Raiders news, notes, P.M. link


News, notes and quotes from Tuesday’s morning session, with updates from the afternoon practice available on my Twitter page:

— Granted it’s easy to get carried away with seeing a few pinpoint passes after the way the passing game has gone on the Redwood Middle School field the past few years, and Colt Brennan’s chances of making the Raiders probably aren’t good.

But the guy has a knack for completions, having made virtually every throw imaginable in college at Hawaii.

Any thoughts that Brennan couldn’t throw a deep ball were dispelled by a sideline streak to Todd Watkins that was as pretty as any pass by any quarterback all training camp.

The ball traveled 40 to 50 yards in the air, and hit Watkins in stride with Stanford Routt helpless to do anything about it.

“He does a pretty good job of being able to put it on receivers and lead ‘em, and put it up over the top,’’ Cable said. “He has a knack for some of those things.’’

“I’ve played football since the fourth grade,’’ Brennan said. “You put me on a football field, there’s nothing uncomfortable about it.’’

With Charlie Frye out with a sore right wrist, Brennan will be the Raiders’ third quarterback against Dallas.

“I think what he’s done is put himself in the game,” Cable said. “He’s got it to a point where we feel like he can go in and hand it off and he’s got a handful of throws he can make and understand.”

— The Raiders practiced in shorts and shells, stressing execution rather than contact and doing some rudimentary Dallas scout work. Cable said the second session would be similar, but more like a walkthrough.

With dinner scheduled for 6 p.m. according to the team itinerary, it should be a short practice.

— Tough moment for rookie defensive tackle Lamarr Houston, who has been playing some fullback in the goal line offense and actually got a chance to catch a pass in the end zone.

The pass hit Houston in the gut and fell incomplete. Houston dropped to the ground, and had the added indignity of safety Hiram Eugene saying to him, `Man, you look so unathletic.’’

— The “free Nnamdi’’ movement continues to gain momentum. Asomugha has been seen in places other than his usual right cornerback position more than at any time since he became an established star in 2006.

“I’ve been outside, both sides,’’ Asomugha said. “It looks like it won’t be a thing that’s selective based off who we’re playing It’s just going to be a thing that we can do whenever we want. It’s a part of the package. And that’s great. It gets me more involved.”

Cable’s explanation: “Some of it is just being able to get him comfortable on both sides because of all the slot formations and . . . all those things you have to do, and some of it has to do with him maybe lining up on the best receiver type thing.’’

— Cable ruled the following players out of the Dallas game _ Jacoby Ford (quadriceps), Paul Hubbard (hamstring), Chaz Schilens (foot), Luke Lawton (Concussion), Darren McFadden (hamstring), Frye (wrist), Bruce Gradkowski (groin) and Jason Richardson (knee).

McFadden said his injury occurred Saturday, that it was his first hamstring pull since running a 100-meter dash in high school with no warmup, and that it wasn’t serious.

“You want to make sure it’s all the way healthy before you do because it’s a hamstring, something that can nag you for a whole year,’’ McFadden said.

— Starting quarterback Jason Campbell is eager to get on a regular schedule of having downtime meetings with receivers during the season away from the facility to get closer as a team as well as go over pass routes.

“You can sit there for 30 minutes and just talk about things in life or just talk about what you enjoy about what we do before you actually get a to start just talking about football,’’ Campbell said. “And then you watch the film together, you’re all on the same page.”

Campbell on how to deal with young receivers and dropped passes: “You have to learn everybody’s individual personalities. Because the last thing you want is for a guy to go into a tank or think it’s the worst thing ever because of it. There are different approaches that you take.’’

Campbell on the rookie class: “They quickly stick their head in there, they’re quick to get into a fight with someone. They can’t sing a lick but they can hit.’’

— Famed NFL talent analyst Gil Brandt of the NFL Network was at practice Monday and Tuesday taping interviews for Sirius Satellite Radio along with host Vic Carucci.

Brandt said he’s very impressed with the Raiders draft class and the first guy he brought up is someone I haven’t mentioned more than one or twice _ sixth-round pick Travis Goethel, a middle linebacker from Arizona State.

The former Cowboys personnel exec had lunch with Al Davis Monday, said he talks to him once a week, and said Davis was “cautiously optimistic’’ about the 2010 season.

— There’s been a Thomas Howard sighting _ he was running with the first team in the goal line defense, an interesting alignment (on Tuesday, anyway) because it didn’t have a true cornerback.

The primary pass defenders were Tyvon Branch, Mike Mitchell and Howard. Also on the field were Kamerion Wimbley, Houston, Tommy Kelly, Desmond Bryant, Rolando McClain, Trevor Scott and Ricky Brown.

— Alex Daniels, the defensive end-turned-fullback who will get playing time against the Cowboys, plans on savoring the moment at Cowboys Stadium _ before he starts knocking heads.

“I’m going to be in Dallas, in Jerry’s world, that stadium, and just be excited to be there, and when the whistle blows, that’s when the pads hit and then after that, you go ahead, and it’s just all football again,’’ Daniels.

Chances are Daniels won’t be in the game at the same time as Cowboys premiere outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware, but hey, a guy can dream.

“If I’ve got to push DeMarcus down the field 20 yards, I’m going to keep pushing him, I’m going to keep pushing him, I’m going to keep pushing him, until the whistle blows, then I’ll stop, then I’ll come back to the huddle and I’ll do it again,’’ Daniels said. “Whatever they need me to do, I’m going to do it.’’

Daniels, showing his rookie colors as well as not yet knowing his employer’s general philosophy, even likes doing interviews.

“The media is what makes you,’’ Daniels said, offering to furnish donuts for reporters should he make the roster. “It’s a blessing to be with y’all.’’

Careful Alex, they’ll ask for your playbook.

–Late update _ Michael Bush disclosed on his Twitter page that Justin Fargas will sign with Denver.

Bush’s Tweet:“Big Ups to my boy Justin Fargas. He about to sign with the Broncos. Congrats man.”

— According to the transactions on Raiders.com, wide receiver Jonathan Holland was placed on injured reserve after clearing waivers while injured.


Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer