The Oakland Raiders selected cornerback Chimdi Chekwa in the fourth round of the 2011 NFL Draft, only one round after selecting cornerback Demarcus Van Dyke.
So far, because of injuries, the Raiders have not been able to see much of Chekwa on the field. However, despite that, coach Hue Jackson may already have a plan for Chekwa. Reports have come out that Chekwa has been splitting time in practice between cornerback and safety.
However, unlike safety’s Tyvon Branch and Michael Huff, who have also been splitting time between safety and cornerback, Chekwa could be moved to safety permanently.
For Huff and Branch, the practice at both positions is likely because the Raiders will be trying out a number of options as their nickel corner. Rookie Demarcus Van Dyke has shown that he is not ready to be the Raiders full time nickelback, so Jackson and his coaching staff are exploring other options.
For Chekwa, the move appears to have more to do with where the Raiders think he will fit best. Sure, there are injury issues at the safety position with Hiram Eugene and Mike Mitchell, but it wouldn’t make sense to move a player from one unit in need of help (cornerbacks) to another in need of help (safety) unless there were long term goals in mind.
It is highly unlikely that Chekwa will see much playing time his rookie season regardless of which position the Raiders decide to place him at. Hopefully, the move is a sign that Chekwa will one day be able to excel at the safety position, as opposed to a sign that the Raiders have already given up hope on him as a cornerback.