Ex-Packers, Colts LB Signs With Raiders, Shares Reaction: ‘I Shed a Tear or 2’

curtis bolton

Getty New Las Vegas Raiders LB Curtis Bolton.

It’s early in training camp but the Las Vegas Raiders have already dealt with major injuries to two linebackers. Kyler Fackrell is done for the year after the team put him on the Reserve/Injured List. Micah Kiser also got hurt and had to be carted off the practice field. His status isn’t looking great.

The Raiders have decided to address the position as injuries pile up. The team signed veteran linebacker Curtis Bolton to the roster, per Tashan Reed of The Athletic.

Bolton came into the NFL as an undrafted in 2019 of the Green Bay Packers but never played a game with them. In fact, he didn’t play his first game until last season with the Detroit Lions. In five games, he made three combined tackles with all of his snaps coming on special teams. He’s also spent time with the Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts and San Francisco 49ers but didn’t see regular game action with any of them.

Notably, Bolton grew up a fan of the Raiders, and his late father was a die-hard fan of the team. Upon signing with Las Vegas, Bolton couldn’t hold back tears.

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Chandler Jones Missing From Practice

The Raiders have dodged having injury issues to their top players but there could be a situation brewing. One of the biggest additions the team made this offseason was the signing of four-time Pro Bowler Chandler Jones. He’s been one of the best pass rushers in the NFL for a decade and should bring a lot to an ascending young Raiders team.

That said, Jones has missed four straight practices, which is cause for concern. According to James Palmer, the Raiders aren’t concerned about it yet but it is a situation to watch.

Jones is a tested veteran and he knows the new coaching staff well from his time with the New England Patriots. The learning curve is a lot less steep for him compared to other players. There’s no reason to beat a veteran into the ground this long before games are actually played. It’s something to keep an eye on but there doesn’t appear to be anything seriously wrong with Jones.

Denzel Perryman Ranked Among Best NFL LBs

The early injuries to Raiders linebackers are concerning but the team is fortunate to still have the top guys. Denzel Perryman made his first Pro Bowl last season and figures to be one of the most important parts of the defense. ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler recently surveyed the NFL to rank the best linebackers in the league. While Perryman wasn’t ranked in the top 10, he did get rave reviews and was an honorable mention.

“He’s always been super instinctive. Not great against the pass but can do everything else,” an AFC scout said.

Perryman is entering a contract year and needs to prove that last season wasn’t a fluke. If he can do that, he could be looking at a handsome payday once the season ends.

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