Oakland Raiders: The Roles of Each of the Team’s Rookie Players

With NFL owners and players once again negotiating a deal to end the lockout, it seems fairly safe to say there will be football this upcoming season.

The rookies have been affected by the lockout the most. With the lockout in place, they haven’t signed contracts or attended organized team activities (OTAs), and many of them don’t have playbooks. The lockout will make it harder for rookies to make an impact.

With that being said, rookies will still be expected to make contributions to their teams no matter their role. Here are the roles the Oakland Raiders’ rookies will fill.


Stefen Wisniewski, OL, Penn State: Round 2, Pick 16 (48th overall)

Wisniewski is a versatile lineman who played both guard and center at Penn State. The Raiders drafted Wisniewski to play center. Raiders coach Hue Jackson already named Wisniewski the starting center, replacing Samson Satele at the position.


Demarcus Van Dyke, DB, Miami (Fla.): Round 3, Pick 17 (81st overall)

Van Dyke could play a huge role this season. The Raiders are expected to lose one of the game's top cornerbacks, Nnamdi Asomugha, to free agency. This loss leaves a huge hole in the secondary.

Van Dyke could play himself into the third cornerback position in Oakland. The Raiders primarily play man-to-man in the secondary which is what Van Dyke mostly played at Miami. Look for Stanford Routt and Chris Johnson to start at corner with Van Dyke getting playing significant time in the nickel and dime packages.


Joseph Barksdale, OL, LSU: Round 3, Pick 28 (92nd overall)

Barksdale played both tackle positions at LSU but mostly played on the right side. Like Wisniewski, he gives the Raiders more depth on the offensive line. Barksdale will push Mario Henderson for the starting job at right tackle. The longer the lockout lasts, however, the harder it’ll...

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