Raiders get busy with signings

Alvis Whitted

The Oakland Raiders had a busy Friday, signing fullback Justin Griffith and tight ends Tony Stewart and Fred Wakefield, and re-signing wide receiver Alvis Whitted.

Justin Griffith spent his first four seasons in the league with the Atlanta Falcons as the lead blocker for a potent rushing attack. It is worthy to note that while he was a fullback by trade, he worked with current offensive line coach Tom Cable and current assistant coach Greg Knapp during his tenure in Atlanta.

Griffith will sign a three-year deal with Oakland.

Coming out of Mississippi State, Griffith was seen as a marginal blocker but has worked hard to get better. One area that has always been considered a plus is his hands.

The former fourth-round pick has 87 receptions in his career and has averaged 4.7 yards per rush.

Tony Stewart, a fifth-round pick by the Philadelphia Eagles in 2001, spent the last five years with the Cincinatti Bengals. His primary duties were run blocking and his top receiving year came in 2003 when he caught 21 passes.

Fred Wakefield, an undrafted free agent out of Illinois, has played his whole career with the Arizona Cardinals, catching two passes in a conversion role to tight end. Wakefield had previously been a defensive lineman, tallying 92 tackles and 6.5 sacks in a career that began in 2001.

Alvis Whitted set a career-high with 27 receptions last year for the Raiders. He has been with the Raiders for the previous five seasons.

On the Rhodes: "Dominic will be a dynamic presence that can diversify our offense both as a runner and pass catcher. He is focused and determined to come here and compete immediately with our other running backs," said Raiders Head Coach Lane Kiffin.

"The two factors that all of our players need to have in common is, they must be great competitors and understand a team philosophy. From our research and conversations with Dominic it was very evident that he is about both of these and we're excited to have him."

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