Five Oakland Raiders on the roster fringe

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December 21, 2014; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins (85) celebrates after a catch against Buffalo Bills free safety Aaron Williams (23) during the first quarter at Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kenbrell Thompkins

The Oakland Raiders’ receiving corps has rebounded from injury and been revamped through the NFL draft and free agency. Competition for the No. 2 receiver spot is clearly between incumbent Rod Streater and former San Francisco 49er Michael Crabtree, but the final two or three roster spots left behind the top three (Amari Cooper, Streater and Crabtree) are still up for the taking.

Third-year receiver Kenbrell Thompkins is currently looking like the odd man out in the wide receiver competition, as there are too many younger receiving talents on the roster for him to find room on the roster.

UDFA’s Austin Willis and Josh Harper will most likely not end up making the final roster, but it is still possible that one of the two secure a roster spot as a punt returner. But, as I mentioned earlier, UDFA’s will be kept off of this list.

Andre Holmes, former 2011 Undrafted Free Agent, has had his ups and downs over the course of his three-year career in the NFL, but he still has a lot of potential as a young player at 6’4″, 210 pounds. Holmes had a career year in 2014, as he led Oakland in yards with 47 receptions for 693 yards and four touchdowns.

Former San Diego State wide receiver Brice Butler has flashed during the regular season, and is still in the process of developing into a more consistent threat at the age of 25. Butler brought in 21 receptions in 15 games for 280 yards and two touchdowns in 2014.

Thompkins, playing in just 12 games with Oakland last season, had just 15 receptions for 37 yards. The former Cincinnati Bearcat has struggled in the NFL with creating separation during his routes, as he lacks elite burst off the line of scrimmage and the ideal quickness out of his cuts to get away from his defender.

With all of the competition at wide receiver, Oakland will have to make multiple tough decisions when it comes to cuts at that position, and Thompkins will most likely be included as one of them.

Next: Fringe Players: Chimdi Chekwa