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Raiders wrap up final mini camp, break for 6 weeks

By Steve Corkran
Thursday, June 14th, 2012 at 3:50 pm in Oakland Raiders.

The Raiders concluded their third and final mini camp Thursday, with coach Dennis Allen excited about how much progress his players have made, just about every player healthy and the foundation laid for the training camp that starts in late July.
The players won’t be on the field again as a team until they arrive in Napa on July 29. At that time, Allen said he expects all 90 players on the roster to be at or near 100 percent and ready to pick up where they left off today.
“I was pleased with the progress,” Allen said. “Obviously, we’re not near where we need to be yet. It’s always going to be a work in progress, but I specifically thought over the last couple of days that I could kind of feel that we were kind of figuring out what we were asking them to do, and I thought the guys really responded over the last couple of days.”
Allen said he and his assistant coaches aren’t allow to discuss football with the players between now and training camp. Even so, they intend to be in contact with the players to keep tabs on them the next six weeks or so.
He left them with a detailed list of things they should be doing between now and the time they reconvene in Napa.
“I want them to make sure that they keep improving on what we already started,” Allen said. “We’re just laying a foundation for what we wanted to build here. We’ve got to make sure that between now and camp that we don’t just put football totally aside. We’ve got to keep making sure that we’re staying in condition, keep lifting weights as well as keep studying their notes and the playbook.”
Quarterback Carson Palmer said he got the message and that he already has plans to keep in shape, as well as honing his knowledge of the playbook.
“Go back through everything,” Palmer said of how he intends to spend the next six weeks or so. “Starting with protections. Everything starts with protections. (Allen) fired everything at us. There wasn’t really time to sit back and absorb little things here and there, little nuances of the running game, little nuances of redirecting protections and two minute and all these different situations.
“So [I’m] really going to break it down, starting with protections and then going through all the run game responsibilities on the quarterback because that’s obviously going to set the tone of games is with our run game.”

Defensive tackle Travis Ivey returned to practice after being cleared from the concussion he suffered while lifting weights a few days ago.
Safety Mike Mitchell, fullback Manase Tonga, wide recievers Denarius Moore, Eddie McGee and Louis Murphy, defensive lineman Dave Tollefson, linebacker Aaron Curry, tight end Brandon Myers and center Stefen Wisniewski were the only players who didn’t practice Thursday.

Second-year running back Taiwan Jones highlighted an impressive three-day showing with a run on which he juked cornerback Shawntae Spencer near the line of scrimmage, emerged into the secondary and blew past two other would-be tacklers down the left side line.
The Raiders are loaded with fast players. However, Jones’ speed just seems to be otherwordly, especially when he gets into the open field.

Veteran fullback Owen Schmitt worked with the first-team offense quite a bit Thursday. He is making a hard push for the starting job, it seems, even if it’s real early in the process.
Allen said Schmitt is one of the candidates for the short-yardage role filled by Michael Bush in recent years.

It wasn’t long ago that offensive coordinator Greg Knapp talked about the tight ends being an area of concern. Fast forward to today, Allen is impressed by how far that group has come in a short period of time.
“What was perceived to be an area of weakness coming in, I’ve seen some significant improvement,” Allen said. “I’m looking forward to seeing what they do in training camp.”
Myers, David Ausberry and Richard Gordon have done an impressive job as blockers and receivers, with coaches taking note along the way.
Myers has an edge in experience, though Ausberry and Gordon are viewed as promising players in their own right.
“I’ve been around here a few years,” Myers said. “It’s kind of the same as it has been in the past; we just kind of rotate. But yeah, I’m in there with the 1′s right now and just trying to prove to the coaches and my teammates that I can be there and I’m just trying to make plays when my name is called.”
Myers said he has heard the talk about the tight ends being a weak spot with this team.
“People might think that because we don’t have the big name at tight end, but we’ve got guys capable of competing and making plays and we’re going to be fine,” Myers said. “Everybody’s pushing each other. Once the season starts, the best guys will be on the field, helping the team contribute to a win.”

Allen said he likes what he sees with the players on his roster right now. Still, there’s always room for improvement, so more changes will be made whenever there’s a chance to add a player that has the potential to make the team better.
“Listen, I’m never going to be satisfied with where we’re at,” Allen said. “We’re always going to be looking to improve, so it’s like I said, it’s an ongoing process. We’re going to be looking throughout this five-week period until we get to training camp and we’re going to be looking for every way that we can to improve this football team.”

