The Raiders need a starting guard for their first two games of the season. So, they went out and got a former first round pick guard in Jonathan Cooper, whose career has been upended by injuries woes.
“I liked Cooper coming out of college,” Gruden said of Cooper. “He reminded me of a guy, McIntyre, he was a 285-pound guard that could really move. He was an early draft pick, he’s had some freak injuries. I know the guy that coached him last year in Washington. He started 13 games in Dallas where [assistant head coach/special teams coordinator] Rich Bisaccia was. He’s a natural left guard. Incognito is out for the first two games. We need a veteran to play next to Kolton. And ‘Coop’s’ done a good job. ‘Coop’s’ a good player if he can be healthy now.”
I sat down with Cooper at training camp this week to discuss his journey which has led him to his seventh NFL training camp with the Raiders.