As the Raiders prepare for their preseason opener, the team’s first-round draft pick, Gareon Conley has been dominating the headlines.
The Oakland Raiders’ 2017 first round draft pick Gareon Conley continues to steal off-the-field related headlines. So much, in fact, that Raider Nation began to worry when Conley was signed to a team contract under his allotted rookie deal before absolving a lingering court matter.
After Conley was successfully acquitted of a rape investigation, Raider’s general manager Reggie McKenzie was commended for conducting the proper research validating drafting Conley at number 24 overall this past April. Conley was widely considered a
“Top 10” draft pick before being victimized by a timely false rape accusation. The team’s urgency to get the talented rookie into camp has been in question since his acquittal.
“The past few months have been extremely trying for me and my family. Although I was the target of malicious and false accusations, I do realize however that I could’ve exercised better judgment and that there are still lessons for me to take away and grow from. I look forward to earning my role with the Raiders and hopefully rewarding them for believing in me.” – Gareon Conley
It is no secret that there’s desperation for improvement at corner for the Raiders, with that said, Conley’s charges were dropped July 31st so why all the noise to get him onto the field? Since the start of training camp, it was McKenzie who said Conley was out due to “shin splints.” Moreover, now, Conley chimed in via Twitter regarding the matter at hand.
“Now I got shin splints lol”
– Gareon Conley via Twitter @g_gconley8 8/10/17, 2:26 PM
Conley has since deleted the Tweets, and seemingly now we have another pending accusation to be dismissed between McKenzie and Conley, so this begs the question, what is going on?
Perhaps Conley is undergoing an injury consultation for something discovered from his team physical? We can only theorize at this point, but regardless, this is a communication breakdown between GM and player that led to Conley showing some immaturity by taking to social media. Being on the physically unable to perform list does not help the team get better obviously, but neither does a player that’s mocking the disclosure of his injury by the man who drafted him. Hopefully, this is a lesson learned for all involved.
I would not expect this confusing situation to end any sooner than that of Donald Penn’s contractual hold-out. Between the two players, these are distractions that can take a toll on the teams’ performance standards heading into Week 1 vs. the Tennessee Titans. Don’t expect McKenzie to address the topic until after the team returns from Arizona next week and settles into camp again. Then the clock begins to tick as McKenzie or “Master Splinter” if you will, tries to clean-up the disparity of a slightly embarrassing injury disclosure blunder.