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Raiders training camp practice highlights, notes and quotes

By Steve Corkran
Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011 at 7:40 pm in Oakland Raiders.

Raiders head coach Hue Jackson wasn’t all smiles after practice Wednesday. There weren’t any “wows” about the tempo, the physical nature of practice or players competing as hard as they can.

No, this was the side of Jackson that the players don’t want to see. And he let them know in no uncertain terms that the way they performed at practice, especially in the latter part, won’t be tolerated.

“That wasn’t a Raider practice,” Jackson said. “I told them that. One thing I am going to always do is be very honest with my team. I took the pads off and all of a sudden we decided we wanted to take some plays down. But that’s OK. You’re going to have some of those days. That’s part of the process. They had a day off, and all of a sudden (their) bodies try to get back. They’re re-adjusting to all of this.”

*Wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey practiced for the first time since training camp opened a week ago. It’s still a mystery as to why he missed the first five practices, with Heyward-Bey and Jackson evasive about the subject.

Heyward-Bey caught balls early on in practice and looked capable of doing everything that his fellow receivers were asked to do. Ultimately, Heyward-Bey sat out the latter part of practice.

Jackson said it’s part of easing him into the mix and being fearful of losing Heyward-Bey for an extended period of time. It’s the same approach Jackson is using with all his players.

That list is growing by the day. Receiver Louis Murphy, guard Cooper Carlisle, fullback James McCluskey, offensive linemen Alan Pelc and Lou (formerly Elias) Eliades joined guard Bruce Campbell, receivers Jacoby Ford and Edward McGee, cornerbacks Joe Porter and Chimdi Chekwa and running back Taiwan Jones on the sideline.

At one point, Jackson ordered his players to take off their pads as a means of ensuring that more players wouldn’t get hurt.

“We’ve got some nicks here and there, and we’re down at some positions now,” Jackson said. “We only had five linebackers. What you do is everything you can do to make sure your team finishes practice. I didn’t want all of the banging at that time, so let’s take them off and continue to get the process that we’re in. The intensity needs to be higher when we do it.”

*Fox Sports’ Adam Caplan reported that the Raiders were prepared to pay former Raiders offensive tackle Mario Henderson $1.7 million. That went out the window when Henderson failed his physical. The Raiders turned around and gave that money to veteran offensive tackle Stephon Heyer, Caplan said.

*NFL Films is missing the boat if it fails to mike up Jackson during training camp or a game.

After running back Darren McFadden stonewalled linebacker Quentin Groves during a pass-protection drill, Jackson launched into one of his classic rants in which he pumps up one side of the ball and challenges the other to meet the challenge.

“Give me some,” Jackson said to McFadden after the sequence ended. “That’s how you hit them. You want some of that (Kamerion) Wimbley?”

On it went, with Jackson goading the defenders into meeting McFadden’s intensity.

*Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell knows a good thing when he sees one. Hence, he never let tight end Zach Miller out of his sights for very long and oftentimes looked for him whenever a play broke down or the pressure got too intense last season.

Miller’s a now member of the Seattle Seahawks, and Campbell is without a security blanket until he finds someone to take Miller’s place.

“It’s a big part of our offense,” Campbell said of Miller. “He was a big target. You don’t ever just replace guys like that. You just have to throw in the young guys that we have, give them an opportunity  to get better each and every day in practice. Things take time. We’ve just got to keep pushing forward, but definitely losing him was a tough loss for this team. Congratulations to him. It’s a big signing and we have to move forward.”

Just before Campbell spoke, free agent tight end David Boss worked out on the field after practice. Campbell knows full well what Boss is capable of, having seen him twice a year when they played against each other in the NFC East from 2007-09.

“He’s a big target,” Campbell said of Boss, a member of the New York Giants the past four seasons. “He’s a big guy. But it all comes down to the coaches decision and if they feel like he fits our offense and the things that we do from that standpoint. He’s a guy, he’s big, he can run, and he’s played in tough games before, so ultimately it will probably come down to how they feel with the guys that we have here and how he fits into our offense.”

*Rookie receiver Denarius Moore is fitting in quite well in the early going. The 6-feet, 195-pounder out of Tennessee put on a clinic during practice Wednesday, with much of his damage coming against No. 1 cornerback Stanford Routt.

“Wow! You guys know I like using that term, wow,” Jackson said. “He’s a tremendous young player. He’s very talented. That young man played at Tennessee and everything he did at Tennessee he’s doing out here on our field. And when you look around, every time you look up, there’s number 17 making a play.

“And I talked to our guys, this game is about performance, and (Moore) comes out every day and he performs. The guys that are able to stay healthy and compete each and every day as well as our guys have, they’re going to have chance to play on this football team.”

