124

Gradkowski keeps grinding

A few observations from Raiders quarterback Bruce Gradkowski, a guest on KNBR’s (680-AM) “Razor and Mr. T” show:

Tom Cable’s status: “We’re going to work every day like it’s the same. Coach Cable is in there working, and that’s all I care about. I don’t look into details. I just go in there, take care of my own business, and whoever is there I’m going to work with and we’re going to be just fine.”

If he’s the antithesis of JaMarcus Russell in terms of work ethic and is that what won his teammates over: “I think ti was the way I’ve been raised. I’ve known no different than being a blue-collar guy, to work hard, and you’re going get what you deserve and I believe that . . . I’m not worried about how other people do their jobs. I’m just worried about being a professional, taking care of my own business, and when the opportunity comes, taking advantage of it.”

His status with the Raiders as an RFA: I haven’t officially signed with them yet. They offered a second-round tender and so it’s still free agency going on, so there’s other teams out there, but in my heart, I want to be in Oakland. I believe I’ll be in Oakland and I’d like to be here for years to come. I just feel a good presence here.”

Whether he’s been assured of open competition at QB: “I think that’s the way it should take place, and I think that’s the way it will take place, and I’m looking forward to it. I’m just excited to get this opportunity.”

What players were saying during the Randy Hanson controversy: “I think the players just have to worry about our job, just coming to work every day and letting that stuff be handled by the people that handle that situation . . . yeah, it’s been unusual, but I think Mr. Davis realy just wants to win, wants the best for his players and he’s trying to get it done. I think right now we have a very good setup in the coaches and players around us and a good team. I hope the fans back us from Day 1, because we can use that, and w need them a part of this year and to be a part of this thing when we turn it around.”

If he needed a volume button on his helmet radio when the excitable Jon Gruden was coach: “I needed a mute button, honestly.”

The Raiders, not surprisingly, had nothing to do with arranging the interview. As a general rule, they treat offseason publicity as if its radioactive waste and are particularly sensitive to host Ralph Barbieri’s criticisms of Al Davis.

It only happened because co-host Tom Tolbert ran into a friend of Gradkowski’s who was pushing publicity for a Pop Warner football team in Walnut Creek. Gradkowski wanted to further the cause and go on the air.

Interesting to note that although that when Barbieri went into one of his patented run-on questions which included harsh (and legitimate) criticisms of Russell, Gradkowski made no effort to defend Russell or say if he’s been working alongside him in the building.

A link to the entire 20-minute interview can be found here.

The world, of course, didn’t end.

Gradkowski was optimistic and sincere, and the Raiders actually got themselves some coverage on the 49ers flagship station _ through no effort of their own.

Other items of note:

– ESPN is reporting tight end Anthony Becht, the blocking tight end who visited both the Raiders and 49ers, opted to re-sign with the Arizona Cardinals. It was a one-year deal worth $950,000, so the interest of the Bay Area teams must have been lukewarm at best.

– Gradkowski has been a frequent visitor to the Raiders facility and will continue to do so as he battles for the job as starting quarterback. With restricted free agents such as Elvis Dumervill and Tony Scheffler of Denver declining to attend offseason programs, it will be interesting to see how linebackers Kirk Morrison and Thomas Howard treat the offseason.

They’re not required to attend, and the SportsBusiness Journal reported awhile back some agents would advise their clients to stay away as their only form of protest against the changes to free agency in the uncapped year.

– Bad news for the Raiders and “former” Raider Justin Fargas.

With the Chiefs signing Jets’ free agent Thomas Jones, Fargas will remain on the job market.

The last two times Jones faced the Raiders as a member of the Jets, he carried 50 times for 280 yards. Now he gets the Raiders twice in a season.

– Former Raiders defensive tackle Chester McGlockton is a coaching intern at Stanford. McGlockton has coached the defensive line at Chabot College in Hayward and did a spring internship last year on Lane Kiffin’s staff at Tennessee.

  • Share/Bookmark

Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • Stabler76

    I’d still like us to sign Troy Smith though to give us a 2nd viable option at the QB position.

