Former University of Hawaii quarterback Colt Brennan signed a one-year contract with the Oakland Raiders yesterday, five days after being released by the Washington Redskins.
"He has an opportunity," said Ryan Tollner, Brennan’s agent. "Now he has to make the most of it."
After acquiring quarterback John Beck in a trade Monday morning, the Redskins released Brennan that afternoon. On Tuesday, Brennan was unclaimed on waivers, making him a free agent available to negotiate with any National Football League team.
Brennan received interest from several teams, but the Raiders — under orders from owner Al Davis — were the most persistent.
Brennan was brought in for a tryout yesterday morning. After receiving good reviews, he was offered a contract.
Tollner said Brennan signed the "base" one-year deal yesterday afternoon. Brennan participated in the Raiders’ evening workout at their training facility in Napa, Calif.
The Redskins drafted Brennan in the sixth round in 2008. He was their third-string quarterback in 2008 and spent the 2009 regular season on the injured-reserve list after undergoing a second hip surgery in two years.
Because he was inactive in 2009, he is credited with one year of NFL experience. He will be paid the second-year minimum salary of $395,000 if he is on the Raiders’ roster this regular season.
Brennan, who will turn 27 this month, faces a steep challenge. There are four other quarterbacks on the Raiders’ roster, each with considerably more pro experience than Brennan.
Jason Campbell, who was Brennan’s teammate at Washington for two seasons, is projected to be the starter. Campbell, who is 28, has six years of NFL experience.
Kyle Boller, 29, a former first-round pick from California, has seven years in the league. Charlie Frye, 28, and Bruce Gradkowski, 27, have six and five years of NFL experience, respectively. Frye recently suffered a wrist injury, opening the way for Brennan.
Tollner said Brennan could be considered "the young guy who hasn’t had his shot and now wants to make the most of it. … That’s what makes this opportunity appealing."
Brennan will be in familiar company. The Raiders’ starting center, Samson Satele, was Brennan’s center at UH in 2005 and 2006. Satele and his family served as Brennan’s hosts those years.
During UH’s Pro Day in March 2008, Ted Tollner — Ryan Tollner’s uncle — coached Brennan during passing drills. Ted Tollner is the Raiders’ passing-game coordinator.
Brennan was studying the Raiders’ playbook last night. He also was receiving tutorial sessions from the offensive coaches. "It seems they want to give him a look," Ryan Tollner said.
The Raiders’ first preseason game is Thursday against the Cowboys, and there is hope Brennan might be used late in the game.
One good sign is Brennan was given jersey No. 4 — his high school number, as well as the one worn by his childhood idol, Brett Favre.