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Raiders wrapping up OTAs, eyeing final mini camp

First-year coach Dennis Allen presided over yet another organized team activity Wednesday, giving him only one more voluntary practice before everyone is required to be here for a three-day mini camp next week.

Even so, all but six players were in attendance in Alameda and all but three who are here practiced. Center Stefen Wisniewski, linebacker Aaron Curry and defensive end Matt Shaughnessy still are rehabilitating injuries.

Allen said he doesn’t expect to see Wisniewski in practice until the Raiders convene for training camp in Napa on July 29.

“Everybody needs practice, everybody needs to work to get better,” Allen said in a post-practice news conference. “So, does it set him back? Yeah, it sets him back a little bit, and I wouldn’t expect him back before training camp. But I would expect that once we get to training camp that he’ll be ready to go.”

Allen said he isn’t worried about Wisniewski’s status, even given the fact Wisniewski is converting from left guard to center this season.

Wisniewski has sat in on all the position and team meetings, which has enabled him to get up to speed on the scheme and playbook.

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

Defensive tackles Richard Seymour and Tommy Kelly, punter Shane Lechler, running back Darren McFadden, safety Mike Mitchell and fullback Manase Tonga did not attend today’s practice.

Allen said McFadden is in Arkansas so that he can conduct his youth football camp. McFadden is expected back here Thursday.

Mitchell and Tonga, too, are recovering from injuries. Kelly, Seymour and Lechler opted not to attend.

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

Today’s practice marked the first time the media got a look at fullback Marcel Reece. He missed the first three weeks of OTAs because he hadn’t signed his one-year tender as an exclusive rights free agent.

Reece signed his contract Monday and reported to work that day. He looks in shape and ready to return as the starting fullback.

Allen said Reece’s receiving ability gives the Raiders and edge that they can use against opposing defenses.
“He’s an athletic type of fullback,” Allen said. “Where he really excels is in the passing game and the different mismatches that he can create. From our standpoint, as far as being the lead blocker in our scheme, that’s where he’s got the most work that he’s got to work on. But his mismatches in the passing game will be something that we could use.”

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

Rookie wide receiver Juron Criner was at it again today. Early on in the proceedings, he broke off a post route because of a pass that was thrown well behind him. Criner reached back with his left hand and made an eye-opening one-handed catch as he continued into the end zone.

Allen says Criner has “made a couple of plays,” which is to be expected from a coach careful not to play up a rookie too much, too soon.

However, there’s no way around the fact that Criner has been nothing short of spectacular in the four practices accessible to the media.

Criner shows great awareness, goes after the ball, isn’t fearful of going after balls in the vicinity of defenders and catches most everything he gets his hands on. Heck, he doesn’t even need both hands to catch some passes, as evidenced by today.

Later in practice, Criner found a seam between two defenders and hauled in a pass that many rookies might have shied away from.

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

Second-year quarterback Terrelle Pryor has had his moments during the OTAs. Suffice, Wednesday was not one of his better days.

Several passes were overthrown by a wide margin, with one sailing over the head of the intended receiver and into the hands of cornerback Bryan McCann.

“He did like a lot of guys out here today,” Allen said. “He had some good plays and then he had some bad plays. But that’s
to be expected this time of year. I’m not going to read too much into that because what I have seen out of Terrelle Pryor is day in and day out he gets a little bit better. And that’s all that we can ask for is that he keeps making progress, and he’s done that so far.”

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

Rookie offensive lineman Tony Bergstrom had been working exclusively at left guard early in OTAs. He now is getting some time at right guard, as well.

Ultimately, the plan is for Bergstrom to settle in at one position. In the interim, Allen subscribes to the belief that backup linemen need to be versatile enough to play more than one position.

“When you look at the NFL, you got to be multiple and guys are going to have to play multiple positions so when you go into a game on Sunday, generally, you’re going to bring seven offensive linemen into the game,” Allen said. “So, you’re going to bring an inside swing guy that’s got the ability to maybe play guard and center or maybe even play right and left guard.”

With Wisniewski sidelined, the first-team offensive line has remained consistent: Jared Veldheer, Cooper Carlisle, Alex Parsons, Mike Brisiel and Khalif Barnes, from left to right.

