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DL Tollefson says he’s ready to get to work

Dave Tollefson, the newest Raider, arrived in Alameda today, got in his first workout and then took a few minutes to discuss things such as what he brings to the equation, what it’s like returning to the Raiders and the key to being sucessful.
Tollefson will wear No. 58, which suggests the Raiders envision him as an outside linebacker. Don’t be fooled by the number. Tollefson is versatile enough to help out at linebacker, defensive end, defensive tackle, as well as special teams.
As evidenced by this 10-minute question-and-answer session, Tollefson also has a firm grasp on the nuances of the NFL, the Raiders history and Jim Carrey’s movie career.
Here is the entire transcript:

Q: What have the Raiders told you about how you’re going to be used?
A: “It’s just a jack-of-all trades is what I’ve been able to kind of hang my hat on. They haven’t promised me anything, which is what I want. I don’t want to be promised anything. That’s not the style of player that I am. There’s an opportunity to play, whether that’s starting or a backup, a rush guy or a guy that can play the edge in the run. So, it’s going to be a little bit of everything, which is what I love to do.”

Q: What’s it like coming back home?
A: “Well, it’s awesome. To grow up here, I lived here for 22 years, to come back home where my mom, my step-dad are out here, my sister, my brother, a lot of my friends. My phone was blowing up as soon as this thing went public. It’s definitely exciting for me and my family.”

Q: How hard was it to leave the Raiders in 2007?
A: “It was definitely tough. The Raiders (allowed) me to continue my career in the NFL by sending me to Europe and putting me on the practice squad. There’s a debt there that I feel I like I never really got to repay after leaving. So, it’s kind of funny how life works. You get an opportunity to come back to someplace like this and kind of really show them that you appreciate the opportunity that they gave you.”

Q: How much did it help you learning under the likes of Strahan, Umenyiora and Tuck?
A: “It’s huge, man. To be the best, you got to be around the best, to be surrounded by people that are successful for yourself to be successful. They’re a great group of guys. That period of time was really special. I just got here today and got my first workout in today. There’s a group of guys here that can play ball up front, too, which is exciting to see. I’m not quite an old, wily vet yet, I got a few good years left in me, but I’ve seen quite a bit in this league. We got a group of guys here that can do some big things, also. I look back fondly on my time with those guys. It was special, for sure, but you can’t dwell on the past. You got to keep moving forward and make it the future.”

Q: What kind of lessons can you bring to this team?
A: “I don’t know much, but there’s a few things that I do know. One of them is, getting in the tournament. You have to have a chance. If you’re not in the tournament, which is playoffs, when I say that, you don’t have a chance. I always like to quote my favorite movie, ‘Dumb and Dumber,’ when she was asking, ‘What are the chances that a girl like me and a guy like you can be together? And she says, ‘One in a million.’ Jim Carrey says, ‘So, you’re saying there’s a chance?’ Just have the opportunity to play for a title, get in the playoffs, that’s all you need. Then you take it one game at a time and the next thing you know, you’re hoisting up the Lombardi trophy. There’s no secret to winning championships. It’s just a matter of doing the work and when it comes to playoffs time, taking advantage of the opportunities.”

Q: How do you think you fit with the Raiders’ defensive schemes?
Tollefson: I think it’s the multiplicity of different things I can do as a player. I’ve played a lot of snaps inside. Will I do that here? I’m not sure, we’ve got a great group of D-tackles that can do a really good job inside. So who knows? I think that’s what intrigued the Raiders about me was the ability to kind of do everything. And that’s something that you have to do as a guy who hasn’t necessarily started in this league, started a couple of games, but you kind of got to be good at everything because you really don’t know when the opportunity is going to come for you to contribute to the team winning a game. I think that’s what hopefully they’re going to use me for, kind of, whatever, what do you need me to do? I can even mow the grass if you want to.

Q: Establish any relationships here that still endure to this day?
Tollefson. It was great to see the equipment guys again. When you’re an old practice squad guy you get close to those guys like that. It was good to see them again. Some of the front office guys, I remember. When I left here, it was kind of like, it was a like a secret mission and left in the middle of the night. It was such a quick stop here. There is a mutual amount of respect throughout the league amongst players, so there is a bunch of guys that I do know that I played against that I do have a lot of respect for so that comes into play.

