Most of the starting jobs for the Raiders have been all but locked up since OTAs and minicamps, but that doesn’t mean there’s no training camp roster drama this year. There are plenty of battles being waged to land jobs backing up the established veterans. The Raiders lack experienced depth at a number of key positions, especially linebacker, and that makes for some wide-open battles for the final spots on the 53-man roster.
Stock rising: Wide receiver Rod Streater, an undrafted rookie from Temple, showed Monday night that he’s more than just a training-camp star. He caught six passes for 66 yards and now looks like a near lock to make the roster. DT Dominique Hamilton, an undrafted rookie from Missouri, had three tackles and a sack against Dallas. He’s fighting for one of the final backup jobs on the defensive line.
Stock falling: With injuries keeping Taiwan Jones and Mike Goodson on the sidelines, fourth-string running back Lonyae Miller got 15 carries against the Cowboys, but he gained just 39 yards and averaged only 2.6 yards per carry. He needed a huge night to improve his chances for survival.
QB -- In: (3) Carson Palmer, Matt Leinart, Terrelle Pryor. Out: Kyle Newhall-Caballero. Analysis: Palmer’s the starter, Leinart’s the backup and Pryor’s the No. 3 QB. Pryor struggled in his debut Monday night, but Leinart looked sharp. Newhall-Caballero didn’t get off the bench. Only an injury would shake things up at this position.
RB -- In: (5) Darren McFadden, Taiwan Jones, Mike Goodson, Marcel Reece (FB), Owen Schmitt (FB). Out: Lonyae Miller, Manase Tonga (FB), Rashawn Jackson (FB). Analysis: Once they recover from injuries, Jones and Goodson will resume their battle to become McFadden’s primary backup. Both are locks to make the team, as is Marcel Reece, a converted wide receiver with big-play ability that’s rare for a fullback. Schmitt, who played for offensive coordinator Greg Knapp in Seattle, should survive because of his skills as a lead blocker. Everyone else is a long shot, although Tonga did make three starts last year.
WR -- In: (6) Darrius Heyward-Bey, Denarius Moore, Jacoby Ford, Rod Streater, Juron Criner, Eddie McGee. Out: Derek Carrier, Brandon Carswell, Thomas Mayo, Travionte Session, Duke Calhoun (IR), DeAundre Muhammad . Analysis: Heyward-Bey, Moore and Ford, who’s also the top kick and punt returner, are locks. Streater is approaching that category. The Raiders spent a fifth-round pick on Criner, a big-bodied possession receiver, who slipped in the draft. He looks like a keeper. McGee, a member of the practice squad last year, has been slowed by a hamstring injury. His spot on the roster is far from secure, but Moore’s lingering hamstring problems could convince the Raiders to keep six WRs.
TE -- In: (3) Brandon Myers, Richard Gordon, David Ausberry. Out: Kyle Efaw, Tory Humphrey. Analysis: The Raiders released starting tight end Kevin Boss during the offseason in a cost-cutting move, leaving the job wide open, with Myers, Gordon and Ausberry as the main candidates. All three should make the team, although Humphrey has 31 games of NFL experience and could move up if someone falters. Myers took the early lead in the race for the starting job but suffered a shoulder injury in practice last week and missed the exhibition opener against Dallas. Gordon is the best blocker in the bunch and has improved as a receiver. He’s putting the most heat on Myers.
OL -- In: (8) Jared Veldheer, Khalif Barnes, Mike Brisiel, Cooper Carlisle, Stefen Wisniewski, Joe Barksdale, Tony Bergstrom, Alex Parsons. Out: Zach Hurd, Ed Wang, Nick Howell, Colin Miller, Lucas Nix, Kevin Haslam, Dan Knapp. Analysis: The starting five -- LT Veldheer, RT Barnes, RG Brisiel, LG Carlisle and C Wisniewski -- have been in place since the start of OTAs. They’re locks to make the team, as are Barksdale, a second-year tackle, and rookie G Bergstrom, a third-round pick and the Raiders’ top choice in the draft. The Raiders need someone to back up Wisniewski. Parsons, who can also play guard, is the likely choice after spending two years on the practice squad. If the Raiders decide they need more depth at tackle, either Hurd or Wang could survive. Hurd was on the practice squad last year. Wang played six games for Buffalo in 2010 but missed last year with a thumb injury.
DL -- In: (9) Richard Seymour, Tommy Kelly, Matt Shaughnessy, Lamarr Houston, Dave Tollefson, Desmond Bryant, Jack Crawford, Christo Bilukidi, Jamie Cumbie. Out: Dominique Hamilton, Mason Brodine, Wayne Dorsey, Hall Davis. Analysis: This is the deepest position on the team, and the competition will be fierce for the final few spots. DT Seymour, DT Kelly, DE Shaughnessy and DE Houston – the starting foursome – are locks. So are Tollefson, a former Giant, and Bryant. The Raiders spent draft choices for DE Crawford and DT Bilikudi, which gives them an edge. DTs Cumbie, who spent last year on the practice squad, and Hamilton, an undrafted rookie from Missouri, could battle for the final backup spot.
LB -- In: (7) Rolando McClain, Philip Wheeler, Aaron Curry, Miles Burris, Travis Goethel, Carl Ihenacho, Nathan Stupar. Out: Kaelin Burnett, Chad Kilgore, Mario Kurn (IR). Analysis: The Raiders have less depth and more questions at linebacker than at any other position. Starting weak-side linebacker Aaron Curry is on the PUP list with injuries to both knees, and it’s unclear when he’ll be cleared to practice. Rookie Miles Burris, a fourth-round pick from San Diego State, started for Curry against Dallas and did a decent job. He’s a lock to make the roster, as are starters McClain and Wheeler. The Raiders have next to no experienced depth and could be searching the waiver wires for help. Goethel, who missed all of last season with a knee injury, is McClain’s top backup in the middle, and Ihenacho has impressed at times on the outside, behind Wheeler. The Raiders spent a seventh-round pick on Stupar, a middle linebacker, but if Curry’s injuries linger, the door could open for Burnett, an outside linebacker who caught coach Dennis Allen’s eye during OTAs.
DB -- In: (9) Ron Bartell, Shawntae Spencer, Michael Huff, Tyvon Branch, Matt Giordano, DeMarcus Van Dyke, Mike Mitchell, Pat Lee, Chimdi Chekwa. Out: Bryan McCann, Curtis Taylor, Brandon Underwoood, Conroy Black, Aaron Henry, Chaz Powell, Terrail Lambert Analysis: This is another deep group, and there could be some fierce battles for the final few spots. CBs Bartell and Spencer, FS Huff and SS Branch are locks. Backup safeties Giordano, who starts in the nickel, and Mitchell, who’s having a strong camp, appear to be safe, too. Second-year CB Van Dyke was having a good camp until faltering Monday night against the Cowboys, but he should make the roster. CB Lee, a free-agent pickup from Green Bay, moved from third to second string last week. He has a Super Bowl ring and is solid on special teams. That should be enough to earn him a job. Chekwa, a fourth-round pick last year, is on the bubble.
Special teams -- In: (3) K Sebastian Janikowski, P Shane Lechler, LS Jon Condo. Out: Marquette King, Eddy Carmona. Analysis: Janikowski and Lechler and Condo are roster locks. The only way this would change is if Lechler’s knee injury is more serious than believed. He has yet to be cleared for practice. King has a big leg but lacks consistency.
Follow Raiders reporter Eric Gilmore on Twitter: @CBSSportsNFLOAK.