won't have all those guys up and active, so you have to have cross-training. You have to be able to play multiple roles. You have to have a backup who can swing at multiple spots and all those things. So that's all part of the preparation. At this point, we're just trying to first settle on the best five. So yeah, we feel like the right side is a place where there is some competition taking place."
It will be interesting to note whether Webb remains as the first team right guard throughout their three-day minicamp this week or if they shuffle guys around. Then by the time training camp rolls around, we should get a clear idea of who is the frontrunner for the job come the regular season.