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The silver lining

If you’re one of those people shaking their heads because three of Oakland’s first four draft picks ended up with sore hamstrings, watching their new teammates finish minicamp Sunday, just wait until next year.

That’s not to say it will be a year Darrius Heyward-Mike Mitchell and Louis Murphy won’t contribute anything. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not all that significant that they didn’t finish strong. Look at it as if they were thrown off the high-dive without knowing how to swim and their overprotective parents decided they’d be better off staying out of the pool on Sunday.

Meanwhile, players who were dog-paddling a year ago were making like Michael Phelps (minus the bong). Some of the best looking players at the three-day camp included running back Darren McFadden, wide receiver Chaz Schilens and defensive end Trevor Scott _ all rookies last season.

Tom Cable submitted Tyvon Branch, a first-team strong safety, as well, and he may well have been on film, athough nothing jumped out to my untrained eye.

Going back a year further, the Class of 2007 was well-represented with starting left tackle Mario Henderson, wide receiver Johnnie Lee Higgins and running back Michael Bush looking confident and effective, and that doesn’t even include the injured Zach Miller and what they hope and expect out of quarterback JaMarcus Russell.

“It’s good to see the guys in year two and year three starting to develop and make plays,” Cable said.

Defensive end Jay Richardson also flashed during the final two sessions with a pair of would-be sacks.

What that means is this _ through all the upheaval of his cat fight with Lane Kiffin that crippled the team on the field, Al Davis and Co. have picked and developed enough good young players over the past two years to serve as the core of something competitive.

That’s no small thing in a division which was won with a .500 record last year and a league which routinely sees dramatic turnarounds as Atlanta and Miami accomplished last year.

Schilens couldn’t help but think back to a year ago and his fish-out-of-water experience as a seventh-round draft pick out of San Diego State.

“I know what they feel like and they’re dealing with it well,” Schilens said. “They’re smart and they have a good knack for the game. They came out well prepared, and except for a little hamstring soreness I think they’re good. That’s something they’ll get used to.”

Watching Schilens operate over the weekend, aside from a dropped pass in the end zone, and the decision to take a pass on Michael Crabtree seems reasonable. Schilens is taller, was faster coming out of college, and looks comfortable on the deeper patterns the Raiders plan to run this season.

(They’re not necessarily connecting on a lot of them yet. Cable is promising that will come later).

Schilens said there is no real way to be prepared for the first weekend as a pro.

“You get thrown into it, you deal with it and adapt as bet you can,” Schilens said. “It’s a year later and I think I’m a better much better receiver mechanically.”

McFadden looked like the McFadden of training camp a year ago, consistently beating defenders to the corner even when it seemed to be strung out. He was as sure-handed as any receiver, and putting him in the slot, in motion or on swing passes out of the backfield make a touchdown-on-any-play capability.

It served as a reminder that McFadden, once the toe miseries began, was a shell of what he was in training camp.

“I’m eager to get going. I’ve got a steel toe in my shoe and I don’t even want to give that a chance to happen again,” McFadden said.

Like Schilens, McFadden, watched the rookie class struggle and had a flashback.

“You want to try and do everything perfect and you’re going to make mistakes,” McFadden said. “I’m sure not being able to go on the last day is going to play on their mind a little bit. You’ve got to let it roll off your shoulders.”

The way minicamp is set up, with no locker room, I never got a chance to talk to Scott, who spent a lot of time getting around offensive tackles and racing in to the backfield. If Scott has put on weight _ he played last year in the 240s _ visual evidence suggests he didn’t overdo it, and that’s a good thing.

MISCELLANEOUS

– No word as to whether Samie Parker and Drisan James were signed to contracts. Both wide receivers were in on a tryout basis. James appeared to have the better tryout, while there were reports Parker had actually agreed to terms on a contract.

UPDATE: Raiders.com confirms Parker has signed a contract.

Expect one or both to be added before the next OTA with Javon Walker recovering from knee surgery and Arman Shields still not healthy. Shields it appears, simply can’t get over the hump physically. He’s had no additional surgeries in the past year yet can’t string practices together.

