Curtain draws on Napa camp


News and notes from the Raiders last training camp practice in Napa:

— Training camp 2009 ended with Todd Watkins making a sprawling catch in the end zone to culiminate a successful two-minute drill by the second team offense.

It was third-and-9, Jeff Garcia had driven the offense to the 26-yard line and 17.8 seconds remained.

Defensive coordinator John Marshall yelled, “No TDs!”

Sorry, John.

For the most part, however, coach Tom Cable thinks he and his staff got what they wanted out of 33 practice sessions behind the Napa Marriott.

“We hd a goal coming up here, and that was to leave here a better team, closer, and I think we’ve accompished that,” Cable said.

— Practice was in shorts and shells and wasn’t as grueling as Wednesday’s two and a half-hour marathon, but it was once again a very good practice for the Raiders passing game.

The JaMarcus Russell over the last two days bears no resemblence to the Russell who left footballs strewn all over the field during OTAs and minicamps, or even the Russell of last week who kept finding Nate Clements instead of his own teammates.

There was Russell hitting lobbing a completion to Michael Bush against Napoleon Harris, Russell finding Louis Murphy wide open over the middle, or throwing a dart into the corner of the end zone to Darrius Heyward-Bey against Justin Miller.

In red zone team drills and seven-on-sevens, it looked the way a passing offense is supposed to look against scout team defenders _ lots of touchdowns and completions.

“You have guys that are attacking the ball and making the catch look easy,” Russell said. “We’re getting there. It’s a process and we’re going through it together. It’s not like it’s one person’s job. Everybody’s job has to be done in order to get there. We’re on our way.”

— In the drive before Garcia led the Raiders to a touchdown in a two-minute drill to end camp, Russell came up short in his only crack at the first team defense.

The situation? Raiders at teh 20-yard line, and the scoreboard reads 10-7 with 1:32 to play.

Russell immediately connected with Zach Miller on a beatufil downfield seam route for 30 yards to the 50.

He then missed Miller, was incomplete on a deep pass to Johnnie Lee Higgins and then scrambled for five yards on third-and-10.

An illegal motion penalty on Higgins pushed the ball back five yards, and Huff’s final pass was incomplete, “Ball game,” shouted free safety Michael Huff.

— The first team defense, predictably, did much better against the scout team offense, with Nnamdi Asomugha and Tyvon Branch both getting interceptions.

— Those who did not practice included Chaz Schilens (foot), Khalif Barnes (ankle), John Wade (stinger), Justin Fargas (hamstring), Matt Shaughnessy (foot), Isaiah Ekejiuba (shoulder), Kirk Morrison (elbow) and Mike Mitchell (hamstring). The new addition was rookie linebacker Slade Norris (calf).

Cable assessed Mitchell’s progress this way: “It is getting better, but it has been slow to get there this time.”

So slow that Mitchell has never even been seen off to the side, working with a trainer in agility drills. It’s essentially been a complete shutdown.

— Wide receiver Javon Walker, who seemed to ease into his first session, got in some good work during his second practice, looking better that at any time during training camp a year ago, when he was called out by Lane Kiffin and talked of retiring and giving his bonus back.

“He’s a little rough with some of his assignments, but that’s normal,” Cable said. “He hasn’t had a lot of work, but he’s able to clear that because he’s had so much experience. He’s a really bright guy, and the net time you see him do it, he’s fixed the mistake from the time before. We’ll expect him to go after it Saturday.”

— Russell will play most if not all of the first half Saturday against New Orleans, with Garcia playing most of the second half. Cable said some starters could go into the third quarter.

— Cable continues to be coy as to his plans for the three-headed monster at running back. Will he try split the pie three ways, or will he go heavier with two backs, keeping a third in reserve in case of injury.

Cable noted improvement in Fargas’ receiving skills.

Michael Bush will get the start against New Orleans.

— If the Raiders were interested in Duke Preston, who they had at the facility for a visit in the offseason, the Dallas Cowboys beat them to the punch.

Wade, the backup center, has missed considerable time with a stringer.

— Former Raiders John Parrella, with ex-Raiders Rod Woodson and Josh Taves on his staff, will be head coach for the first varsity football game in the history of Valley Christian High School in Dublin.

— Interested to hear “professional liar” Chris Mortensen of ESPN tell Murph and Mac on KNBR this morning the Raiders were the second best team in the AFC West and could be a surprise team this year.

Is he to be believed?

— While Asomugha was being interviewed, Barnes walked past and had a request.

“Buy me a car, Nam,” Barnes said to the $45.3 million man. “An s500.”

If Barnes had stuck around, he could have at least had a No. 21 jersey. The cornerback had a handful of them and passed them out to some fans who were invited guests on the last day of camp.

Coming later today: Camp highlights and disappointments.


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • If Al Davis were retired, we could jaw all day about his NFL influences, Bill Walsh etc.

    But he aint, and that long ago bullshyt is not relevant today.

