Training camp has been well underway for the Las Vegas Raiders but there’s been one notable absence for the team. Since the media has been able to view practices, Pro Bowl right tackle Trent Brown has not been on the field. That changed on Wednesday as the Raiders revealed that the big man was back.
Locked in 🔒 pic.twitter.com/Ish9IgLnm6
— Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) August 26, 2020
There was perhaps no player happier to see the dominant offensive lineman back than quarterback Derek Carr.
He's back :) https://t.co/JeamvZSrPM
— Derek Carr (@derekcarrqb) August 26, 2020
The Raiders have played coy with why Brown hasn’t been practicing. There’s been no indication that he suffered a serious injury and his return to the field is a good sign. Brown had to miss a number of games last season due to injury. When healthy he proved to be one of the best offensive linemen in the game. The Raiders need him healthy if they’re going to make the playoffs this year.
Raiders Were Getting ‘Frustrated’ With Brown’s Absence
The Raiders didn’t pay Brown a ridiculous amount of money to not play. In fact, he’s got the biggest cap hit on the entire roster, according to Sportrac.com. If he was injured, it’s not his fault. By most accounts, Brown has been putting in a lot of work this offseason. Regardless, the Raiders were starting to get frustrated with his absence, per The Athletic’s Vic Tafur:
The offensive line is back intact. Though coaches are getting a little frustrated that right tackle Trent Brown is not practicing yet (he is working with trainers and posted Instagram videos from practice at the new stadium last Friday) — and seems poised to open up some big holes for Josh Jacobs, Jalen Richard and Alec Ingold.
Fortunately, he’s back now and the Raiders coaches can breathe a sigh of relief. Brown’s will be something to watch as the season starts. He’s had trouble staying consistently healthy over the course of a full season. He’s worth all the money the team is paying him when he’s healthy, but if he’s not playing, the deal is no longer very good for the Raiders.
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David Sharpe Losing the Backup Job?
Last year when Brown was out, David Sharpe started and actually played pretty well, He fared much better than Brandon Parker. However, it sounds like he’s losing his backup job. According to Vic Tafur, there’s a veteran the team brought in this offseason that’s been getting Brown’s reps:
The former fourth-round draft pick was the swing tackle last season and most expected Sharpe to have a similar role on the bench this season. But most people didn’t notice that the Raiders signed 11th-year veteran Sam Young, and Young stepped in at right tackle when Trent Brown missed the first two weeks of camp. (Brown was working with trainers and made his practice debut on Wednesday.)
Young is an NFL journeyman but the Raiders clearly like him enough to trust him with a starting spot if Brown can’t go. That’s not a good sign for Sharpe, who looked like he had a bright future ahead of him.
Follow Austin Boyd on Twitter: @austincjboyd