SEATTLE -– Seth Roberts spent last season on the Raiders practice squad. The young receiver wasn’t among the receivers expected to make 2015’s regular-season roster, but he has forced his way into the conversation over the last six weeks.
Roberts has put together a strong body of work since the start of training camp, punctuated by an excellent performance in Thursday’s preseason finale against the host Seattle Seahawks.
Roberts had seven catches for 110 yards and a beautiful toe-tapping touchdown catch in the second quarter. He had one touchdown catch called back upon review, but cashed in on the next play with a catch validated by getting both feet in bounds near the right sideline. He also had a 39-yard reception with a solid run after the catch.
While nothing is certain until the Raiders release their final roster cuts on Saturday afternoon, it’s extremely likely Roberts worked his way onto the regular-season roster.
“Seth has done a great job with his opportunities,” Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio said. “The No. 1 things we wanted to do was created competition, create opportunities for guys to show what they’re capable of. I think he has taken full advantage of that. He has had a really nice camp.”
Roberts had to be on all the time, near perfect without the margin for error afforded to players of higher pedigree. He grinded through camp practices and performed well in games. It should be good enough to join a vastly improved receiver corps.
“Every day I came out ready to work,” Roberts said. “I did my best and tried to finish strong. I want to be a part of this team and I want to be a Raider. That’s why I go out and work hard.”
Roberts wanted to end the preseason on a positive note, and leave a solid impression while coaches make tough roster decisions this weekend.
Roberts saved his best game for last, and finished with 14 catches for 243 yards and a touchdown this preseason.
“It was really important to show well tonight,” Roberts said. “I feel like I took advantage of every opportunity I’ve had. I still have to get better at some things, but I did the best I could.”
Roberts was excited about the performance, but wasn’t overly sentimental about his first professional touchdown catch. He didn’t even save the ball.
“It was a nice moment, but it’s just the preseason,” Roberts said. “When I get the next touchdown (presumably in the regular season), I’ll take that ball with me.”