Allen said he has been impressed by the ability of the offensive linemen to make a seamless transition to the zone-blocking scheme favored by offensive coordinator Greg Knapp.

“They’ve really adapted to the zone-running scheme that we’re going to use. It’s a lot different than some of the things that they were asked to do last year,” Allen said. “But they’ve done a nice job of adjusting. Our offensive line coaches are doing an outstanding job of working with those guys.

“At the end of the day, by the time we get through training camp, I’ll be real pleased with where we’re at offensive line-wise and what we’re going to be able to do.”

Bergstrom and Joseph Barksdale figure to get some reps with the first-team line at some point, even if it’s not until training camp.

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

The Raiders under then-coach Lane Kiffin were penalized by the league for being too physical during some OTAs. On Tuesday, the Seahawks were informed that they will lose two OTA days and a workout day, as well, for going beyond the rules as set forth in the collective bargaining agreement.

Allen said he and his coaches are vigilant about abiding by the rules, even though it’s not always easy to do.

“It’s difficult because all of us as coaches, we want to do the best that we can but also make sure that we’re within the rules,” Allen said. “We’re trying to do everything we can to practice the right way and get something out of it but yet try to do it within the rules of what’s been set forth with the new CBA.

“Every day, we’ve gone out and we’ve preached the message of no contact and trying to stay up off the ground and, basically, if you come into contact with somebody to kind of shut it down.”

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

The Raiders playoff aspirations took a huge blow when lead running back Darren McFadden went down with a severe foot injuy last season.

To that end, Allen said the Raiders are taking precautions to help keep McFadden on the field more this season. McFadden missed the final nine games last season.

“I don’t know if it’s a case of not pushing him too hard,” Allen said. “Part of the issue is, making sure we do everything we can in the offseason program to make sure his body’s in the right condition to handle the type of punishment that a runner has to take.

“As we go through the season, we’re going to have to make sure we monitor him, make sure we keep him fresh and make sure we keep him healthy. He is a threat and he is a big part of our offense.”

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

Wide receiver Denarius Moore also made an impressive one-handed catch during practice today. Allen said Moore reminds him of some of the great receivers he was around during his tenure with the New Orleans Saints.

“He’s an exceptional route-runner, he’s got great speed,” Allen said. “I’m really looking forward to working with Denarius. He’s going to be a really good football player for us. I would compare him, as far as route-running, he’s a lot like Lance Moore that we had there in New Orleans, but probably a little bit faster and a little bit more of a down-the-field threat.”

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Steve Corkran

  • DMAC

    Primero perros!

  • DMAC

    Thanx Corky

  • RaiderRockstar

    nice work, Steve!

  • DMAC

    When they let you outta the drunk tank Corky?

  • DMAC

    I got 5 on it!

  • RaiderRockstar

    Center Stefen Wisniewski, linebacker Aaron Curry and defensive end Matt Shaughnessy still are rehabilitating injuries

    ***

    Get Well Soon!

    we’re counting on all 3 players in a major way [no depth]

  • hwnrdr

    good job!

  • Dakota

    14 minutes ago – by Eric Gilmore

    Former Colts OLB Phillip Wheeler, one of the Raiders’ key free agent signings, has impressed Dennis Allen with his athleticism and versatility. “He’s explosive, he’s got speed, he’s got some rush ability,” Allen said. “When we play some of our zone coverages, our Covers 2′s and stuff that he did in Indianapolis, he really excels at that. Being able to use guys like that, that have that type of athletic ability, where we can move him around and do some different stuff, I think that’s going to help us.”

    Oakland Raiders RapidReports | All National Football League RapidReports

  • RaiderRockstar

    Defensive tackles Richard Seymour and Tommy Kelly, punter Shane Lechler, running back Darren McFadden, safety Mike Mitchell and fullback Manase Tonga did not attend today’s practice.
    Allen said McFadden is in Arkansas so that he can conduct his youth football camp. McFadden is expected back here Thursday.
    Mitchell and Tonga, too, are recovering from injuries. Kelly, Seymour and Lechler opted not to attend.

    ***

    Kelly, Seymour and Lechler = nice leadership !!