    1) Bruce
    1a) Troy Smith
    3) John Skelton

    ————————————————–

    How about an open competion between Russell and Red Skelton? — Wait Red Skelton is dead— lucky for Russell

  • Ghost to the Post

    Good morning all. You have got to love The Bruce. He really is the better man. I just wish Jamarcus had half his drive and work ethic.

  • inonewordraider

    1. Bradford-Rams: see Falcons and Lions
    2. Okung-Lions: protect Stafford
    3. Suh-Bucs: best player avail w/ lots of needs
    4. Williams-Skins: protect QB
    5. Bulaga-Chiefs: will reach for need
    6. Mccoy-Hawks: best player avail, could upgrade @ DT
    7. Berry-Browns: best player avail, could upgrade @ S
    8. Pierre-Paul-Raiders: did 17 backflips @ combine

  • HairyBush

    According to Rotoworld.com RB Larry Johnson has a visit scheduled with the Raiders later this week.

  • HairyBush

    Larry Johnson most have Al Davis salivating lol

  • RaiderDebo

    Einste1n Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 9:27 am
    Silver-n-Smac:

    No need to get defensive and personal. Like I said, we all have our personal favorite Raiders, and it’s obvious yours is JaMarcus. It’s cool, but you don’t need to get so defensive when someone points out his inadequacies. Jeez man. Some of my favorites were Marcus Allen and Tim Brown, and they were surrounded with Silver and Black controversy, but I didn’t care what anyone said about them, they were still my favorites.

    Don’t worry bud, you can still be his fan, don’t take it personal what others say about him.
    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    Dude, I’ll step up now and say JR is my favorite player. The biggest reason I’m a Raider fan is the renegade, us-against-the-world aura the team has around it. And it’s clear to me after taking in everything from the media and what’s been posted on this site by guys like you the past several months that there isn’t a player in the league who exemplifies “me against the world” more than JR. To me, he’s the perfect Raider QB: The guy that everyone, including most Raider fans, love to hate. I love the fact that he’s dismissive of the media. They deserve it as far as I’m concerned. I like the anti-QB outfits and bling after games too. That’s his style and he’s not caving to anyone else’s idea of what a QB should look or sound like. He doesn’t waste time trying to answer his critics and after he’s pulled out victories for us, he doesn’t seek the glory. I can honestly say that I’ve never rooted more for another QB to kick ass. If for no other reason because just about everyone wants him to fail so badly.

  • RaiderDebo

    Gators QB Tim Tebow scored a 22 on his Wonderlic, Jimmy Clausen 23, Colt McCoy 25 and Sam Bradford 36 out of 50, per NFL source.
    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    Interesting.

  • Nnamdi21

    Tom Cable’s status: “We’re going to work every day like it’s the same. Coach Cable is in there working, and that’s all I care about. I don’t look into details. I just go in there, take care of my own business, and whoever is there I’m going to work with and we’re going to be just fine.”

    =========

    Translation: Party line, none of your business.

    If he’s the antithesis of JaMarcus Russell in terms of work ethic and is that what won his teammates over: “I think ti was the way I’ve been raised. I’ve known no different than being a blue-collar guy, to work hard, and you’re going get what you deserve and I believe that . . . I’m not worried about how other people do their jobs. I’m just worried about being a professional, taking care of my own business, and when the opportunity comes, taking advantage of it.”

    ================

    Translation: Party line. Russell? No comment.

    His status with the Raiders as an RFA: I haven’t officially signed with them yet. They offered a second-round tender and so it’s still free agency going on, so there’s other teams out there, but in my heart, I want to be in Oakland. I believe I’ll be in Oakland and I’d like to be here for years to come. I just feel a good presence here.”

    =================

    Translation: No where else would have me. Honestlty, if we’re going to “start” a nobody like Grad why not just keep McClown.

    ====================

    Whether he’s been assured of open competition at QB: “I think that’s the way it should take place, and I think that’s the way it will take place, and I’m looking forward to it. I’m just excited to get this opportunity.”