– Defensive end Derrick Burgess, who watched practices with towels draped over his head with what the team was calling a “stomach virus” never made it to the field Sunday. Even when Burgess watched, it was away from the position group, standing apart from the crowd, rather than talking to younger players.

In fairness, it could be he or the medical staff considered himself contageous. But it’s a situation that bears watching.

– One thing I forgot to note _ Friday was the day the music died.

No more music during warmups before practice, another departure from something instituted by Kiffin. In that regard, the atmosphere was more businesslike, but it also made for more interaction between the players as they stretched and got loose, giving them the chance to talk and joke with each other rather than relax and listen to the tunes.

– Yeah, I know. I’m too hard on Russell. I realize he had three different play-callers last year and finished the season playing well in a run-oriented offense. He kept mistakes to a minimum. That’s all been duly noted here to anyone paying attention.

He had only one interception that I can recall during the minicamp, and is still smart about avoiding mistakes, checking down to tight ends on many occasions.

You’ve never heard me call him a bust, or anything close to it. He seems to have the kind of personality where he’s not going to be overly concerned without outside criticism, always a good thing for a quarterback.

What shouldn’t be happening is this _ misfiring on a lot of routine passes. There were too many short throws, some less than 10 yards, that landed at the feet of receivers or running backs, with the nose of the ball turned downward on arrival. He was inaccurate on some medium and deep throws as well, which Cable attributed in part to receivers getting comortable with deeper routes.

You can talk about the change in systems all you want, but Russell has been throwing with Raiders receivers throughout the offseason and the timing should be better. He still looks inconsistent as a passer.

Both Cable and Jeff Garcia said Russell is going to be held to a higher standard because of his status as the starting quarterback and as a No. 1 overall draft choice.

That standard exists year-round, but it’s a lot more important to meet it in July and August than it is in May.

STRANGE BROWN QUOTE

Not sure what to make of this statement by Tim Brown on a recent appearance on WCNN radio in Atlanta, sent courtesy of sportsradiointerviews.com . . .

On meeting Al Davis for the first time . . .

“Meeting Al (Davis) was pretty unique. I found out five or ten minutes after my first practice there that he hated African-American athletes from Notre Dame. And they literally told me that. They literally told me that because we’re known for using our education more than our athletic ability that he thought that I would be one of these guys that would basically take the money and run. I don’t know if that was a ploy to get me amped up, but it certainly worked.”

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Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • SharkCatcher

    wishes we had little pictures next to our screen names, that would settle alot of arguments around here

  • http://atm Raider O

    Good night MR.
    Later Nation.

  • SharkCatcher

    who is the ” wu tang clan” u speak of?

  • http://none The Real MaddenRaider

    Raider O, after reading Marcus’s book, I believe Al would say such things. I believe Al Davis does have a problem with black players that racist whites would perceive as being “uppity”. In other words, educated and with resolve. I really believe that was his problem with Marcus. And, that’s just my opinion. Tie in Tim Brown’s statements, and it gives my opinion some serious mileage. I’m going to be watching Tim Brown closely now. If he retracts it and his retraction seems influenced by fear of litigation, or of course if he stands by his statements, I’m done with all of NFL football until they run Davis out. I won’t watch a sport with an owner that’s openly racist. Surely Al’s not the only racist owner, but being openly racist is another story. Telling a black player from Notre Dame that you don’t like black athletes from Notre Dame? Right to his face? My goodness. Marge Schott. Fuq that. Never mind boycotting the Raiders. I’d be done with football if the NFL didn’t move to get rid of Al in this instance. With Al gone, I could even be a Raider fan again. I know it’s beside the point but the team would even be better on the field, too. But that’s beside the issue right now. This is far more important.

  • http://none The Real MaddenRaider

    Did SharkCatcher already pass out? That was quick. I’ve been there, guy. S’tfaced, decide to log on, wake up at 7 in the morning with your face in the keyboard. I grew up and learned how to handle my alcohol. But I was an adolescent once, too. Don’t feel bad.

