Posted by Jerry McDonald, NFL editor and writer for ANG Newspapers
For getting a look at the Raiders’ lone practice Sunday afternoon, it was more advantageous to be a couple of guys drinking beer and peering over a fence than it was to be an accredited member of the Kansas City media.
As per club policy, the Raiders denied practice access to Kansas City Star reporter Wright Thompson.
Thompson waited outside the practice area and was granted interview access once the sessions were over.
To be fair, this sort of paranoia is fairly widespread throughout the NFL. Word out of Miami is new coach Nick Saban has control issues which may set a new standard.
Meanwhile, two fans had prime end zone seats in the back yard of a small home next to the Aegis Senior Housing Home. Security apparently determined since the two were on private property and weren’t filming anything or making a ruckus, they weren’t doing any harm.
Any city which barbecue restaurant Arthur Bryant’s calls home deserves a sneak peek at the early stages of the 2005. So here you go, K.C., a scouting report worthy of a non-coach who makes his living typing on a temperamental laptop.
Offense: The quarterback (No. 5), a guy by the name of Kerry Collins, doesn’t move too well but appears to have a terrific arm. He loves throwing to this new guy (No. 18), Randy Moss from Minnesota. Ya might want to use more than one defender on him.
Problem is, this No. 84, Jerry Porter, isn’t bad, either. No. 89, Ronald Curry is coming along after an Achilles’ injury. He only practices every other day or so, but could be better than Porter when he returns.
They have a huge offensive line and a powerful running back, No. 34, LaMont Jordan, who will pound between the tackles. This won’t look like the same weak running team as last year.
The best hope is to attack in the middle between a second-year center, No. 64, Jake Grove, and a converted tackle at guard, No. 66, Langston Walker. Maybe Collins can be forced into a bad throw. If not, these guys are scoring 30-plus.
Defense: The beef is centered on a couple of heavyweights inside in No. 99, Warren Sapp, and No. 92, Ted Washington. Although, they could be past their prime. No. 93, Tommy Kelly, played inside last year and is intriguing at end. No. 98, Bobby Hamilton, is steady and unspectacular.
Have players like No. 91, Tyler Brayton, and No. 96, Grant Irons, lining up as if they’re linebackers. Might want to send Priest Holmes on pass routes against them. Inside linebackers are led by No. 55, Danny Clark, who too often makes his stops after 4- and 5-yard gains.
Charles Woodson, No. 2 in practice, No. 24 on game day, is watching with an injury. No. 21, Nnamdi Asomugha, is rangy, has long arms and may have improved a great deal. Rookies Fabian Washington, No. 27, and Stanford Routt, will play a lot and have a lot to learn, although they’re fast and eager.
Safeties as a group ought to have Tony Gonzalez salivating, although Marques Anderson, No. 23, can do some damage on run support.
Special teams: Kickers are pretty good, but who can really tell? They swing their legs a few times and take the rest of the day off. As for return specialists, it’s a revolving door.
The uneducated guess here is that free agent Chris Carr may have a role. He has great acceleration and has also made a few plays as a corner in the secondary, which gives him a chance to stick.
The point in this exercise? Any team that has designs on getting some information from a media member watching from the sideline would do just as well to go pick up the latest Street and Smith’s.
The Randy Watch
Randy Moss dropped two passes in the end zone, one on each side of the field. The second one, on a perfect slant pass from Kerry Collins, had Moss steaming.
Moss screamed a one-word expletive, then shouted back, “Nice throw, K.C.”
Moss is scheduled to make his first media appearance Monday after the morning practice. He has not done any interviews through the first three days, local or national.
Beat The Clock
It was the slowest day of camp, but still one in which players had to keep their eyes on the time. A typical schedule as written on a grease board:
7:30 to 9 a.m. – Breakfast.
9 a.m. – Treatment
9 a.m. – Chapel.
11 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Brunch.
1 p.m. to 3:50 p.m. – Taping schedule
1 p.m. – Special teams meeting
1:30 p.m. – Unit meeting
3:50 p.m. – Walkthrough
4 p.m. – Practice
6 p.m. to 8 p.m. – Dinner
7:30 p.m. – Special teams meeting
8 p.m. – Unit meetings
10 p.m. to 11 p.m. – Snack
11 p.m. – Curfew/bed check
The Raiders had free agent running back Jesse Chatman in Saturday, and made no announcement as to whether they will attempt to sign him.
They should. Given the injury history of Justin Fargas, the Raiders need another runner to back up Jordan and keep Zack Crockett in his role as a fullback and short-yardage specialist.