    ======================

    Translation: again, no where else in the League could I even have a snowballs chance of starting except oakland. partly because I couldn’t make another squad and because Russell’s garbage effort.

    ==========

    What players were saying during the Randy Hanson controversy: “I think the players just have to worry about our job, just coming to work every day and letting that stuff be handled by the people that handle that situation . . . yeah, it’s been unusual, but I think Mr. Davis realy just wants to win, wants the best for his players and he’s trying to get it done. I think right now we have a very good setup in the coaches and players around us and a good team. I hope the fans back us from Day 1, because we can use that, and w need them a part of this year and to be a part of this thing when we turn it around.”

    ====

    Translation: I ain’t sayin sh-ite while I’ve got a shot at starting so party line, Davis is great, Coaches are lovely, kids stay in school say no to drugs, hugs and kisses and I’m out.

    If he needed a volume button on his helmet radio when the excitable Jon Gruden was coach: “I needed a mute button, honestly.”

    =================

    Translation: Gruden’s a freak.

  • Stabler76

    RaiderDebo Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 10:33 am
    JR. To me, he’s the perfect Raider QB:

    just about everyone wants him to fail so badly.

    —————————————————–

    Raider QB needs to win the Super Bowl– and pull out last second wins consistantly

    Nobody here wants a Raiders QB to fail

  • Nnamdi21

    HairyBush Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 10:29 am
    Larry Johnson most have Al Davis salivating lol

    ===========================

    Just put a Raiders don’t have to pay him clause if he smacks anymore women around and DO NOT let him and Cable go to any strip clubs together.

  • Silver-n-Smac

    # Einste1n Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 9:59 am

    Wow, for the guy who uses the name “Silver-n-SMAC” you sure can’t take some “SMAC”, and your ability to talk “SMAC” is questionable at best. Relax sweetheart, I didn’t mean to hurt your feelings.

    ***************************************************

    I have no interest in talkin’ smack with you as all I remember of your tag is that you’re a racist pile of garbage.

    Smack with legit “smackers” is all good.

    Smack from someone as dense as an oak tree is boring.

    Hey, did I tell you I love JaMarcus?

  • Nnamdi21

    Stabler76 Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 10:43 am
    RaiderDebo Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 10:33 am
    JR. To me, he’s the perfect Raider QB:

    just about everyone wants him to fail so badly.

    —————————————————–

    Raider QB needs to win the Super Bowl– and pull out last second wins consistantly

    Nobody here wants a Raiders QB to fail

    ========================

    You’re not reading all of the posts.

  • Nnamdi21

    Ghost to the Post Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 10:20 am
    Good morning all. You have got to love The Bruce. He really is the better man. I just wish Jamarcus had half his drive and work ethic.

    =======================

    The Bruce has half his talent.

  • Ghost to the Post

    Nice translations Nnamdi.

  • Ghost to the Post

    Whatever. I’m sure they would have said the same about Joe Montana and Tom Brady too.

  • RaiderDebo

    Stabler76 Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 10:43 am
    RaiderDebo Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 10:33 am
    JR. To me, he’s the perfect Raider QB:

    just about everyone wants him to fail so badly.

    —————————————————–

    Raider QB needs to win the Super Bowl– and pull out last second wins consistantly

    Nobody here wants a Raiders QB to fail
    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    That’s why I say “just about everyone” Stabler. There’s no question in my mind that there are guys on here who want him to fail. Not sayin you’re one of them. By the way, JR does have a knack for pulling out last-second victories, doesn’t he? Give him time on the rest.

  • Silver-n-Smac

    Man, why the hell does everyone have “favorites” when it comes to our starting QB???

    If we had been a good team the past few years, it’s a worthy topic.

    But we’ve sucked for too long.

    And every single Raider fan should care only about one thing at this point – and that is WINNING.

    If it’s Grad, Russell, or MaddenRaider’s blow-up doll that starts winning games for us, that should make every one of us happy.

    No?

  • Nnamdi21

    Anyone worried about Fargas visiting the Chiefs?

    Tomlinson to the Vikes is that dudes best chance to see a SB. SD is NEVER going to make it. That teams decline is right on time.

  • Silver-n-Smac

    New post.

