The top three wide receivers for the Raiders coming into this season were to be Amari Cooper, Jordy Nelson, and Martavis Bryant. As of this moment all three are gone.
Cooper was traded to the Cowboys a few weeks ago and Sunday the Raiders lost both Bryant and Nelson to injuries that could have them out some time.
“Martavis Bryant has a PCL injury in his knee. I don’t know the [severity] of the injury, but it doesn’t look like he’ll be available for some time,” said Jon Gruden. “Jordy Nelson has a knee [injury] that’s being further examined.”
“It’s tough, you know. Obviously with Amari gone and Martavis out, Jordy out, we’ll knock on Marcell Ateman’s door. Perhaps give him an opportunity to step forward and we’ll bring in some receivers to workout tomorrow and if we need to make a roster spot, we will.”
Ateman is the team’s 7th round rookie. He showed some promise in training camp before ultimately being waived and re-signed to the practice squad where he spent the first half of this season. He was called up a few weeks ago, but has yet to be active on game day.
Not being active doesn’t seem to be a determent for getting major playing time. After Cooper was traded, Brandon LaFell went from being inactive nearly every game and held without a catch all season to being Derek Carr’s number one target.
Others receivers on the roster currently are Seth Roberts and Dwayne Harris.
On the practice squad currently the team has wide receivers Saeed Blacknall and converted defensive back Rico Gafford, making them the most obvious options due to their familiarity with the offense.
Another potential option could include Keon Hatcher who impressed for the team in the preseason. He was waived after the season opener and signed onto the Packers’ practice squad.
Regardless of what happens, this wide receiver corps went from looking like it could be deep and talented this offseason to suddenly being the worst unit in the NFL. So, in that way, it accurately reflects the team as a whole.