Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

June 25, 2008
Friends worried about Walker away from the field

If you haven't already, give Bill Williamson's story about Javon Walker a read. Williamson covered the Broncos before joining ESPN and has some insight into Walker that local beat writers have yet to gain in limited offseason access.

The article indicates the Raiders not only signed a wide receiver that has a big heart, but also someone that is struggling to deal with the murder of teammate Darrent Williams, Jan. 1, 2007.

Most of us can only imagine what it's like to have a friend die in our arms after being shot, and I won't play psychiatrist and pretend to know what Walker's thinking.

But the Raiders should be concerned. Being robbed, beaten and left on the street has to be a traumatic experience. Coupled with Williams' death, there's no way of knowing where Walker's mind will be next month during training camp.

He'll be asked about both incidents. If Walker chooses to discuss them, he'll have to rehash things he'd like to forget.

I couldn't imagine discussing the loss of a friend and then going to work as if I didn't talk about that loss.

Who cares whether the opposing secondary is in man or zone coverage with those kind of emotions?

It's cliché for teams to say they're worried about the person first, not the football player. Those better not be hollow words from the Raiders or they might not have much of a football player this fall.

***
The Raiders signed rookie free agent QB Sam Keller and released rookie QB Erik Meyer today.

Keller took part in the Raiders' rookie camp in May.

Keller is a Bay Area native that began his college career at Arizona State before finishing up at Nebraska under former Raiders coach Bill Callahan.

Keller joins Jeff Otis as a "camp arm" and if he's impressive, could earn a spot on the practice squad.

Earning a roster spot would mean the Raiders would have ditched Andrew Walter or Marques Tuiasosopo, which doesn't look likely to happen.

Tuiasosopo is probably a better fit in Lane Kiffin's offense than Walter. But all the chatter last season was Al Davis still believes Walter can be a good quarterback.

And Davis is a firm believer in having two good quarterbacks.

Walter wouldn't mind a chance to be traded to a team that would give him a chance to start. But at this time of year, those opportunities aren't out there.

--Jason Jones


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About Raiders Blog and Q&A

Matt Kawahara was born in Sacramento and attended McClatchy High School and UC Berkeley, where he wrote for the independent student paper The Daily Californian. He graduated from Cal in 2010 and started at The Sacramento Bee as a summer intern. He joined The Bee's sports staff in fall 2011.

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