By Kahlil Najar
It was revealed in a MRI on Tuesday that Oakland Raiders Left tackle Jared Veldheer partially tore his triceps at practice in Napa. Veldheer will undergo surgery to fix the tear however luckily it’s not a full tear which the Raiders had initially feared. If it had been a full tear Veldheer would have been out for the entire year but now it looks like he’ll be ready to play for most of the season.
If Veldheer’s injury was worse, it would have thrown a wrench into the system as the Raiders would have had to find someone to protect newly acquired Quarterback Matt Flynn as well as All-Pro but injury prone running back Darren McFadden – who with the addition of new offensive coordinator Greg Olson, is promised to get more time to run the ball and find his blockers which is where Veldheer excels.
With this scare, it points out that the Raiders do have some planning to do with finding a competent back up left tackle. As of right now they have Alex Barron who although being a first round draft pick when he entered the league in 2005, hasn’t played a game since 2010 when he started 11 games for the Dallas Cowboys. Then there’s second-round draft pick Menelik Watson from Florida State who can be groomed for the left tackle position but he has been out for almost all of camp with a calf injury.
Jared Veldheer has impressed all Raider fans ever since he came to the league in 2010 with his near perfect play and his durability as he’s started every game for the last two years. The injury couldn’t have come at a worse time for Veldheer as he’s in his contract year and since the Raiders will have a good amount of salary-cap room next year, it’s been speculated that he was a guaranteed signing before free agency. Hopefully Veldheer will be able to com back from this surgery and continue the form that all Raider fans are used to.