Amid the drafted and undrafted rookies that participated in the May minicamp held by the Raiders, a number of more veteran players were also given a chance to tryout. One of those tryout players was Kevin Haslam – a 6'5" 304 lb offensive lineman out of Rutgers.
Haslam showed enough in the minicamp that the Raiders signed him to the roster and he has been with the team in OTAs, making a push to make the final squad.
Haslam was an undrafted free agent in 2010 and was signed to the Jaguars in camp and made the final squad as an UDFA which speaks to his skill and drive.
He suffered a hand injury in 2010 and then a torn MCL in 2011 ending on IR both seasons. He was released by the Jaguars in March of 2012.
Haslam is athletic enough to play in the zone blocking scheme that the Raiders are re-installing this year. He can play both tackle and guard and has good size.
He was kind enough to answer some questions to let Raider Nation get to know him a little better.
He's active on Twitter and you can follow him @KHaslam72
Q: What is your home town/state?
Haslam: Mahwah, NJ
Q: Did you root for a particular NFL team growing up? Who? Why?
Haslam: Not really a specific team - I was mainly a fan of specific players like Jerome Bettis and Jevon Kearse. If people asked I would just say the Giants.
Q: Did you have an idol growing up? Who?
Haslam: Athletically, I really dont think I had an idol. But in my life, it was my mother.
Q: What are your strengths as a player? What do you bring to the team?
Haslam: I would say my versatility is my biggest strength. At this level every lineman should know how to play every position, if needed. I've been doing that since Freshman year of college. At first I hated switching spots, but now I see it helped me become a better player.
Q: Why did you choose the Raiders as a free agent?
Haslam: I was invited to mini camp after the Jaguars released me. I spent a year out of football because of injury. Camp went well for me so I was more then happy to sign with the Raiders.
Q: Did you know anyone currently on the squad or coaching staff? What did they tell you about the team?
Haslam: I did not know anyone on the squad or the staff before coming here
Q: You played for the Jaguars previously. What kind of differences do you see in that organization versus the Raiders?
Haslam: Its too early to tell any big differences since its only been OTAs. Though from a coaching standpoint I think the Raiders staff is great - the attention to detail and helping all guys become students of the game.
Q: What hobbies do you have away from football?
Haslam: I like to think of myself as a film enthusiast
Q: If you're a gamer, what system and (if you don't mind) what is your ID so Raider Nation can play against you?
Haslam: Im a gamer but I'm never online, because I get killed in madden or nba2k12 so I dont even try anymore. It hurts my pride when I lose football games by 35.
Q: Which NFL player do you compare your skill set with?
Haslam: No idea, really, but being in Jacksonville I learned a lot from Eugene Monroe, so some things I do are attributed to his style.
Q: What was your major at Rutgers and why did you choose it?
Haslam: Communications Major. Interpersonal and Intercultural communication interested me Freshman year so I stuck with it.
Q: After football, what would be your perfect job?
Haslam: Coaching football at the college level and taking it from there
Q: Is there anything you'd like Raider Nation to know about you?
Haslam: After this i think they've learned alot
Q: Is there anything you'd like to say to Raider Nation?
Haslam:I appreciate the opportunity the Raiders have given me, and I appreciate the fans that support me being here. I've only been here a couple weeks but i can see why they are considered the best in the NFL.