Despite already having two solid safeties, the Oakland Raiders are ready to take a chance on former Jags safety Donovin Darius. The Raiders on Tuesday signed Darius, a big-time hitter in the secondary who has missed parts of the last two years with injuries. He spent the first nine years of his career with the Jags before being cut, by the surprise of many, this past June. “We are extremely excited about adding Donovin to the Raiders,” said Raiders head coach Lane Kiffin. “He will bring us immediate competition in our secondary. Donovin exemplifies hard work and dedication to the game. Working with Donovin at Jacksonville, I was able to see what a phenomenal competitor he is. He will fit great into our team philosophy.”
The signing of Darius adds to a solid defense that was third-ranked overall last season, and the number one pass defense in the league. Darius could challenge current starter Stuart Schweigert at the safety spot. Michael Huff, who was the teams first round pick in 2006 and has played well at the other saefty spot, could learn a lot from a vet like Darius. Darius finished his career in Jacksonville with 614 tackles, 14 interceptions, eight forced fumbles, six fumble recoveries and two sacks.
“I am excited to be part of the Raider organization,” said Darius. “This is an organization that I feel is heading in the right direction with the new coaching staff and the players. I am very optimistic about the change that is taking place within the team. I look forward to being a part of the Silver and Black. I think it’s a great opportunity and a great fit.” New Raiders coach Kiffin worked with Darius previously when he was Jacksonville’s defensive quality control coach in 2000.