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Hue Jackson in mid-season form

By Steve Corkran
Wednesday, July 27th, 2011 at 3:47 pm in Oakland Raiders.

Raiders first-year coach Hue Jackson arrived early for his news conference Wednesday, stayed late, and displayed all the enthusiasm we have become accustomed to seeing since he arrived last season.

First and foremost, Jackson said, he wants the Raider Nation to know that “we are back.” From there, Jackson launched into a 26-minute question-and-answer session with the media that featured several newsworthy items, some clarifications and plenty of reiteration on themes he has hammered on since he replaced Tom Cable in mid-January.

“Oh wow, oh wow,” Jackson said. “Is this fun or what. First of all before  I say anything I have to say something to Raider Nation. Raider Nation, we are back. Back in business, back to playing football. I’m excited, our players are excited.”

 Jackson said rookie running back Taiwan Jones signed a contract Wednesday. He added that the other draftees are close to signing and could be in the fold by the time the first practice arrives at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday.

The first two days of practice won’t entail much more than conditioning, walking through plays and some light practice. Things will heat up Saturday.

By then, the Raiders will have most of their players either signed or on the field. Jackson confirmed that the Raiders signed 14 undrafted free agents (the players will be listed in a subsequent post).

“We were able to put 14 new young men on this team, and I’m excited to watch them compete,” Jackson said. “I’m excited to watch them. Obviously, practice time is cut, these guys need to rise up quickly and show their work, because opportunities are going to be a little bit different than they have been in the past. I’m anticipating somebody emerging out of this group to play some pretty good football.”

 Jackson said that he has spoken with cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha and tight end Zach Miller since the lockout ended. He remains hopeful that one or both will be re-signed. Both players are unrestricted free agents who can negotiate with any team.

“By Friday, we all will know exactly what is going on,” Jackson said. “I’ve said a number of times, I’d love to have all of them back. I’m not sure exactly how that’s going to go. We’re talking to everybody. I know everyone wants to know, ‘Are you talking to this guy or that guy?’ We’re talking to everybody. If there’s a guy that’s out there that is free, trust me I’ve called him and I’ve talked to him. …

“Right now, you hear all the different things. This guy is going here, this guy is going there. Some of that is true. That’s the way it works. But we also know nothing can be signed until Friday. A lot of things can happen between now and then. There’s still several hours left in this thing called free agency before people start to sign on the dotted line.”

 Cable called Jason Campbell the unquestioned starter during his first interview in Napa last season. Cable and Jackson agreed that it was best to bench Campbell at halftime of Oakland’s second regular-season.

Yet, Jackson is every bit as decisive as Cable was that Campbell is the guy for the long haul.

“Say that one more time,” Jackson said, when a TV reporter asked who the starting quarterback is going to be. ”You did not ask me that question. He did not ask that question out here today. Does anybody no know who the starting quarterback is of the Raiders? Are you kidding me? Doesn’t he wear No. 8? His name is Jason Campbell. He is the starting quarterback of the Raiders. Period! Any other questions?”

Just for good measure, Jackson once again took the time to remind people that being good is a foreign concept to him.

“We’re going to create something here that’s great,” Jackson said. “I am not interested in being good. I am interested in being great.”

Count wide receiver Louis Murphy as one of the many who on the importance of the Raiders re-signing Miller and Asomugha:

“Very important. He’s a big contributor. Hopefully we get him and Nnamdi. I don’t know how hard that’s going to be, but hopefully we can get both of those guys back and a lot of the other veteran players, too, like Michael Huff, Bush. Those are two guys that helped us win.”

On the prospect of the Raiders adding a veteran receiver such as the Cincinnati Bengals Chad Johnson if he gets released:

“I mean, it wouldn’t hurt to have him. It wouldn’t hurt to have Ochocinco or any of those veteran guys. T.O. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t really matter. But I think with the guys that we do have here, I feel like we’ll be fine, I feel like we’ll be able to produce and make plays.”

Cooper Carlisle said he is under the impression that he will be the Raiders starting right guard once again.

“As far as I know,” Carlisle said. “We haven’t had a lot of contact, so we don’t know everything, but as far as I know that’s the plan.”

Wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey said that he and other Raiders receivers got a jump on things because quarterback Jason Campbell got an opportunity to huddle with Jackson during a brief break in the lockout.

“Right when the season ended, Jason had a chance to meet with coach Jackson and get some things in so when he met with him, he already knew what was going on, he knew what he wanted us to be, so we just listened to him and just took it from there.”

Running back Darren McFadden showed up in Napa with the look of a man who hasn’t missed a day of workouts since last season ended. Perhaps, then, it comes as no surprise that he predicted big things for himself this year, one year after his breakout season.