    The Raiders have had 6 Playoff Appearances in the last 20 years.

    Been gouged on the ground the last 6 years

    Gave up 275 yds on the ground in the last game.

  • tazZraider

    its time to shut your fukin idiot ass up now richochet and i bet you gonna come with a lame ass comeback.

    bill walsh coaching tree:holmgren,fassel,paul hackett, sam wyche,george seifert,dennis green,andy reid, mike sherman,ray rhodes,mariucci,john fox, mike mccarthy,john gruden,mike shanahan,tony dungy,jeff fisher,mike tice,brian billick, brad childress,marty morhinweg,bill callahan,gary kubiak,jack del rio,mike smith,bruce coslet,mike mularkey,lovie smith, mike tomlin, rod marinelli, and john harbaugh.

    this list would probably never had existed if bill walsh had never learned the vertical offense under Davis which he was trained in and eventually made his own similar offense the west coast. if walsh never learned from davis bill walsh legacy wouldn’t have been the same.

    Now shut the fuk up richochet and let us raider fans be excited for our bright future whiler niners bites our dust.

  • Norco Bob

    Kell you sure are a crybaby.

  • raideredoutL.A.

    come back

  • priesttj

    Yep! guess all the haters were right Russell’s fat, lazy, stupid doesn’t want to be great. Problems with his ‘BRAIN’ still love that one. Doesn’t study film accuracy problems that can’t get better.

    Will never be a leader, too nonchalant. All arm no head.

    As I said by midseason the league will know that the Raiders have one of the most dominant young QB’s in the game.

    Also it’s time I think that we can allow DHB his own book to write his own story. We haven’t played the 3rd preseason game yet and the writers are liningup to get on the bandwagon.

    What was that! did you say where’s Crabtree? Oh! WHAT ABOUT CRABTREE? Ummm! what about him?

  • tazZraider

    kool kell whatta you talkin about? that shit is relevant because al is the one that trained walsh in vertical offense and walsh learned and formed his own offense that he trained countless of other coaches which a lot of them use today. That shit is relevant dogg.

  • priesttj

    WHAT THE HELL!?! is a Crabtree anyway?

  • Norco Bob

    TJ I was told if you call fitz and brooks again Gary is done with you forever.

  • Terrapin

    Man ..watching Eagles vs Jags …I must say, compared to the Raiders these teams look sloooowwww.

    Vick looks rusty. But what can you expect. I feel good for the guy though. Its good to get your life back together.

  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder

    FYI for Whiner fans. The Debartolos and his family past and present are and were mobsters.
    Quiche and wine my *ss.

  • Norco Bob

    Eddie D is a mobster?…lol…he turned states evidence to feds in Lousiana…some mobster. lol

  • Norco Bob

    Jed is a mobster…lol…candy ass frat boy…some mobster. lol

  • 4evaRaider

    I sure wish those pit-bulls could get their life back together

  • Terrapin

    Well, potentially there goes the Jags season. Gerrard one the ground holding his neck – ….preseason! y

  • exlaraiderseasonticketholder

    Norco Bob,
    Just read the article. I know it has no pictures but really try to concentrate. LOL

    Going to watch some preseason.

  • Norco Bob

    eddie d turned states evidence…nuff said

  • Norco Bob

    but i guess to an idiot like you hes al capone. lol

  • priesttj

    The DeBartolo’s are known criminals. Some of the bust on Eddie D Jr. are legendary in the West bay area, swept under the carpet. Some of the stuff makes what Vick did look like tiddly winks. He has never done a day in jail. When they ran that campaign for the new stradium is also legendary signing up dead people.

    Eddie D was lowest of scumbags.

  • Eddie D has 5 SB rings.
    Al Davis has 3, nuff said. 😉

  • Norco Bob

    Whats your point kell?

  • Norco Bob

    Is it,..some owners buy rings and others earn them?

  • Norco Bob

    Eddie d was given a team, given cash to blow,…all that,..some football guy.

  • Norco Bob

    and then they get kicked out of league and have to give team to little sis,..ya, eddie d is pretty impressive kell.

  • Norco Bob

    kell are you aware eddie d needs league permission to attend a game at candlestick?

  • Norco Bob

    which owners in hall of fame?

  • Norco Bob

    buying 5 rings doesnt get you in canton kell, sorry.

  • Norco Bob

    bil lwalsh deserves ALL THE CREDIT for niner success,..eddie d got what he deserved,…kicked out of league.

  • I thought the bottom line with “you people” were Super Bowl rings.

    Well, Eddie D has 5.
    Al Davis has 3.

    Now, if the Raiders give up more than 150 yds on the ground Saturday, this year will be like the last 6.

  • Norco Bob

    Kell, you are a very limited man,..you cant seem to live beyond the past 6 years,…all that matters to you is the last 6 years,…thats too bad for you bud.

