Training camp outlook: Center

One story in a series, looking at position breakdowns for the Oakland Raiders, who arrive for training camp in Napa, CA. Today – a look at centers:

In the history of the Raiders franchise, Oakland or Los Angeles, centers have been known to change very little – Jim Otto, Dave Dalby, Don Mosebar and Barret Robbins. Adam Treu, who started 16 games at center last season, had always filled in capably at center for Robbins when he was either injury or had his much-publicized personal issues.

Treu is the longest tenured member of the Oakland Raiders with nine years of experience. Despite starting 16 games for the first time in his career, Treu is likely headed for his more customary role of longsnapper and backup center.

The Raiders drafted Jake Grove in the second round last season and started him at guard for the last eight games of the season. While Grove shined at guard and Treu was serviceable at center, Grove is a center by trade.

Under Jon Gruden and later Bill Callahan, the Raiders were reluctant to have Treu perform double-duty in being both a longsnapper and center. Norv Turner, however, had no problem doing such.

One area where Grove will have to show improvement in training camp is snapping the ball in the shotgun formation, something the Raiders use much more under Turner. Grove struggled in that capacity last year in training camp.

Vince D'Adamo can be reached at vdad7@yahoo.com


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