  • r8rpaver

    night o

  • r8rpaver

    MR: im a white man also and into beer # ??? but i still have a REALLY hard time believing AD is a racist..do you really think an owner of an nfl football team is a racist???? i dont think so i think it has more to do with USC vs ND then anything…i dont buy it…i hate he said she said BS

  • r8rpaver

    Did AD say it to Tim Browns Face????Nope so take it for what its worth…he said she said BS

  • r8rpaver

    Goodnight NATION

  • NoMoreFargas

    What’s up nation man 4eva you sir have been on fire , I love you’re hardcore support and you can complain about russell all you want he look heavy in those pictures and with his pay their is no offseason!!!!

  • MaddenRedneck

    I begin to wonder if Jerry was watching the same camp as Glenn Dickey because Dickey says Russell looked good. Maybe its just Jerry’s negative side gushing out but it makes you really wonder what he has been doing at those minicamps besides looking for the negatives first. I can understand the issues with dropped passes but those balls have been hitting receivers in the hands all camp according to others.

    http://www.sfexaminer.com/sports/Dickey-Raiders-rookie-WR-makes-a-forgettable-first-impression–44761517.html

  • MaddenRedneck

    Tim Brown playing the race card to promote himself, what a laugher. Hey Tim is that why did you call plays to yourself early in your career, to pad your stats? Only to drop passes at the most crucial times like in the playoffs and Superbowl. Let it go man your a has been.

  • 2sense

    NOMOREFARGAS SAYS:
    May 11th, 2009 at 9:49 am

    Charles woodson was the man and last time I checked we where awesome with him so take you’re good character but we lose bs to another teams this is the Raiders “JUST WIN BABY”!
    ————————————————————-

    If your definition of awesome consists of 3 winning seasons and 5 seasons at .500 or less then I guess you’d be correct. Raiders record during Charles Woodson’s tenure:

    1998 8-8
    1999 8-8
    2000 12-4
    2001 10-6
    2002 11-5
    2003 4-12
    2004 5-11
    2005 4-12

    Woodson was far from a character guy and he choked. Every time he needed to step up and make a play to change the momentum of a game he gagged. Watch the “tuck rule” game. He was a product of hype. He was a little above average at best and was always too full of himself to ever be an elite player in a pro team sport.

    In 2000-2002 they had the leaders to cancel out the riff raff. Notice that after all of the classy vets retired or left after the super bowl the team was in shambles again. Before 2000 they were average for a long time as well with the exception of the Bo Jackson years.

    Character and work ethic is contagious and as long as it’s coupled with talent it results in wins. Sounds cliche but if you were a coach or a player ever and were any good, you’d know that. This is a solid nucleus of talent and if Cable is the guy to keep it together and develop it then this will be a solid football team for a long time.

    2sense Says:
    May 11th, 2009 at 6:36 am

    This is the best character this team has had for as long as I can remember.

    It’s nice to look at the roster and not see the names of hoodlum football players littering it. No Charles Woodson, James Trapp, Jerry Porter, Randy Moss, Jeff George, DeAngelo Hall, etc, etc, etc. There always seems to be that one piece of garbage that pouts, chokes or gives up when it counts the most. I don’t see that this year. It’s kind of refreshing.

    Al has always put together a talented roster on the top end. Kiffin was on to something when he addressed the mid roster issues that the Raiders have had. The talent was there. It was the role players that were non existent. For some reason that’s too often overlooked.

    I think Cable’s persuasion to bring in some scrap will be the difference maker. I also am pretty sure that I will be in front of my TV in week 17 watching the team with pride rather than anger and embarrassment regardless of record. I have a pretty good feeling about this team leaving it out there every week. As long as there is a solid core of scrap coupled with direction from the coaching staff, this team will develop into something special.

    Only game day will tell us when.

  • edward teach

    If you read Tim Brown’s quote (actually READ it), he does not say that Al Davis said those things. He said that “they” told him that Al hates African American athletes from Notre Dame.

    No word from Timmy as to who “they” are, and as far as it being true; if Al supposedy did feel that way, why would he have drafted Brown in the first round?

