Oakland Raiders Rumors: Amari Cooper Starter For Derek Carr, Trent Richardson, Latavius Murray, Clive Walford Start With Strong Training Camp?

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Jun 23, 2015 04:43 PM EDT
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Oakland Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper l
Oakland Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper lines up in pass catching drills at rookie minicamp practice at the team facility in Alameda, California on Friday, May 8, 2015."

The Oakland Raiders have finished up offseason workouts and now they are headed towards training camp and the team has Derek Carr back healthy after dealing with an injury and he should have a strong offense to work with in camp, as Amari Cooper should be starter, while players Trent Richardson, Clive Walford and Latavius Murray should push to contribute.

The Raiders had Carr dealing with a finger injury, but he was able to return for minicamp earlier in the month. According to Pro Football Talk, Carr had no issues throwing once he came back and he is set to be healthy for training camp. Carr had a solid season last year as a rookie and now the Raiders are expecting more development from him. The team added Michael Crabtree and Trent Richardson in free agency, while rookies like Amari Cooper and Clive Walford are coming in with high expectations.

According to ESPN reporter Bill Williamson, Cooper is likely going to start for Carr on offense right away as long as there are no setbacks in training camp. Cooper is coming out of college after having a monster season and the Raiders think that he can translate to the NFL right away. Williamson also wrote that he thinks that Walford and Mario Edwards could start as rookies after having strong camp workouts this offseason.

Walford is coming in behind Michael Rivera and while the Raiders like Rivera and his athletic ability, he is not as big as Walford. Williamson reported in camp that the Raiders were impressed with Walford's blocking ability and that could get him onto the field on a more consistent basis. The team wants to use both Walford and Rivera as a safety valve for Carr, as they should give him a nice outlet in short yardage situations and in the middle of the field.

Cooper comes in after making 127 catches for 1727 yards and 16 touchdowns last season and he should be first on the depth chart ahead of Crabtree. Latavius Murray and Trent Richardson are going to be battling to start on the depth chart and Williamson predicts that Murray will get the nod first. Murray has been looking good in offseason workouts and Richardson is coming in after two very disappointing seasons with the Indianapolis Colts.

Murray comes in after showing some flashes last season with 424 yards on just 82 carries and he could get chances with the first team offense in training camp. Carr and the Raiders need a more consistent rushing game and both Murray and Richardson will try and replace Darren McFadden, who the team let go in free agency. The Raiders have a new head coach in Jack Del Rio and he said that he expects improvement on the offensive side of the ball. 

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