Raiders sign Jordy Nelson

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As soon as Jordy Nelson was released by the Green Bay Packers, the Oakland Raiders put on a full-court press to acquire the former Pro Bowler.

His former position coach and coordinator in Green Bay, Edgar Bennett, and new Raiders coach Jon Gruden immediately called to bring him out for a free-agent visit. Quarterback Derek Carr picked him up at the airport and gave him a tour of the Bay Area.

Then the Raiders offered a two-year deal worth a reported $15 million that persuaded him to cancel his other scheduled visits and sign with Oakland.

The Raiders wasted little time Thursday attempting to rebuild under their first-year coach, releasing receiver Michael Crabtree to make room for Nelson; signing safety Marcus Gilchrist, linebacker Tahir Whitehead, running back Doug Martin and fullback Keith Smith; and finalizing deals with blocking tight ends Derek Carrier and Lee Smith that had been agreed to earlier in the week.

But the most high-profile move came at receiver, where Nelson hopes to bounce back from a down season and help Carr and the Raiders get back to the high level they produced at in 2016.

The 32-year-old Nelson struggled last season with 53 catches for 482 yards and six TDs, recording a career-low 9.1 yards per reception as Aaron Rodgers missed more than half the year with injuries.

Nelson had made the Pro Bowl in 2014 and won AP Comeback Player of the Year in 2016 when he led the league with 14 touchdown catches a year after missing the entire season with a right knee injury.

Nelson had four 1,000-yard seasons in Green Bay, including 1,519 yards on 98 catches in 2014. In 136 career games, he has 550 catches for 7,848 yards and 69 TDs.

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