Q: What would you say was deciding factor for choosing Oakland?
Tollefson: Obviously I have that relationship with Reggie McKenzie being drafted by Green Bay, so the level of comfort to come in here knowing this organization is heading in the right direction with the guys they brought in to run it, coach Allen, I got to meet him on my visit here and the energy that he brings, it’s exciting, and obviously, I’m from here. I grew up a Raiders fan. My mom is a Raiders fan. Obviously she’s a fan of her son, but if you ask her who her favorite team is she’s going to say the Raiders. There’s something special about playing for the team that you grew up watching and where you grew up. It means a lot to me that they believe in me, that’s a big part of it. Again, I just go back to the excitement here. Guys are excited to play football, talk football and get ready.

Q: Difficulty here stopping the run for several years, what’s the key to a defense stopping the run?
Tollefson: You’ve got to be physical, and I think sometimes run defense can be overshadowed by the want to get sacks because they are such big game-changing plays. But you’ve got to earn the right to rush the passer and the way you do that is by stopping the run. That’s going to be a focus of mine no matter what, and I think it will be the guys up front. You’ve got to do it up front. Obviously, the linebackers are named linebackers because they back the line, and if the guys up front aren’t getting the job done, it doesn’t matter who you have behind you. It’s definitely going to be a focus of ours, to stop the run, because if you can’t stop the run, you can’t even start thinking about getting sacks because they’ll just run the ball all day on you.

Q: No more questions?
Tollefson: Go Ygnacio Valley Warriors.

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Steve Corkran

  • Marks hair

    How many posters here have a Raider tattoo or brand?

  • YoungAmerican

    I like Pryor’s work ethic. Hopefully that translates into better footwork, better accuracy, and better decision-making.

  • RaiderRockstar

    John Dickinson ‏ @JDJohnDickinson

    #Raiders McKenzie says he wouldn’t want to be part of “Hard Knocks”in future yrs Chuckled said wants Raider business to stay Raider business

    ***

    nice, Reggie doesn’t need the fame or the limelight. doesn’t care about popularity.

    we’ll do our talking on the field, suckas!

  • R8ER MIKE

    Marks hair Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 12:54 pm
    How many posters here have a Raider tattoo or brand?

    ***************
    right here brother. have the shield tattoo on my right arm. starts at the elbow and goes up over my shoulder !!

  • bcz24

    601.Marks hair Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 12:54 pm
    How many posters here have a Raider tattoo or brand?
    ****************
    I had a Raiders tattoo designed for me by a buddy of mine when we went to the Super Bowl in 02, I won’t get it done until we win a Bowl though. Part of a bet with another buddy, I can’t get it done until we win the big show.

  • DKnight007

    590.SilverNBlackPA Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 12:45 pm
    YoungAmerican Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 12:44 pm
    John Dickinson ‏ @JDJohnDickinson

    #Raiders McKenzie says goal is for Terrelle Pryor to be #2 QB. Called it natural progression for him to see what he can do there.

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

    Come on, Pryor, justify my faith, man!

    ^^^^^^^^
    Whatever Carolina is doing with Scam Newton, than Knapp needs to do the same with Pryor when he is in there.

    Newton and Pryor are the same type of player with the same skill set, the difference is that Scam throws a better ball consistently.

  • RaiderRockstar

    Question:

    what if the BPA is a QB, K, P or LS ???

  • Marks hair

    Cam has a bigger arm and runs with powe too.

  • YoungAmerican

    John Dickinson ‏ @JDJohnDickinson

    #Raiders McKenzie says he does not want to even consider trading future picks especially high ones

  • Marks hair

    I have the shield on my right arm too.. 4 life

  • hwnrdr

    607.RaiderRockstar Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 1:00 pm
    Question:

    what if the BPA is a QB, K, P or LS ???

    Good Question! WWRD?

  • YoungAmerican

    OAKLAND RAIDERS ‏ @RAIDERS

    GM Reggie McKenzie – “You can find starters the last three rounds. It’s not an exact science but you stick to what you believe in.”

  • hwnrdr

    Who is Neil Glat and what has he been named President of?

  • Dakota

    I love you Reggie!