  • Nnamdi21

    RaiderDebo Says:
    March 10th, 2010 at 10:47 am

    That’s why I say “just about everyone” Stabler. There’s no question in my mind that there are guys on here who want him to fail. Not sayin you’re one of them. By the way, JR does have a knack for pulling out last-second victories, doesn’t he? Give him time on the rest.

    ===================

    No question here either because they’ve SAID it.

    Yes, he does. Always has, thats why I was pissed they pulled him outa that KC game like they did.
    He’d already engineered a game winning drive against that very team once before.

    In college, Russell had 8 come from behind victories in 30 starts.

  • The Judge

    For those of you that are not hip to my man Tate and didn’t want to click the link (NorcoBob), here is the info

    Auburn’s Tate lets NFL combine numbers standEmail Print Share tweetAssociated Press

    AUBURN, Ala. — Ben Tate spent most of Auburn’s pro day watching, relaxing and trying to stay loose.

    The running back was content to let his numbers from the NFL combine stand, and why not? Tate, whose strong senior season was overshadowed by Alabama’s Heisman Trophy winner Mark Ingram, turned in some of the better stats among running backs at the combine in Indianapolis a couple of weeks ago.

    “I think a lot of people were surprised, a lot of the scouts and a lot of you guys in the media,” Tate said Tuesday. “But I knew what I could do the whole time. I’ve been telling y’all I was fast, but no one really wanted to listen to me. My coaches knew, and my family knew.”

    Now the NFL scouts do, too. Tate turned in the third-fastest 40-yard time (4.43 seconds) among running backs, behind C.J. Spiller and Jahvid Best.

    He was second in the vertical leap, broad jump and 20-yard shuttle run. His 26 repetitions of 225 pounds on the bench press tied for tops with Lonyae Miller.

    The solid performance allowed Tate to participate only in position drills at the end of pro day, working with St. Louis Rams running backs coach Sylvester Croom and catching passes from Chris Todd. He said he never considered skipping Auburn’s pro day “because the coaches still want to see you compete.”

    Other players working out for pro scouts on Tuesday included defensive end/linebacker Antonio Coleman, cornerback Walt McFadden and quarterback Chris Todd. Coleman was the only other Auburn player invited to the combine.

    “When you work as hard as I’ve been working, just to go in and do well at the combine, that makes pro day a little bit easier,” Tate said. “I can sit back and watch those other guys doing those drills. I was even recording some of them. I had fun at the beginning but toward the end I had to start getting focused because it was my time doing position drills.”

    Tate rushed for 1,362 yards as a senior in his only year as the fulltime starter, more than doubling the 664 yards he had a junior. Late in the season, he attracted some attention by saying he was the best back in the state, not Ingram.

    Tate still finds motivation from any remaining doubters after leading Auburn in rushing the past three years.

    “It drives me, it keeps me working hard,” he said. “I don’t mind being the underdog. One day the underdog will be on top.

    “I think I’ve been underestimated my whole career.”

    He said he had to trim some weight after Auburn’s win over Northwestern in the Outback Bowl.

    “I lost some of that fat from the bowl game,” Tate said. “I pigged out down there and got to the bowl game and weighed about 220-something. I’ve never been that heavy before.”

    Most projections have Tate as a likely middle-rounds NFL pick, but he preferred not to say what kind of feedback he has been getting or what teams he has already set up meetings with.

    Tate’s strong senior year and combine performance can’t hurt, though.

    “My junior year was a horrible year, and I came in and worked hard this past year and all the hard work has been paying off,” he said. “I had a great combine and today I did a great job. I can’t really complain. The only thing I can control is what I can do and throughout the process so far I think I’ve done pretty well.”

  • Pingback: The RaiderCast | Gradkowski keeps grinding

  • Pingback: Jerry McD: Gradkowski keeps grinding - Oakland Raiders Forum | Message Board - Where the Raider Nation lives!

  • jonesy941

    ole dedicated grads. Jamarcus is prob at home thinking idiot your there working I’m watching cheaters on the couch and we still will split equal time for the stating position.