The march to the season continues. As does the march to training camp which starts this week. We’re at 47 days until the season opener. You know what that means — time to look at the guy wearing number 47.
LB/DE James Cowser
Undrafted in 2016, Cowser stepped up big time in the offseason. He quickly showed why many projections had him potentially being drafted in the midrounds. He was the FCS Defensive Player of the Year and holds the career record for sacks (42.5) and tackles for loss (80). He damn well should’ve been drafted.
But the rest of the NFL’s loss is the Raiders’ gain. That’s not to say he is a lock to be an impact player on the Raiders this season. Last year he was sent to injured reserve, waived with an injury settlement, re-signed to the practice squad, and then called to the active roster in week 11. Over the final 6 games, he had 1.0 sack and 8 combined tackles.
Unfortunately for him, he plays behind Khalil Mack, so he isn’t likely to see a lot of playing time anytime soon. But it’s nice to have him for those Nascar packages and such to add another pass rusher and put a little extra pressure on the quarterback.
Who wore it best: RB Tyrone Wheatley
This former first round pick was given up for dead by the New York Giants. The Raiders dusted him off and made him their ground and pound back in Jon Gruden's offense. The Raiders had a resurgence of their own during Wheatley's time in Oakland. He ran for over 1000 yards in 2000 to help the Raiders reach the AFC Championship game. He was the smash to Charlie Garner's dash in the Raiders' Super Bowl season in 2002.
Over six seasons with the team, he sits eighth in team history with 3682 rushing yards and fourth in rushing touchdowns with 34. He also added 140 yards and one touchdowns in 7 playoff game appearances.