As free agency approaches, part of the business the Raiders must do is to decide whether to retain their Exclusive Rights Free Agents. This year there were three players who were under that designation — wide receiver Seth Roberts, tight end Gabe Holmes, and offensive lineman Denver Kirkland.
We can confirm via league sources that the team has retained all three players on tenders. All are former undrafted free agents originally signed by the Raiders.
Roberts is the longest tenured of the three players, having worked his way up from practice squad player in 2014 to third receiver the past couple seasons behind starters Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree. He has posted 70 receptions for 877 yards and 10 touchdowns over his two seasons on the Raiders active roster.
Gabe Holmes also spent most of his 2015 rookie season on the team’s practice squad. They liked his potential in camp last year, but he was lost to injury and placed on injured reserve prior to the start of the season. With it looking like Mychal Rivera will be leaving as a free agent, Holmes will be in the mix for the third tight end spot behind Clive Walford and Lee Smith.
Kirkland was a rookie last season out of Arkansas. He saw his first game action in week five of the season due to injuries to starter. He appeared in 8 games last season as a guard and tackle eligible in jumbo packages. It’s a good role for him heading into this season.