    As to why Timmy said what he said, well, if you look at his comments over the past few years it’s pretty clear that he likes seeing his name in print. Saying something controversial is the best way to make that happen these days because it’s not like you have to worry about the press vetting anything anymore.

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    GOOD MORNING SPORT’S FAN’S,4EVA,NOMOREFARGAS,,,

  • RaiderRockstar

    good morning Dirt Lot, ed teach, NMF, 4eva …

  • MaddenRedneck

    I wonder if Tim Brown and Warren Sapp share a bunk bed to go along with the blow horn.

  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder

    Mike Florio disses San Diego and Norv Turner and gives a prop to the Raiders:

    Last year, the San Diego Chargers needed a miracle to capture the watered-down AFC West and make it to the playoffs.

    This year, lightning might not strike again.

    On paper, the Chargers have the talent. But questions persist regarding whether Norv Turner is the right man for this or any NFL head-coaching job.

    So even with Philip Rivers(notes), LaDainian Tomlinson(notes), Darren Sproles(notes) and a healthy Shawne Merriman(notes) and a healthy Jyles Tucker(notes) and a rookie first-rounder who does the same thing that both of them do, it might not be enough to make it four straight division titles in a wide-open AFC West featuring teams in Kansas City and Oakland that might be more dangerous than expected. (We can forget about the Broncos.)

  • MaddenRedneck

    Davis had good reason to think the money might change Tim Brown, how soon we forget his power play with Denver for more money.

  • RaiderRockstar

    #414 thanks for sharing MaddenRedneck …

    Glenn Dickey says DHB is awful. Then follows it up by saying:

    On the plus side of the minicamp, Russell was very impressive, throwing every kind of pass. He’s always had a strong arm and he’s learned to use a soft touch on short passes. If he gets good protection from the offensive line, which is still a question, he could have an outstanding year.

    (which contradicts EVERYTHING we’ve read or heard about JaWalrus in camp over the weekend!)

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    VERY WEEL SAID 2SENSE POST-417, HAVE ALWAY’S THOUGHT C.WOODSON COULD / SHOULD HAVE BEEN AN ALL TIMER, HALL OF FAME DB,INSTEAD WAS AS U SAID GOOD TO VERY GOOD , GOOD MORNING ROCKSTAR.

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    VERY WELL SAID , SORRY..

  • RuffRaider

    Morning Nation.

    Ok, so now Al Davis is a supposedly a racist??? WTF – No way, no how!

    Who are these “they” people Timmy B. refers to anyway, the ones that allegedly told him AD said this? In what context did “they” say it, was it just locker room BS, did “they” say it because the Raiders cut some clown from ND in the past, did “they” say it because Al wouldn’t give some ND athlete the contract he was looking for? This 2nd kind of chatter always gets lost in translation.

    “They” said…. yeah right – THEY!!! Gimme a break!

  • RuffRaider

    # RaiderRockstar Says:
    May 12th, 2009 at 6:12 am

    #414 thanks for sharing MaddenRedneck …

    Glenn Dickey says DHB is awful. Then follows it up by saying:

    On the plus side of the minicamp, Russell was very impressive, throwing every kind of pass. He’s always had a strong arm and he’s learned to use a soft touch on short passes. If he gets good protection from the offensive line, which is still a question, he could have an outstanding year.

    (which contradicts EVERYTHING we’ve read or heard about JaWalrus in camp over the weekend!)

    ……………………..

    Well said, exactly what I was thinking when I read Dickey’s comments.

  • RaiderRockstar

    come on mods. give me a friggin break!

    theres never any swearing in my posts …

  • RaiderRockstar

    Samie Parker is from Long Beach, CA

  • RaiderRockstar

    i’m sorry Dirt Lot. i’ll try to contain myself …

    i have no self control or self discipline when it comes to profanity on Jerry Mac blogs

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    ROCKSTAR, WHAT IS YOUR TAKE ON LORENZO NEAL ?