  • priesttj

    KK, take your grumpy ass over to the other side of Bay. Tired of your constant dumbass griping, everyone knows the past 6 years are horrrible we don’t need to be reminded every 5 minutes by you. Personally I’m excited about the next 6years.

    And so is everybody else it seems except you. So go somewhere else where you can be happy.

  • Norco Bob

    Poor MR,..now off to use other name in here,..he has a few, but the passwords are complicated,..takes a while ya MR?…lol

  • Norco Bob


  • Norco Bob

    TJ,..that Kell imposter is MR.

  • And I don’t live in the past 6 years regarding Raider football. I will judge Al Davis by his entire body of work, and he spent the first 20 years with the Raiders doing everything right. Since then, he’s become reclusive and egotistical, and the team has paid. His enemy used to be the league and other teams, now it’s his own employees. The only glimpse of the 1963-1985 Al Davis I’ve seen in recent memory is when he hired Gruden in 1998. Other than that, he’s been an entirely different person. No longer a man who wants to win. Now just a man who wants those who question his power or expertise to lose. The past 6 years are just one part of his long career, but it’s still significant. Since we don’t have a GM and Al Davis the de facto GM, the 6 years is worthy of a conversation because no GM in professional sports would still have a job after 6 failed seasons. You can appreciate what Al Davis has done in the past, have ideas and points to make about the future, and still bring up the obvious fact that this football team is stuck with the same GM who’s failed the past 6 years, and probably won’t win until he retires.

  • Norco Bob

    Seek mental health care MR. lol

  • Norco Bob

    Next time you consider suicide MR,..which I bet is daily,..go for it,..nobody will even know youre gone. lol

  • Norco Bob

    MR,…come by our tailgate saturday,..brien will be there,..lots of booze,..pot…bar b q,..are you allowed out of the house on weekends?

  • priesttj

    Gotcha Bob!

  • priest, rather it’s politics or sports pr, telling people they’re unhappy and to “cheer up”, etc., is the slogan of liars and shills trying to deflect criticism. To take a phrase from Norco Bob, you’re not fooling anyone.

  • Norco Bob

    Lol,..poor little mr,..all upset again. lol

  • Norco Bob

    MR,..I forgot,..hows things been for you the last six years again?…lol

  • You’re right, Norco. I should kill myself because I don’t go to Raider games and drink with you and Brien. There’s no better cure for depression than pissing away a couple of hundred bucks on one of the worst teams in the NFL, and drowning yourself in pills and booze. Just cheers people right up. To be honest, Bob, reading your comments, I’m convinced you’re the one who’s bordering suicide. And I’ll tell you, DON’T do it. Get help first. Because your rock bottom is coming.

  • Norco Bob

    Aw,..MR crying now?….pooooor little baby. lol

  • Norco, yes, I’m upset. You win. What else?

  • Yes, I’m crying, Norco. I need my mommy. What else, coolest, hippest Raider fan in the world?

  • Norco Bob

    I will see you later MR,..and you will be here, it doesnt matter what name you use, we all know when its you,..cya! lol

  • I will be here, Norco, because I have nothing better to do. You, on the other hand, will be in an RV with Dave and Brien driving to Cancun. you’re my hero.

  • Why is it Moderator that Narco Bob can post all day, and I not allowed to even defend myself?

    You,re using that error message thingy to discrinate

  • # Norco Bob Says:
    August 27th, 2009 at 4:57 pm

    Is it,..some owners buy rings and others earn them?


    No, I think his point is that some owners buy rings, while others hire title-less, ghost GMs like Ron Wolf to get them rings, then pretend they never existed and take credit for their work. At least DeBartolo doesn’t pretend to be something he’s not in regards to running an NFL franch.

  • Richochet

    tazZraider Says:
    August 27th, 2009 at 4:04 pm
    before you start to keep on bashin brien the niners will be a sorry team if your greatest coach bill walsh hadn’t worked for al davis as a raiders ASSISTANT. Here I’ll show you
    “Walsh began his pro coaching career in 1966 as an assistant with the AFL’s Oakland Raiders. As a Raider assistant, Walsh was trained in the vertical passing offense favored by Al Davis”
    i bet you gonna come up with somethin stupid just like when peoiple i was ask you good questions that keep you moded but then you come up with stupid ass remarks.
    I ALREADY addressed this.
    Can you read?
    Is it the comprehension part that stifles ya?
    Sid Gillman.
    Ever hear of him?
    Walsh has made it was Gillman and Brown that he learned about the NFL, NOT Al Davis.
    Walsh was asst running back coach, for the Raiders, in 1966.
    Running back, lol..not qb.
    John Rauch was the head coach of the Raiders in 66.
    Al Davis had NO IDEA who Bill Walsh was, and likely never talked directly to him.
    Walsh was directly under John Rauch.
    And what Walsh learned from Al Davis is THE SAME THING JOHN RAUCH LEARNED..that it was the absolute worst way to run an organization.