Moore fought through tight coverage by Routt on a deep pattern, regained his balance and hauled in a long pass from Campbell that was right on the mark.

A few plays later, Moore cut in toward the middle of the field and snared a laser from Campbell, with Routt trailing the play. He added a short reception later in practice.

Routt shut down Moore on another deep pass, running stride for stride with Moore the entire route.

“Denarius Moore is like another Jacoby,” Campbell said. “He’s like one of those those guys that you pick up late in the draft, and you wonder, ‘How did this guy fall?’ He’s so talented, he’s so athletic. When you see Jacoby, it’s kind of like you have to do a double-glimpse, make sure it’s him or 17.

“The guy’s playing hard. He runs hard in practice, he has that factor, some things you just can’t coach, he has about him. He’s a guy that can add a lot to our offense this year and what we do.”

Moore said he is just doing what the coaches ask of him and trying to make a favorable impression whenever he gets an opportunity.

“I feel like I’m starting to get the groove of things, starting to get the plays down play by play, day by day,” Moore said.

Moore is the only collegiate player who posted two 200-yard receiving games last year, when he starred for Tennessee. It’s that kind of playmaking the Raiders are looking for from their receivers.

Playing in the Southeastern Conference helped prepare Moore for the transition to the NFL, he said.

“As far as SEC, they like to press, a whole bunch of quick corners and quick jams,” Moore said. “As soon as I get here, it’s the same thing. Once I get down with my time with the reps I should just fit right in.”

Jackson credited Moore and Campbell more for being in synch than he faulted Routt for getting beat.

“Well, there’s a lot of things coming at Stanford, too,” Jackson said. “We’re not just sitting there lining up saying, ‘Here, cover us.’ We’re moving around a little bit, we’re making it tough on those guys. But, yeah, I want Stanford competing. I didn’t see anything in that, that I go, ‘Oh, my Gosh, you know, Stanford’s not getting it done.’ I see rhythm and timing of our offense, the quarterback throwing the ball on time in a rhythm and a guy making a play.”

*Samson Satele’s return to the Raiders muddies the situation at center, with rookie Stefen Wisniewski now not a lock to be the starter.

“He has a chance to come play center,” Jackson said of Satele. “This game is about competition and competing and performance. I know everyone said I’ve handed the job to Stefen but, at that time, Stefen was the only center other than (Alex) Parsons on our team.

“So, Sammy’s back, and he’ll get a chance to go in there and line up and play and show what he’s got. He’s a veteran player carrying a lot of games. But, obviously, I’m very happy with Wisniewski. He’s doing an excellent job and, again, that’s going to be fun to see because we’re going to raise the level of play of this whole football team.”

Satele said he received offers from other teams but instructed his agent to get something worked out with the Raiders, if at all possible.

Satele worked at guard during his first NFL training camp, when he was a member of the Miami Dolphins. He wound up at center his rookie season and has played there almost exclusively during his four NFL seasons.

“I’ve got to battle this kid, a second-rounder, and he looks good out there,” Satele said. “My focus is not starting the preseason, but I want to start that Sept. 12 game at Denver and keep it all the way through the season. So, my focus is on beating him out any which way. And if I’m the man, I’m the man. And if he’s the man, he’s the man. Whoever doesn’t win the job, he’ll be the sixth man.”

*Running back Michael Bush is the only one of the 11 players selected by the Raiders in the 2007 NFL draft still on their roster. Quarterback JaMarcus Russell, Miller, receivers Johnnie Lee Higgins and Jonathan Holland, Henderson, defensive ends Quentin Moses and Jay Richardson, defensive backs John Bowie and Eric Frampton and fullback Oren O’Neal are with other teams or out of the league.

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  • Dakota

    Why isn’t a team’s cap number public information?

    NFL.COM should have a link to see all the teams’ current cap positions. Then Jhill and I could get back to arguing about the Mike Brown hiring.

  • J Hill

    Lol…Jwiggle is baaaack….

    —————————————————-

    That was pretty good, huh?

    I’ll say it again then.

    Wimbley agreed to a 5 year contract instead of playing under the franshise tag.

    Going from a 1 year contract to a 5 year contract is restructuring?

    I guess you are right, technically.

    I just thought those were considered extentions.

  • bcz24

    Again 17 million over before we started, a bunch of signings later AND NO CUTS, NOT ONE, and we are now 15 million?
    ***********************
    Well wimbley going from the franchise tag to his long term contract freed up 7 million in cap space this year.

  • bcz24

    Actually going from the franchise tag to a long term contract is considered a brand new contract. Not a restructure or extension.

  • Dakota

    League year set to start at 1pm Pacific….unless the CBA isn’t ratified in time.

  • bcz24

    The problem I have with the cap reporting has been the inconsistancies. In one week I have seen us reported anywhere from $6 million UNDER the cap to $17 million over. Im fairly certain we havent done that many meaningful deals. These guys are essentially just guessing.