  • R8ER MIKE

    Marks hair Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 1:03 pm
    I have the shield on my right arm too.. 4 life

    ************************************************
    show off the tattoo and tell people that YES, i do bleed black and silver !!

  • R8ER MIKE

    is that your only tatoo Mark?

  • RaiderRockstar

    #Raiders McKenzie says he does not want to even consider trading future picks especially high ones

    GM Reggie McKenzie – “You can find starters the last three rounds. It’s not an exact science but you stick to what you believe in.”

    ***

    this guy won me over a LONG time ago!

  • hwnrdr

    617.RaiderRockstar Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 1:12 pm
    #Raiders McKenzie says he does not want to even consider trading future picks especially high ones

    GM Reggie McKenzie – “You can find starters the last three rounds. It’s not an exact science but you stick to what you believe in.”

    ***

    this guy won me over a LONG time ago!

    Yup…Waka Waka!

  • Marks hair

    616. No I added another tatt when my father died..

  • DKnight007

    609.YoungAmerican Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 1:01 pm
    John Dickinson ‏ @JDJohnDickinson

    #Raiders McKenzie says he does not want to even consider trading future picks especially high ones

    ^^^^^^^^
    Good! If anything, McK needs to try and stockpile future picks.

    Heck, I wonder if McK can get a 3rd Rounder for Kelly in this years draft or maybe even steal a teams 2nd Rounder in next years draft for Kelly?

    Hmm…

  • J Hill

    @ Jhill & JFB

    hey, is Pryor playing RB, TE or WR yet??

    —————————————————————-

    I don’t think I’ve said that since we drafted him.

    I’ve deferred to Raider O, and have said I’ve never seen him play.

  • Marks hair

    Did reg draft any starters in the final 3 rds last season?

  • SilverNBlackPA

    Marks hair Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 1:17 pm
    Did reg draft any starters in the final 3 rds last season?

    +++++++++++

    Ted Thompson is Green Bay’s GM

  • Raider J

    Nice to see some Pryor supporters. If Palmer stays healthy and plays well enough to start for the next few yrs, Pryor may develop into the next starter.

  • YoungAmerican

    John Dickinson ‏ @JDJohnDickinson

    McKenzie reviews draft picks from #Packers he was particularly proud of: William Henderson, Darren Sharper, Donald Driver, Mark Tauscher etc

  • RaiderRockstar

    I wonder if McK can get a 3rd Rounder for Kelly in this years draft or maybe even steal a teams 2nd Rounder in next years draft for Kelly?

    ***

    @ DK007

    Say we trade Kelly for a pick in next year’s draft..

    who would take his place on the D-Line?

    slide Houston inside and start Bryant or Tollefson at DE opposite ShoNasty ???

    draft the best available space clogger at #95 and start him from Day 1 ??

  • Marks hair

    If I could endure the pain I’d like to get the raiders shield on my dk, so that my girls have to pay homage as well..

  • Marks hair

    623. Fine did the pack draft any starters in the last 3 rds?

  • SilverNBlackPA

    Raider J Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 1:19 pm
    Nice to see some Pryor supporters. If Palmer stays healthy and plays well enough to start for the next few yrs, Pryor may develop into the next starter.

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

    I said it at the time and I’ll say it now: Pryor will be Al’s last great move.

  • J Hill

    draft the best available space clogger at #95 and start him from Day 1 ??

    ————————————————————–

    Then what do you do with Seymour?

  • YoungAmerican

    Then what do you do with Seymour?

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

    3-tech, LDE.

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    TP = #2?!?!

    We Told You People!!!!

    Victory dance time!!

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    TP haters?!?!
    Vegas?!?

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    TP!!!!
    Go Buckeyes!!!

  • R8ER MIKE

    Marks hair Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 1:22 pm
    If I could endure the pain I’d like to get the raiders shield on my dk, so that my girls have to pay homage as well..

