The Raiders have completely restarted at cornerback.
On Monday, the team released 2011 third-round CB DeMarcus Van Dyke and signed former Eagles CB Joselio Hanson.
With the moves, the Raiders now have six cornerbacks who were not on the team's roster a year ago. They cut '11 starters Stanford Routt and Chris Johnson prior to free agency, allowed free agent Lito Sheppard to leave and dumped their two CB draft picks from a year ago. Fourth-rounder Chimdi Chekwa was also cut but later re-signed to Oakland's practice squad.
Hanson, who spent six years in Philadelphia, was one of the Eagles' final cuts. He has been their primary slot corner for several years who also has played outside when needed. He primarily played inside.
The Raiders are switching defensive schemes under new head coach Dennis Allen. For years under Al Davis, who passed away last year, the Raiders were primarily a press-man team that favorite elite speed at corner, and Van Dyke (a 4.28 40-yard dash at the Combine) certainly fit that mold.
But Allen wants to mix in far more zone coverage, and he needed a nickel corner to work with projected starters Ron Bartell and Shawntae Spencer.
Van Dyke, who is subject to the waiver process because he has fewer than four years of experience, figures to be claimed by a team quickly.