Rookie Raider's "No Holdout" Promise Looking Shaky

By Joe Kukura
|  Wednesday, Jul 28, 2010  |  Updated 1:00 PM PDT
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Rolando McClain might be holding out yet.

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Raider Nation whooped it up in approval when No. 1 pick Rolando McClain promised in June that there was no way he would hold out of Oakland Raiders training camp.

"I’m not looking to sit out," McClain said at the time. "In order to play for the team, I need to be in training camp."

Training camp opened for rookies Tuesday. Guess what? McClain wasn't there.

Every other 2010 Raiders draft pick reported for camp, signed and soaked up the playbook. Even five-time Pro Bowler Richard Seymour showed up early to help establish leadership and cohesion on the Raiders' D.

But McClain was not present. The Raiders and McClain's agent, Pat Dye, Jr., are still in negotiations and hope to have it done by Thursday, the San Jose Mercury News reports.

It may sound like I'm splitting hairs. Technically speaking, it's not a holdout until Thursday morning when the Raiders' first full team practice gets underway.

And the sessions McClain is missing Wednesday are, well, probably a little ticky-tack. Jerry McDonald's Oakland Tribune Raiders blog lists among the Wednesday sessions "Life skills meeting," "Uniform inspector meeting," and "Snack."

Not exactly the stuff on which teams win multiple Super Bowls.

But the guy said he'd be in training camp regardless of contract situation. Rookie training camp sessions are under way. McClain is a rookie, and he's not in attendance.

There are no signs that his negotiations are contentious. But less than 24 hours before it would be technically a holdout, there are no signs of progress either.

And training camp holdouts have been a sore point for this franchise in recent years, with both JaMarcus Russell (2007) and Darrius Heyward-Bey (2009) getting their Raiders careers off to poor starts after holdout situations.

Should we really be worried about another holdout? We'll know by Thursday morning.

Joe Kukura is a freelance writer who really, sincerely hopes that McClain signs by Thursday morning and makes me look stupid for having written this article.

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