  • MaddenRedneck

    My question on Neal is does he still have the speed to get into the second level of the defense to block a linebacker before McFadden or Bush run up his butt?

  • RaiderRockstar

    I think Lo Neal is the best offseason acquisition. Not just in free agency, but in the draft as well. of course draft picks are our future and Neal is only a stop gap, but you can’t put a price tag on leadership. What better role model for Bush, McFadden, Rankin & Lawton? Hopefully O’Neal doesn’t miss the entire season. Maybe he gets placed on the PUP list instead of IR and Lorenzo gets to take Oren under his wing as well. That would be ideal

  • RaiderRockstar

    I’d much rather have a FB combo of Neal/Lawton than Pittman/Lawton, Lawton/Reece or Lawton/Bush!

  • NoMoreFargas

    Can’t wait to see Bush running right behind Neal, and Neal can catch the occasional pass.

    GO RAIDERS!!!!!!!

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    DEPTH IS A MUST, JUST SEEM’S 1 OR 2 OF THESE COUD BE A STAR SOMEWHERE ELSE..

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAaQNACwaLw Raider75

    Oh no. The sky is falling! DHB dropped a couple of passes in his FIRST professional mini-camp and Russell threw some bad passes. The season is over.

    Ridiculous.

  • RaiderRockstar

    I hope the media keeps trashing Russell & DHB. The Chargers will stuff 9 guys in the box on our first offensive play on MNF and JR will find DHB streaking down the sideline for an 80 yard TD catch

  • RaiderRockstar

    is Jerry doing a live chat today?

    I’d like to ask him when Javon Walker is expected to be back out on the field …

  • r8rpaver

    RR yep at 1:00 pst

  • RaiderRockstar

    Oh no. The sky is falling! DHB dropped a couple of passes in his FIRST professional mini-camp and Russell threw some bad passes. The season is over.

    ***

    Crabtree isn’t even going to be ready until training camp. He’s not a participant at 49ers mini-camps. You wonder just how many bad throws they saw from Alex Smith!?

  • RuffRaider

    Lot’s of young receivers have problems holding onto the ball. Heck, Jerry Rice dropped something like 15 passes his rookie year, and T.O. had hands of stone early on.

    Once DHB gets comfortable he’ll be fine and I hope they keep running him with the first team opposite our starting corners. That will definitely put him on a fast track, verses playing against much lesser talent.

  • RaiderRockstar

    Smith and Hill shared all the snaps. Hill was given the first snaps. Damon Huard is not attending the minicamp. Nate Davis was nursing what appeared to be a hamstring strain. Smith’s passes had nice zip, though some were off target.

    Undrafted cornerback Jahi Word-Daniels picked off a Smith-to-Morgan sideline pass that hung up in the air.

    Michael Crabtree was on a stationary bike.

    -Matt Barrows (Sac Bee)

    ***

    LOL. what did I tell ya?

  • RaiderRockstar

    DHB is going to abuse Nnamdi in the next camp. watch

  • Stabler76

    Neal and Bush should put some bruises on the opposing linebackers—- and gain a lot of yardage doing it.

  • RaiderRockstar

    new post up ladies …

  • Senile King

    …As unhappy ,but not exactly suprised, as I am by Chubbustus’ accuracy issues, perhaps one of the bright spots ,as reported , is Turdell Sands in visably better condition…

    Perhaps the next time our resident playground bully wishes to challenge Shane Lechter, the subsiquent confrontation might more aptly be discribed as “David vs Goliath jr”…

    …Dakota, Remember during the Laker pre-season, Lamar Odom’s inappropiate- “too cool for school” reaction to his intentional/ unintentional pass out of bounds ?

    …Based on the recent embarrasing debacle in Houston, Odom’s affliction appears contagious….

  • MaddenRaiderisadouchebag

    Uhh Jerry, what happened to my long-winded post where I explained(and provided quotes/facts) that says Al Davis is a racial pioneer. Is it so threatening that I show Maddenpansy what a liar he is and give props to Al Davis?

