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Jermaine Gresham recovered from back injury, Raiders still interested?

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Even before free agency opened last March, among the first reported interest the Raiders had was former Bengals tight end, Jermaine Gresham. He visited the team facility and spent a couple of days in the Oakland area with no deal coming to pass. In his physical in Alameda, he was found to have a back injury that required surgery and it was the reason he became the only reported free agent visit the Raiders had that didn't result in a deal.

Immediately following the news of his back injury and ensuing surgery, the Raiders made it clear they would remain interested if and when Gresham recovered.

"He's still on my board," Reggie McKenzie said at the time. "We'll see how he feels and how he rehabs and all that. Going forward, it will be more about how he wants to navigate through this."

Now four months since his March 19 surgery, Gresham is recovered and has begun making free agent visits just in time for training camp. His first scheduled visit will be Tuesday with the Arizona Cardinals, according to's Ian Rapoport. Also among those Rapoport says are interested are the Raiders and Saints.

What level of interest the Raiders have or even if the report of interest is simply going back to their previous interest is unknown.

Since they flirted with signing Gresham, the Raiders had Clive Walford fall into their laps in the third round of the draft. Walford was instantly inserted as the number one tight end on the team.

At very least Gresham -- a 2-time Pro Bowler -- would have made for a nice insurance policy should the Raiders not be able to draft a top tier tight end prospect like Walford. Now that they have, Gresham would join an already fairly good looking group which also includes free agent addition Lee Smith and two-year starter, Mychal Rivera.

There is no question the Raiders can afford to bring on Gresham. They are still sitting with over $20 million in cap space.