“I try to just keep my goals to myself and just set them for myself and go out there and accomplish them. But I have big goals set for this year.”

Raiders cornerbacks coach Rod Woodson, who retired from the Raiders in 2003 and is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, said he would love to have Asomugha under his tutelage. However, he is prepared to move forward with the players he has if Asomugha signs elsewhere.

“I got to coach the guys that I have,” Woodson said. “When you got great players, it makes coaching a little big easier. I wish Nnamdi all the best. He’s my guy. I really like Nnamdi as a person. He’s going to have to do what’s best for him, and we’re going to have to do what’s best for us as the Raiders.”

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  • Bauce Rules

    BAUCE!

  • http://www.jerryisatwit.com MistaBrown

    Naw our Qb has been lackluster. The O-line has been shaky. The Wr’s have been flat out garbage. Collectively all 3 areas need to improve.

    Braylon would at least command some respect from the db’s and the defense. He’s a threat like him or not. DHB threat? Haha Murphy threat? lol Ford is getting there lets see what he does his 2nd year. Chaz is not even in the conversation.

  • http://www.jerryisatwit.com MistaBrown

    Rod Woodson, bring it!

  • Dr. Hunter S. Thompson

    Long live Hue.

  • http://www.jerryisatwit.com MistaBrown

    DMAC!

    Running back Darren McFadden showed up in Napa with the look of a man who hasn’t missed a day of workouts since last season ended.

  • Just Fire Baby

    Guys who have started over 100 career games on the O-line aren’t dime a dozen!!!

    Carlisle represents a quality starter, and versatility if/when Campbell-Loper flop.

  • Bauce Rules

    JC your starter! Take that Ninerwoman49 and shove it u fkin btch!

  • SharkCatcher

    BEAT DENVER MONDAY NIGHT

  • Bauce Rules

    Braylon is a lil bz….but he can play better than our wrs

  • RaiderRetribution

    Raiders will win the AFC West in 2011!

  • Bauce Rules

    Raaaaaaiiiiidddddeeeerrrrsssss!

  • http://repealitnow.org MistaBrown

    The end.
    ___

    Bauce Rules Says:
    July 27th, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    Braylon is a lil bz….but he can play better than our wrs

  • Bauce Rules

    RaiderRetribution…..yes and beyond!

  • RaiderRetribution

    Mr. Carlisle paid too much to be a backup.

  • Just Fire Baby

    Braylon is facing suspension and is known to go into major funks for awhile.

    We could give him big money, for 35 catches and 500 yards next year.

    Not worth it. Building a great team takes patience, not just throwing money at the Braylon Edwards’ of the NFL because you need a WR.

  • http://repealitnow.org MistaBrown

    If DHB doesn’t break out in some serious fashion he will be a dog catcher next year like Craigs Dad in Next Friday.

  • http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/526101/AlDavis1_medium.jpg KoolKell

    Looks like Nnamdi could be back, afterall.

  • Just Fire Baby

    Mr. Carlisle paid too much to be a backup.

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

    I’m sure he would restructure if he doesn’t win the starting gig.

    Put him in with Bruce Campbell, Loper and whoever else and see who the best two guards are.

    In a shortened camp, vets are going to have a major advantage over the youngsters, at all positions, including RG.

  • 89052RAIDER

    vegas says Raiders over/under 7 wins. That is optimistic if we start two rookie Ol and DHB.

  • http://repealitnow.org MistaBrown

    lol @ McNabb to Vikings to mop up after Favre

  • JLofty

    HueJ!!!!!! Hue Jackson is a man you can get behind. I believe they call that leadership.
    Now what is Wylie going to do about that OLine?

  • PurpleDrank81

    Too juiced for this season to start.. We have to bring some veteran presence in on O-Line because starting a Center rookie without Veteran Guards is going to be nasty. I’d love to sign Ocho but I still have faith in Chaz yeah he’s had some bad breaks and if he has 1 more injury ridden season he will be retired but the kid can ball..( HE’s also money on beer Pong)… Denarius Moore will surprise some people he has nice hands and speed. He can be kind of a knucklehead so Hue has to work on that. Plus moore has never had a decent QB. Very confident in this team not very confident in our CB’s…. CJ37 is not a starter

    P.S. Just got my first gig as an High School Offensive Line Coach

  • Just Fire Baby

    Bruce just tweeted to Bengal fans to get “ready to rock ‘n roll. Can’t wait for this great opportunity”.

    Bruce = unquestioned starter??

  • 89052RAIDER

    Two rookie OL’s and Campbell on the OL…Scary with DHB and his oven mits on as our #1 WR,

  • http://repealitnow.org MistaBrown

    Has Chad tweeted his thoughts on Bruce yet or will he wait until Aug 30th to blow him up?

