Happy Monday, everyone. Raiders training camp takes the next level today as pads go on. More proof we are getting closer and closer to real football. To be specific, we’re 41 days from the Raiders season opener. One of the newest Raiders wears that number.
LB Brady Sheldon
After impressing coaches in May’s rookie minicamp, Sheldon was eventually signed a couple weeks ago.
The 6-5, 220-pound outside linebacker went undrafted out of Ferris State and earned a look in part because of some impressive drills. He ran a 4.52 40-yard dash at the Central Michigan pro day with a low of 4.47. That would have been a linebacker combine best if you remove Jabrill Peppers who figures to play safety at the NFL level.
His vertical of 37.0 would have been tied for second at the combine among linebackers and his 10’5” broad jump and 4.24 short shuttle would have both been top five.
Last season at Ferris State Sheldon recorded 54 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss and 3 pass breakups. He was named All-Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Honorable Mention.
Who wore it best: LB Phil Villapiano
A fiery vocal leader of the Raiders defense in the 70s. He was originally a second round pick by the Raiders in 1971 and spent the first nine years of his 13-year NFL career in Oakland. In that time he started in all but one game in which he appeared and outside of an injury shortened 1977 season, he never missed a game.
He was named to the Pro Bowl four straight seasons from 73-76. He was the hero of the Raiders' famous ‘Sea of Hands' game against the Dolphins in the 1974 playoffs as he had the game-clinching interception. He was also a major factor in the Raiders winning their first Super Bowl following the 1976 season.