AP File Photo: Oakland Raiders tackle Donald Penn during an NFL football team activity Tuesday, May 23, 2017, in Alameda, Calif. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
By Joe Hawkes-Beamon
Sports Radio Service Writer
NAPA–There will be a noticeable absence when the Raiders open up training camp Saturday and its a player that they can’t afford to be without.
Left tackle Donald Penn is not expected to report for Oakland’s first practice as he seeks a new contract from the organization. Penn is set to make $7 million this season, the final year of a two-year $11.9 million deal with Oakland.
News of Penn’s intentions of skipping training camp was first reported by NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport via Twitter.
But at 34-years-old, Penn knows that Father Time is rapidly approaching and wants to get one more big-money contract before he calls it a career. Rapoport noted that Penn is reportedly looking to be paid “among the top-10 left tackles in the league.”
Penn has proven to be extremely durable throughout his 10-year career, starting all 16 games the last nine seasons including 48 straight for Oakland the last three seasons. According to ESPN Stats and Information, Penn allowed just 28 quarterback pressures in 676 pass-blocking snaps last season and giving up just one sack, the sack that snapped the fibula of franchise quarterback Derek Carr on Christmas Eve.
The 6-foot-5, 305-pound Penn is a brick wall that protects Carr and saw the Raiders dish out lucrative contracts along the offensive line in recent years, inking center Rodney Hudson and right tackle Kelechi Osemele to massive deals.
This past offseason, Oakland rewarded right guard Gabe Jackson with a five-year, $56 million contract extension.
In a phone call with NFL Network’s Willie McGinest on Friday, the two-time Pro Bowler expressed his deserving of a new contract.
“He wants to probably be paid in the top-10. He’s not looking to be the highest paid, the top-5 highest paid. He just wants the respect of what he’s done on the field,” McGinest said during Friday’s addition of NFL Total Access. “Stop looking at his age, he’s like, don’t mention his age, look at my production and what I’ve done. And if I’m in the top-10, then I can probably be comfortable with that.”
Oakland enters the 2017 season with Super Bowl aspirations and look to be one of the league’s top offenses once again, with the additions of running back and hometown product Marshawn Lynch (came out of retirement) and tight end Jared Cook (signed in free agency), to go along with Carr and wide receivers Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper.
Information from the NFL Network was used in this report.