  • Just Fire Baby

    Ocho to Bruce via twitter:

    “Congrats man, I’ll see you in the morning. McDonalds on me young grasshopper”

    Sounds like Bruce is starting, and Ocho is happy and not going anywhere.

  • PurpleDrank81

    Chad has tweeted on Bruce said see ya in the morning Mcdonalds on me Young Grasshopper….Fareal thats what he said

  • PurpleDrank81

    JFB got there alil faster than me

  • http://repealitnow.org MistaBrown

    Chad will change his tune after Bruce short hops him 40 yards down field and cost him a TD celebration.

  • http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/526101/AlDavis1_medium.jpg KoolKell

    If Carlisle doesn’t win the starting job in camp, he could be cut. But we can’t hand starting jobs on the O-line to rookies.

    Nobody here knows anything about Bruce Campbell or Barksdale.

  • manmarquez

    Last year was the takeoff of our Running Backs.
    This year the takeoff of our Wide Receivers, Campbell will look good.

  • Just Fire Baby

    Cincy’s QB play the last few years has been awful!!!

    Any WR would be happy that the team brought in a different vet and a talented rookie.

    Carson Palmer has been garbage for about 4 years running.

  • Haters going to hate

    LaConfora is saying the Raiders could be suitors for Cromartie

  • Twocents

    “I am not interested in being good. I am interested in being great.”

    Hue, I like the rhetoric. But you’re going to have to be the reincarnation of Lombardi to get it done in Oakland. Good luck, I am rooting for you.

  • Just Fire Baby

    If Darren is 225 and has huge goals….and Campbell is going to emerge…..and Taiwan is going to be a contributing rook…….

    How many touches, realistically, can Bush anticipate this season?

    Not saying don’t sign him because he is restricted and we can slap a tender on him and have him for probably around 2million. But what should we expect from him if Darren is healthy and balling all year?

  • Mistic1 Tha Supavillain

    “Say that one more time,” Jackson said, when a TV reporter asked who the starting quarterback is going to be. ”You did not ask me that question. He did not ask that question out here today. Does anybody no know who the starting quarterback is of the Raiders? Are you kidding me? Doesn’t he wear No. 8? His name is Jason Campbell. He is the starting quarterback of the Raiders. Period! Any other questions?” HU JACK CITY!!!!!!!!

    Now what impostors

  • 89052RAIDER

    Hue Jackson is a true leader of men. Cable is just not a leader and he did evoke confidence. Although we have roster issues, I do believe Al hired the right man to lead us.

  • meeze

    RAMS 9-7
    CARDINALS 9-7
    SEAHAWKS 7-9
    NINERS 6-10

  • meeze

    FALCONS 10-6
    BUCS 10-6
    SAINTS 8-8
    PANTHERS 4-12

  • meeze

    PACKERS 10-6
    LIONS 9-7
    BEARS 8-8
    VIKINGS 4-12

  • meeze

    EAGLES 11-5
    COWBOYS 9-7
    GIANTS 9-7
    REDSKINS 3-13

  • meeze

    RAMS 9-7
    CARDINALS 9-7
    SEAHAWKS 7-9
    NINERS 6-10

    ********************************
    RAMS 9-7
    CARDINALS 8-8
    SEAHAWKS 7-9
    NINERS 6-10
    SORRY

  • meeze

    RAIDERS 10-6
    CHARGERS 9-7
    CHEIFS 8-8
    BRONCOS 5-11

  • meeze

    JETS 12-4
    PATS 10-6
    DOLPHINS 6-10
    BILLS 2-14

  • meeze

    COLTS 11-5
    TEXANS 9-7
    JAGS 8-8
    TITANS 7-9

  • noteasilyimpressed

    Ausberry and Taiwan Jones have signed contracts.

  • meeze

    RAVENS 11-5
    STEELERS 10-6
    BROWNS 7-9
    BUNGLES 2-14

  • RaiderRetribution

    Raiders are starting a rookie center named Mr. Wisniewski.

    Raiders’ 3rd round out of only God and Al knows where, earned the starting LT & Center position last year as a rookie.

    Raiders will have double digit victoties 11-5, finish 5-1 in the AFC West.

  • meeze

    OK PER RAIDERRETRIBUTION I WILL CHANGE MY PREDICTION

    RAIDERS 11-5
    CHARGERS 9-7
    CHEIFS 8-8
    BRONCOS 5-11

  • meeze

    RAIDERS 11-5
    CHARGERS 9-7
    CHEIFS 8-8
    BRONCOS 5-11