  • MaddenRaiderisadouchebag

    Here’s a more condensed version…

    Hired first African-American Head Coach
    Hired first Hispanic Head Coach
    Hired first African-American official
    Hired first African-American league executive
    Draft first African-American QB in first round
    Drafted first African-American QB #1 overall

    Quotes from African-Americans

    “Racism in this organization was not an issue. Mr. Davis would
    not let that happen.” Art Shell

    Brad Pye, Jr., Former AFL administrative assistant, first African-American administrator in football
    “A lot of people think of Al Davis as a maverick. He’s also a maverick in opening up opportunities for minorities.”

    Dr. Aaron C. Wade, former AFL official, first African-American official
    “I’d say he’s a trailblazer. He had no color barrier.”

    Willie Lanier:
    “Hiring (minority) coaches, players, this is something he did over the years. This is not something new where he came to some politically correctness in the 1990s.”

    Denny Greene:
    “I think Al Davis opened up the game up. I think he opened the game up for the African- American athlete.”

    Willie Brown:
    “He’s a pioneer, in terms of getting black players to play and letting them be the best they can be.”

    Bernie Custis, Black quarterback and teammate of Al Davis at Syracuse University, 1948-50:
    “I came to know Al as someone that lived by a certain code and this code was to judge everybody by their content of their character and capabilities and nothing else. That’s the code that I detected at the time and I think it’s stayed with him throughout the years.”

    Gene Upshaw:
    “It was Sid Gilman and Al Davis who said here’s an opportunity to give these people (black players) a chance to play.”

    George Atkinson:
    “Al found a ton of good players in the black schools.”

    Eddie Robinson:
    “Al’s word was important. If he’s tell you something, this is it.”

    Defiance led to tolerance
    Oakland Tribune, Sep 25, 2006 by Jerry McDonald

    Clem Daniels was one of those players.

    “We had to take stands to break down a lot of the bigotry and things that were going on,” Daniels said. “There were still some very segregated cities, and we were confronted with a lot of situations. And that’s the best thing I can say about Al Davis — he backed us.”

    Davis moved a Raiders preseason game from Mobile, Ala., to Frank Youell Field in Oakland because of the concerns of his African- American players, which included Daniels, Powell, Bo Roberson and Fred Williamson.

    He did it despite losing gate receipts for attendance that would have been considerably more than the 8,317 that came to the rescheduled game in Oakland.

    In Mobile, the stands were segregated and blacks were not allowed to use the bathroom, Powell said.

    Daniels said the black players met and told sportswriters they wouldn’t play. He also said he told Davis.

    “He said, ‘I’ll call (AFL Commissioner) Joe Foss and get it changed,’” Daniels said. “Just like that.”

    Davis, Powell and Daniels were also involved in having the 1965 AFL All-Star Game moved from New Orleans to Houston when 23 black players left town in protest over the way they were treated.

    “When we got to New Orleans, I get my luggage, run into the street, hail down a cab, and the driver says, ‘I can’t take you,’” Powell said. “I said, ‘What do you mean, you can’t take me?’ He says he can only have white customers and that I had to find myself a colored cab. There weren’t a hell of a lot of colored cabs at the airport in those days.”

    “Colored cabs,” according to Raiders assistant coach and Hall of Fame cornerback Willie Brown, came with restrictions in terms of where they could and couldn’t go.

    “They wouldn’t go in certain areas,” said Brown, who made the All- Star team playing for Denver in 1965. “They’d drop you off.”

    Black players met at their hotel and signed a legal pad produced by Powell in which they decided not to play.

    In the book “America’s Game, the Epic Story of how Pro Football Captured a Nation,” author Michael MacCambridge writes that city officials produced Ernest N. “Dutch” Morial, an African American who would later be the city’s first black mayor.

    Morial, the first African American to receive a law degree from Louisiana State, told players they were overreacting and defended the New Orleans record on civil rights.

    Powell remembers feeling insulted.

    “He blamed it all on Dr. (Martin Luther) King, that he was a troublemaker for trying to do change,” Powell said. “I told the guy, ‘You just blew it. Those were the worst possible combination of words you could have said.’”

