Raiders Add Jonathan Cooper to Offensive Line - NBC Bay Area

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Raiders Add Jonathan Cooper to Offensive Line

Former first-round pick, a starter for several NFL teams, will compete for starting spot at left guard while adding depth

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    Jonathan Cooper (No. 64 with Browns in 2016) has signed with the Raiders as a free agent. (Photo by: Nick Cammett/Diamond Images/Getty Images)

    The Raiders have added another lineman to compete for the starting spot at left guard.

    Jonathan Cooper, a first-round pick of the Arizona Cardinals in 2014, has agreed to terms with Oakland.

    Cooper, 29, will provide another blocker to challenge for the left-guard position, along with Richie Incognito and Denzelle Good. Incognito has been suspended for the first two games of the regular season, so Good is penciled in as the starter there until Incognito returns – or if Cooper plays well enough to beat out both.

    Cooper was with the 49ers last offseason, but never appeared in a game with San Francisco, being released after the final exhibition game. Last season, Cooper started four games with Washington but missed most of the season with a torn biceps. In 2017, he was a full-time starter for Dallas (13 games). He previously played for Cleveland (2016) and Arizona (2014 and 2015).

    Although he was the seventh overall pick of the Cardinals in 2014 out of North Carolina, Cooper has not lived up to his billing, and has been hampered by injuries.

    Rob Goldberg of Bleacher Report wrote that, despite never playing a full season or blocking at an elite level, Cooper could be a valuable pickup for the Raiders.

    Wrote Goldberg: "Despite his setbacks, he is an experienced player who still has enough talent to provide depth on the offensive line."

    At 6-foot-2 and 308 pounds, Cooper has shown flashes of effectiveness. His best season may have been in 2017 with the Cowboys, where he played both guard and center and received praise for his run blocking, in particular.

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