    **************
    or a hundred dollar bill, cause my old lady loves to blow money !!!

  • R8ER MIKE

    got my first tattoo when i divorced my first wife. its snoopy doing the happy dance !!!! lol lol lol

  • http://out-of-whack 909RaiderLifer

    RAIDERS GM Reggie McKenzie – “Mark Davis has been excellent in allowing me to do it the way I need to do it. It’s been going pretty good.”
    40 minutes ago

  • RaiderRockstar

    lol @ Mike

    you’re killin’ me bro

    trying to get some work done today. finding it hard not to burst out in laughter at some of the material you come up with

  • SilverNBlackPA

    2011 Packers draft from 3rd round on:

    #96 overall – Alex Green, RB, Hawaii. Played special teams and had 3 carries for 11 yards & 1 catch for 6 yards before shredding his knee in Week 7

    #131 overall – Davon House, CB, New Mexico State. Dressed for 2 games last year, inactive the rest. Recorded 1 tackle.

    #141 overall – DJ Williams, TE, Arkansas. Dressed for 13 games last year. Recorded 2 catches for 13 yards backing up Jermichael Finley. Seemed to be mostly a blocker.

    #179 overall – Caleb Schlauderaff, G, Utah. Traded him to the Jets before the final round of roster cuts.

    #186 overall – DJ Smith, OLB, Appalachian State. Dressed for all 16 games, playing a reserve role. Recorded 43 tackles, 0 sacks, 1 INT, 1 pass defensed.

    #197 overall – Ricky Elmore, DE, Arizona. Was waived as part of the final roster cutdown to 53. Not sure if he was signed to the practice squad or not

    #218 overall – Ryan Taylor, TE, North Carolina. Dressed for 15 games last year, recording 1 catch for 4 yards, which also happened to be a touchdown. Again seemed to be mostly a blocker.

    #233 overall – Lawrence Guy, DT, Arizona State. As far as I can tell he made the roster but was a healthy scratch all 16 games.

  • R8ER MIKE

    lol RR. sorry bro !!!

  • Raider J

    629. I’d like to see Pryor earn some playing time. He has a ton of natural talent. A package with Pryor, DMc (the original wildhog), Ford, Moore & Murphy is too fast for most defenses to handle.

  • RaiderRockstar

    RAIDERS GM Reggie McKenzie – “Mark Davis has been excellent in allowing me to do it the way I need to do it. It’s been going pretty good.”

    ***

    what else is he gonna say?

    owner = GM’s boss!

  • http://out-of-whack 909RaiderLifer

    Jerrymcd Raiders GM McKenzie happy with modernization of personnel department with regard to film, computers, etc. Ahead of schedule.
    16 minutes ago
    “““““““““““““““““““““““““““`
    The 8mm, and overhead projectors, as well as the abacus have been replaced…..

  • SilverNBlackPA

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    April 11th, 2012 at 1:44 pm
    RAIDERS GM Reggie McKenzie – “Mark Davis has been excellent in allowing me to do it the way I need to do it. It’s been going pretty good.”

    ***

    what else is he gonna say?

    owner = GM’s boss!

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

    Unless you’re Hubert J, in which case the GM’s boss is you, the head coach!

  • YoungAmerican

    Paul Gutierrez ‏ @PGutierrezCSN

    @Raiders GM Reggie McKenzie said @TerrellePryor is a viable candidate to be No. 2 QB, next week’s’ voluntary mini-camp a “tell-tale” sign.

    ===========

    O,

    Let’s hope your boy TP is ready.

  • RaiderRockstar

    Raiders GM McKenzie happy with modernization of personnel department with regard to film, computers, etc. Ahead of schedule.

    GM Reggie McKenzie said @TerrellePryor is a viable candidate to be No. 2 QB, next week’s’ voluntary mini-camp a “tell-tale” sign

    ***

    It’s a great day to be a Raider fan, isn’t it HD37 ??

  • Raider J

    639. Good info. Packers got pretty good contributions from their late rd picks. The players came from many different regions also.

    …with the 95th pick in the NFL draft, the Raiders select,

    Nigel Bradham – Linebacker, Florida State University

  • bcz24

    TP will have the opportunity at next weeks VMC’s to show his stuff to the coaching staff

  • RaiderRockstar

    new post

  • http://out-of-whack 909RaiderLifer

    what else is he gonna say?

    owner = GM’s boss!

    “““““““““““““““““““““““““““`
    Rockstar…

    My take on that comment, is that Mark is letting Reggie do his job, and staying out of the way for the most part…