Big opportunity for DeMarcus Van Dyke

NAPA, Calif. -- A player who has a great chance to ascend in the Oakland Raiders’ training camp is cornerback DeMarcus Van Dyke.

He has a chance to show he belongs in the starting mix.

Van Dyke, a third-round pick in 2011, took an important step in establishing himself Monday when he was working with the first-team defense with projected starter Ronald Bartell out with a hamstring injury. Bartell should be back at some point, but this will give Van Dyke time to impress the new coaching staff.

So far, so good.

New Oakland coach Dennis Allen lauded Van Dyke for his effort Monday. If he continues to make strides, I think Van Dyke could push Bartell or, more likely, Shawntae Spencer, in the coming weeks.