  • http://ibbahttp://i380.photobucket.com/albums/oo249/the408RAIDER/749px-I-420svg.png 4evaRaider

    touche lol!

  • JB

    Worrying about the CAP is not our concern. We have no impact on it whatsoever.

    Worrying about the CAP is AD’s concern because he does have impact over it. Additionally, he’s the master of CAP and has been able to do whatever it takes to make it work for the Raiders.

    Don’t pend tie worrying about things that you have no control over. it’s just a waste of time. We already have an expert keeping control of it now.

    Next subject mater please. BTW, what’s the latest on the signing of Boss?

  • J Hill

    regardless of cap consequences

    ——————————————————-

    He did not say that.

  • J Hill

    Then Jhill and I could get back to arguing about the Mike Brown hiring.

    ——————————————————

    There will be plenty of time for that.

    NBA won’t be back for a while.

  • bcz24

    The league year starts at 1pm Pacific today, but teams have until tomorrow at 1pm Pacific to be in compliance with the cap.

    The reported salary floor is NOT being enforced this year.

  • Dakota

    I don’t know how far we are over the cap, but it is pretty clear that we are in a cap pinch, otherwise we are not giving Wimbley a new deal, or extension or whatever you want to call it, which makes him a top five paid LB. And Al is not in the business of letting his home grown talent walk out the door without a fight.

    And Al didn’t have some late life fiscal responsibility gene therapy. If we had the money Al would be spending it. He is 81 years old and looks 105. He knows his time is short to get ring #4….he isn’t going with a youth movement because he chooses too. Al has always favored veteran players.

  • Deja vu

    Strapped for cash, but still has enough to have a “big name” like Boss in for a visit?

    How is that possible?

    Dakota is right, I don’t get it.

    —————————-

    What i mean by strapped for cash is limited to what he can pay due to the cap, just my opinion. We still haven’t made any cuts and i’m sure that will be coming soon. A lil tweaking contracts perhaps, that will free up a lil to sign Boss.

  • Dakota

    611.bcz24 Says:
    August 4th, 2011 at 11:37 am
    The league year starts at 1pm Pacific today, but teams have until tomorrow at 1pm Pacific to be in compliance with the cap.

    The reported salary floor is NOT being enforced this year.

    ++++++++++++

    Link?

  • JB

    My 2011 season tickets arrived yesterday via FedEx. I guess that’s the official signal that we are all ready for some football. I know I am!

    My first 2011 prediction: Miller will be sorry he left the newly resurgent AFC-West Champs. His replacement will see a SB Ring before he does.

  • RAIDERMAN99

    bcz24 Says:
    August 4th, 2011 at 11:18 am
    The cap isn’t ‘nonsense’ but Jerry’s position regarding the cap IS.
    *****************
    Jerrys right. Look at the contract Huff signed. He is getting paid 7 million dollars this year but only counting $895,000 towards the cap.

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

    Jerry is NOT right.

    Huff’s contract may not have substantial cap ramifications THIS year, but the portion of his contract that is guaranteed – ultimately will.

    There’s only so much finagling and creative accounting that can be done. Eventually the piper has to be paid and the cap has to be met.

    This isn’t about Al Davis personally having the cash to pay players. We can debate or speculate on whether he’s solvent or not.

    The fact remains that in an uncapped year, like last season – the Raids had one of, if not the highest, payroll in the NFL.

    Unfortunately, there IS a cap this year. And the cap isn’t ‘nonsense’ as Jerry would have you believe. The cap most certainly DOES have consequences, and must be considered. That’s why were here talking about it. In Jerry’s fantasy world Al Davis is able to sign anyone he wants, or can perpetually restructure contracts so that the cap is never an issue. Simply NOT true, unless the cap is done away with or subtantially increased in the future.

    If the Raids are indeed over the cap as has been reported, then they’re scrambling right now to get under it.

    If they’re already under with additional ways to get further under, then we’ll see some signing(s).

    Davis will have the Raid payroll at the very maximum the cap allows.

    You’re not dealing with a team like the Bucs that had to increase payroll to meet the cap minimum.

  • hwnrdr

    615.JB Says:
    August 4th, 2011 at 11:40 am
    My 2011 season tickets arrived yesterday via FedEx. I guess that’s the official signal that we are all ready for some football. I know I am!

    My first 2011 prediction: Miller will be sorry he left the newly resurgent AFC-West Champs. His replacement will see a SB Ring before he does.

    Hopefully mine comes in today, then…well, today or tomorrow…but if Miller’s replacement is Boss, he would have a second one before him!

  • LTR

    Al may look ols, bue he’s got good genes. His mom’s still alive, He’ll be around for quite some time.

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