  • Silverandblack666

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8TELYYNi6U

    Muslim sensitivity training a must watch!

  • MikieG

    Sounds like Mr. Criner is this years Dennarius Moore…Get that man in the starting lineup STATT…

    Too bad our Defense is going to suck burro balls this year. Woulda been nice to have at least a middle of the pack solid #16 Ranked defense or so…as it stands were going to be around #26, #24 if we are lucky….Those sorts of rankings don’t win many, if any, playoff games..

    I guess we shall see how this all plays out though. Everybody has the Chefs winning the Division…(barf)

  • RaiderRockstar

    From our standpoint, as far as being the lead blocker in our scheme, that’s where he’s got the most work that he’s got to work on.

    ***

    Allen & Knapp are full of Schmitt!

  • RaiderRockstar

    Bryan McCann picked off Pryor, eh?

    maybe we shouldn’t write off the fumble prone return man just yet!

  • Plunketthead

    ,,,,,, not two, not three, not four,,,,, one game away from elimination

  • RaiderRockstar

    Rookie offensive lineman Tony Bergstrom had been working exclusively at left guard early in OTAs. He now is getting some time at right guard, as well.
    Ultimately, the plan is for Bergstrom to settle in at one position. In the interim, Allen subscribes to the belief that backup linemen need to be versatile enough to play more than one position.
    “When you look at the NFL, you got to be multiple and guys are going to have to play multiple positions so when you go into a game on Sunday, generally, you’re going to bring seven offensive linemen into the game,” Allen said. “So, you’re going to bring an inside swing guy that’s got the ability to maybe play guard and center or maybe even play right and left guard.”

    ***

    Bergs = backup LG & RG

    1 of 7 guys that will be active on gameday

  • Raidernationdave

    75th!

  • RaiderRockstar

    Bergstrom and Joseph Barksdale figure to get some reps with the first-team line at some point, even if it’s not until training camp.

    ***

    I figured

  • JLofty

    Degnarlious getting a shout out at the OTAs!!
    Criner gunna be a welcome addition to the WR group. We’ve been needing that for a while…
    Reece better get his blocking up to par or he is never going to see that fat contract.

  • personal foul

    Thanks for the update Steve.

  • JLofty

    MM3x4 better get his body on the field and make serious progress or he is going to be looking for a yob man…

  • 8RaiderReign8

    Lets get it!

  • Dakota

    Might as well cut T. Pryor now.

  • http://InsidetheOaklandRaiders Goldie7

    Great Read Mr. Steve.! I enjoyed reading. Looks like our Raiders have a lot of work to do. Thanks Cork!

  • RaiderRockstar

    With Wisniewski sidelined, the first-team offensive line has remained consistent: Jared Veldheer, Cooper Carlisle, Alex Parsons, Mike Brisiel and Khalif Barnes, from left to right.

    ***

    sounds like the Alex Parsons Project is working out!

  • hwnrdr

    24.RaiderRockstar Says:
    June 6th, 2012 at 1:10 pm
    With Wisniewski sidelined, the first-team offensive line has remained consistent: Jared Veldheer, Cooper Carlisle, Alex Parsons, Mike Brisiel and Khalif Barnes, from left to right.

    ***

    sounds like the Alex Parsons Project is working out!

    NICE! Games people play, you take it or you leave it!

  • TxRaider210

    @24 Seems like it is. Also sounds like Wheeler is all over the place, as usual.

  • JLofty

    Get well Lil Wiz!

  • JLofty

    Wheeler might just be that playmaker we been needing for a while.

  • TxRaider210

    Big Ups to DMAC for giving back to the community children. Good job!

  • 8RaiderReign8

    It’s great to hear our O line is doing their job. They might be the most important part of our entire team.

  • DutchRaider77

    Jerry says that B. Underwood is playing CB in Goodson article…”It was a rough day for quarterback Terrelle Pryor, culminating in a late throw over the middle which went directly to cornerback Brandon Underwood.”

  • TxRaider210

    @30 Amen to that! If Palmer has time in the pocket this year, watch out!

  • http://raiders.com Rolling Cornstock and the Muscrat Mountain Posse

    Kelly, Seymour and Lechler opted not to attend.

    —————————-

    Lechlers cool. Why did kelly and seymour not attend?

