Oakland Raiders fans may see the familiar number 21 roaming the secondary at the Oakland Coliseum whent he Raiders host the Denver Broncos this weekend. Except, this time, the man wearing number 21 will not be Nnamdi Asomugha, but rather, corner back Lito Sheppard.
Sheppard was signed to the Raiders roster during the pre-season, however, the Raiders cut him before the season started, opting instead to go with a rather young and shallow depth at the corner position. Now, with injuries to Chris Johnson and rookie Chimdi Checkwa, the Raiders are looking to add some depth to the already depleted position and have re-signed Sheppard.
Sheppard is a former pro bowl coner back who has spent time with the Minnesota Vikings, the New York Jets and the Philidelphia Eagles. While he was a very good corner for a while, most agree that he is clearly past his prime. In addition, the fact that he had not yet signed with an NFL team hints that he might be past his time in the NFL.
That, however, does not seem to bother the Raiders who are likely more concerned with getting someone who can fill in right away if necessary. Sheppard has already learned a little bit of the playbook due to the time he spent with the Raiders in the pre-season, and has played a good amount of man coverage during his career in the NFL. I do not expect him to get much playing time, but its never a bad thing to have an experienced vet on your team for depth purposes.