    Powell said he then got a call from Davis, who said he would see what he could do. Players left New Orleans, and by the time most of them had gotten back home, the game was moved to Houston.

    Davis, in an Aug. 1 press conference, talked about how the 1960s affected the Raiders and professional sports.

    “In’65, we had cultural revolution in this country,” Davis said. “We had the Watts riots, we had Detroit, we had Martin Luther King in’68 getting killed. It’s tough to go back in retrospect and remember, but there was a little turmoil in every organization, in every league, over the diversity issue and what was going to happen about it in the country.”

    Davis helped build the Raiders into a power by aggressively seeking talent from small, predominantly black colleges.

    “He’d have someone go to Grambling, Southern, Jackson State, Alcorn State, all the black schools,” Brown said.

    Art Shell, whom Davis made the NFL’s first African-American coach in 1989, is fond of recounting the Raiders draft class of 1968, in which he was taken in the third round.

    That year Davis also selected quarterback Eldridge Dickey of Tennessee A&I in the first round, George Atkinson of Morris Brown in the seventh round and tight end John Eason of Florida A&M in the ninth round.

    “He has always felt, and he tells me to to this day, that there are players in those schools,” Shell said. “They’re out there. You’ve just got to find them.”

    Powell said he always appreciated the fact that Davis stuck by him when he requested a trade to Buffalo in 1966 so he could pursue a business opportunity in Toronto.

    Labeled as a locker room lawyer and a divisive force by some of football’s establishment, Davis’ parting words have stuck with Powell 40 years later.

    “He told me, ‘Don’t let people try and get it in your head that you should change. There’s nothing wrong with you,’” Powell said. “He could have just said adios.”

    By the time Shell arrived in 1968, players such as Powell and Daniels had helped pioneer a more tolerant era.

    “There were a lot of people that took a stand, and I’m very appreciative of it,” Shell said. “I would hope that if players today would go back and look at their history, how things occurred, they would appreciate it too.”

    Brown said he doubts there is a single player on the Raiders roster who knows any details of the struggles of African-American players in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

    “That’s the thing that’s changing about our society,” Shell said.

    “They don’t know their history. Players don’t know the history of this league or the history of the team they’re playing for. I think that’s regrettable because they’re missing out on a lot.”

  • Raider Joseph

    Good post #446. As for the JaMarcuss bashers, I don’t think you really watch the games, do you? There were throws over 30-40 yds in the Denver game where he hit Ashley Lelee in double coverage, the Ravens game where he hit Chaz Schilins, the Texans game where he hit Higgins. His range where he throws most accurately is from 20-50.

    I was a receiver in College. Most routes are option (depending on the defense) and timing plays. If I ran the wrong route or made the wrong read, the QB would throw the ball based on where I was SUPPOSED to be. To the naked eye it would look like he made a horrible throw. The QB has about a three second process time on any given play, that gives 75% of them “accuracy” issues.

    J-Russ has started one year and is the best QB we have had since Gannon, and the only one we have trained from the draft up (worth anything) Since Stabler. Wait. He is not Marinavich. He will be at the very least good. If you watched the last six games (when Cable took over play calling), there was an improvement.

    I am glad that Al D is more patient than some of you, because you guys would trade him and watch him be “Elway” for someone else. Then you would say we were crazy for trading him….be patient (it was a practice).

  • Senile King

    I watched all the games too…

    Raider Joseph,… the Earth is not flat, and you are in denial…

    When Chubbustus indeed had protection,( admittedly a rare sight- thanks largely in part to the dufus-tackle-bookends), routinely,… he couldn’t hit the broadside of Caveman Ryan’s pickeled liver…

    To make matters worse, he was noticeably absent on his off days- failing to at least ATTEMPT to do whatever it takes to compete at the level of Mssrs Brady, Manning etc…

    A visably improved work ethic would do wonders to deflect inherent critisism…

  • http://www.elvis.com Elvis

    Dont be creul bloggers…

    To the Mod/Troll when she is on her period she will boot you from this blog.

    That angry little gal needs some love….who wants to pork a fat chick

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