What attracted Tyrell Williams to sign with the Raiders

 nbcsports.com  03/14/2019 06:57:09 

ALAMEDA – Raiders general manager Mike Mayock said acquiring elite receiver Antonio Brown became an attraction that drew others to the Silver and Black.

“All of a sudden there’s this energy around the NFL where other players want to come here,” Mayock said. “We’ve had an awful lot of phone calls in the last 48 hours that are just exciting.”

That wasn’t lip service.

It helped hook Tyrell Williams, as a matter of fact.

The 6-foot-4, 205-pound deep threat said so Wednesday night, shortly after signing a four-year, $44 million contract at the Raiders training facility.

That’s a hefty sum, and comes with $22 million guaranteed. That was obviously a draw.

So was playing opposite Brown, a four-time first-team All Pro who draws special attention in the pattern.

“Seeing AB come here, seeing some of the things they’re doing on the offensive side of the ball, it’s exciting,” the former L.A. Chargers receiver said in a press conference. “I’ve gone against the Raiders the past four years, so it’s an easy transition for me.”

It also helps that he’s from the West Coast, and his father Ray is an Oakland Tech High grad and a massive Raiders fan. His dad rooted for the rival Chargers when he son was there so he would’ve supported any team, but this choice is special.

Joining an offense with so many new offensive weapons could be a smart choice. Brown’s the centerpiece, someone who should create favorable matchups for Williams.

“Antonio’s going to draw a lot of attention,” Williams said. “When they’re doubling him I’ll be able to get a solo matchup. I’m definitely looking forward to that.”

Head coach Jon Gruden wouldn’t comment directly on Williams – his deal wasn’t officially done yet – but said he wants to form the NFL’s best receiver corps. The Raiders should have a good one, especially if they’re able to retain Jordy Nelson as the third option and a solid possession receiver and red-zone target.

[RELATED: AB excited for next challenge]

Williams exceeded 1,000 yards once in his four years with the Chargers, when he got 119 targets in 2016, but got roughly half that in subsequent seasons. Targets might stay at recent levels with Brown available, but Williams isn’t worried about that.

“As a receiver everybody wants the ball, but I think all of us are going to have opportunities to get the ball and make plays in this offense,” Williams said. “I have a chance to learn from one of the best receivers in the game, so why not do it?”

ALAMEDA – Antonio Brown knows the Raiders are moving to Las Vegas next year. That was part of the attraction donning silver and black, to capitalize on Nevada’s lack of state tax. And, you know, the glitz and glam of a destination city doesn’t hurt.

The star receiver was sensitive to this being the last season in Oakland, and was adamant that performing well here matters before the move.

“For me to be here in Oakland, a part of the Oakland Raiders and be able to be on the last team that’s ever going to be here in Oakland, it’s something special in itself,” Brown said during his introductory press conference. “So, there’s pressure in that, there’s excitement in that and there is a lot that comes with that, and I’m here today ready to embrace all that.”

Brown got a taste of local Raiders fans on Tuesday. He met up with Derek Carr at the quarterback’s Livermore house around noon, and then two went to work out at a local park.

Word travels fast, and fans showed up to watch this impromptu session.

“I was at the park earlier, throwing some routes, and some guys from Oakland were out there watching,” Brown said. “They were pretty excited when I caught one long pass. They were excited for me to jump in the Black Hole. I’m looking forward to the experience. I’m looking forward to leaping into the Black Hole, get our fans excited, celebrating with Derek, celebrating with the guys.

"I’m just here today, just the beginning of a great journey. Hopefully you guys are excited moving forward.”

Brown reported to the East Bay a day before the trade and new contract became official, and made a good impression.

[Antonio Brown 1-on-1: New Raiders receiver 'excited' for next challenge]

“It has been a great experience, but it has been going really fast,” Brown said. “I’m just trying to take it in but it’s all God’s plan, man. It’s an honor to be here with Mr. Mayock, Mr. Gruden and around some great players. It’s a great opportunity and I’m ready to just get to work and serve some fresh air and some new energy around here and hopefully it develops some great attributes.”

Antonio Brown can't wait to get to work with Raiders quarterback Derek Carr. 

He's so giddy, the newest Raiders star wide receiver visited his quarterback's house immediately after being introduced by his new team. 

"Special delivery!" Watch AB and DC hug it out as they start their journey together in the Silver and Black. 

Special delivery @derekcarrqb 😁🤗☠️ @Raiders pic.twitter.com/4WnfAxWmJo

— Antonio Brown (@AB84) March 13, 2019

Brown officially became a Raider via trade from Pittsburgh on Wednesday. He also received a hefty raise with Oakland giving him a new three-year, $50.125 million with $30.125 million guaranteed. 

[Antonio Brown 1-on-1: New Raiders receiver 'excited' for next challenge]

Carr has never thrown to receiver with the pedigree of Brown. The 30-year-old wideout is a four-time first-team All-Pro, and has at least 100 receptions in each of the last six seasons.

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