  • TxRaider210

    Rolling Cornstock and the Muscrat Mountain Posse Says:
    June 6th, 2012 at 1:31 pm
    Kelly, Seymour and Lechler opted not to attend.

    —————————-

    Lechlers cool. Why did kelly and seymour not attend?

    —————————-
    No kidding, he obviously isn’t the player he used to be. Shouldn’t he and Kelly be out there trying to help out these young guys?

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    LMAO Plunk!
    Go Meltics!

  • Breaking_Black

    Do you guys remember when someone said Marcel Reece catches like a wide receiver and blocks like one too. Lol

    I think it was Mike Vrabel.

  • 8RaiderReign8

    The line will also be seen in helping Darren McFadden get better stats along with our wide receivers

  • bcz24

    No kidding, he obviously isn’t the player he used to be. Shouldn’t he and Kelly be out there trying to help out these young guys?
    *************
    They are helping. We have a bunch of knew DLineman that need the reps, and they wouldnt be getting them if Sey and TK were out there. These are voluntary OTA’s… keyword VOLUNTARY

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Rookie wide receiver Juron Criner was at it again today. Early on in the proceedings, he broke off a post route because of a pass that was thrown well behind him. Criner reached back with his left hand and made an eye-opening one-handed catch as he continued into the end zone.
    Allen says Criner has “made a couple of plays,” which is to be expected from a coach careful not to play up a rookie too much, too soon.
    However, there’s no way around the fact that Criner has been nothing short of spectacular in the four practices accessible to the media.
    Criner shows great awareness, goes after the ball, isn’t fearful of going after balls in the vicinity of defenders and catches most everything he gets his hands on. Heck, he doesn’t even need both hands to catch some passes, as evidenced by today.
    Later in practice, Criner found a seam between two defenders and hauled in a pass that many rookies might have shied away from.
    $$$$$$$$$$

    Criner is a STUD!

  • 8RaiderReign8

    My worry on defense isn’t the line because they are well respected around the league. My worry is the linebackers and the run defense

  • RaiderRockstar

    They are helping. We have a bunch of knew DLineman that need the reps, and they wouldnt be getting them if Sey and TK were out there

    ***

    I wonder who is starting at DT in OTA’s ?

    Bryant & Ivey?

  • 8RaiderReign8

    All I ever wanted for the Oakland raiders is to have the run defense in the top 15… If we could do that we’re going to the playoffs

  • TxRaider210

    bcz24 Says:
    June 6th, 2012 at 1:37 pm
    No kidding, he obviously isn’t the player he used to be. Shouldn’t he and Kelly be out there trying to help out these young guys?
    *************
    They are helping. We have a bunch of knew DLineman that need the reps, and they wouldnt be getting them if Sey and TK were out there. These are voluntary OTA’s… keyword VOLUNTARY

    ———————
    I get what you’re saying, but it wouldn’t kill them to get out there help guys one on one. Not saying they should be playing, but maybe offering advice to the new guys. The coaches have a lot on their plate imo

  • 8RaiderReign8

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    June 6th, 2012 at 1:39 pm
    They are helping. We have a bunch of knew DLineman that need the reps, and they wouldnt be getting them if Sey and TK were out there

    ***

    I wonder who is starting at DT in OTA’s ?

    Bryant & Ivey?
    ________________

    That sounds like a question for the next live chat

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Future starting WRs:
    1- Moore
    2- Criner
    3- Ford/ DHB

  • RaiderRockstar

    It would be a mild surprise if Christo Bilukidi, Jamie Cumbie or Dominique Hamilton started in Seymour or Kelly’s absence imo !!

    It’s gotta be Bryant & Ivey, right?

  • HairyBush

    woo hoo new info!

  • 8RaiderReign8

    Raider O Says:
    June 6th, 2012 at 1:43 pm
    Future starting WRs:
    1- Moore
    2- Criner
    3- Ford/ DHB
    _____________________

    So the first receiver drafted after Al seems to have more than just speed?

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Allen & Knapp are full of Schmitt!
    $$$$$$$
    LMAO
    Reece is an avg blocker, but he is a matchup nightmare in the passing game.

  • RaiderRockstar