Allen sounds as if he couldn’t be anymore pleased with Palmer after seeing him perform the past two months or so.
“He’s been an outstanding leader,” Allen said. “He’s taken to the new system, has a good command of what we’re asking him to do. He’s coaching the young guys. You couldn’t ask for anything better than what we’re getting out of Carson right now.”
Allen also sees a fire in Palmer that signifies to him big things to come.
“He’s got a little bit of a chip on his shoulder,” Allen said. “He wants to prove he still belongs in this league and can play at an elite level. As with everything else it’s all about your mind-set, and his mind’s in the right place right now.”
Palmer said he feels comfortable in the new offense and with his teammates, whereas last season he arrived midway through and was forced to learn on the fly.
“Can’t wait for camp,” Palmer said. “We got a lot of good work in, and you never know what to expect as you’re coming out of this last mini camp after the OTA’s and offseason workouts. I can’t speak for everybody but I’m definitely pleasantly surprised with where we are.
“We got a lot done. We put in a lot. We executed very well, there weren’t a lot of mental mistakes. There were some young guys, some rookie guys that need to catch up but for a new offense, a new system, and really a new regime, we’re in a good place with this time coming off to get ready for training camp.”

Tollefson spent the past five seasons with the New York Giants, playing for strict disciplinarian Tom Coughlin. He said he sees a lot of similarities in the way Allen runs the show.
“There’s not a lot of bullcrap that comes out of his mouth, which is important,” Tollefson said. “There’s enough guys on this team and in the NFL, in general, that can smell crap, if a guy is just saying stuff to fill time. He doesn’t to that. As a young guy, coming in and being as sharp as he has, knowing what to do as a head coach is pretty impressive.”
In particular, Tollefson said he has been impressed about Allen’s approach to reducing penalties and turnovers. Allen has said that the Raiders will be smart and disciplined.
Saying those things in one thing, Tollefson said. Getting results is another. So far, Tollefson is convinced that Allen has the proper approach to accomplishing the desired goals.
For example. Allen is showing slides of players committing turnovers and penalties after practice. It’s another teaching tool that goes a long way and something that worked well for Coughlin the past five years, Tollefson said.
“That’s something that Coughlin was huge on, showing us what he’s talking about,” Tollefson said. “If you turn the ball over and you get penalties, you will lose games and won’t make it to the playoffs. (Allen’s) done a good job of that.
“To give it lip service, that really doesn’t do it justice. Showing people the results of hanging on to the ball, getting the ball on defense and not shooting yourselves in the foot. The number of penalties that this team had last year was unreal. And then to go 8-8 on top of that, that’s kind of impressive. You got to see it for what it is. There’s no gimmes in this league. To keep setting yourself backward, it’s going to make it even tougher.”

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  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    When the stars on a star built team are playing at their highest level, forget it. Heat in 5. F##k Oklahoma.

  • DutchRaider77

    Happy birthday to Terrelle Pryor!

  • DJ Johnny

    I’m done trying to post anymore until they do a new one. I type and it takes 5 mins. for the words to show up.

    I’ll just enjoy reading the back and forth until they decide to do a new one cuz this is ridiculous.

    Everything seems bogged down now and i’ts taking waaay too long to post anything.

    Have fun!

  • DennisAllensVisor

    Vanilla face is from Borat..

    When he goes to the hood, tries to talk like them.

    He goes to the hotel, white guy behind counter helps him, he says “Yo vanilla face”..

  • hwnrdr

    R8ER MIKE Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:16 am
    mack-madden Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 10:53 am
    ok im curious…

    WTF is a vanilla face?

    i too did not get it

    ******************
    can anybody answer this question ??

    LOL, Ice Ice Baby, maybe?

  • hwnrdr

    DennisAllensVisor Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:30 am
    Vanilla face is from Borat..

    When he goes to the hood, tries to talk like them.

    He goes to the hotel, white guy behind counter helps him, he says “Yo vanilla face”..

    That’s right! Forgot about that one…

  • Method To My Madness

    2490.RaiderRockstar Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:02 am
    just as i said you were right on Hue jackson…you were right on this…see im a man and can admit things

    ***

    cool, ROG

    still predicting OKC in 7, in OT?

    *******

    Yep every game has been wire to wire basically…evenly matched teams….would ya be surprised if OKC won game 5? I wouldnt but miami has momentum and OKC has to man up…i think theyre too soft mentally as miami was last year….team meeting..players only needs to be called today becuz some guys playing with no heart…perkins,ibaka,fisher and especially harden need to be called out by Durant…be a man! This is the finals…its not easy to get there and you may never get back…ask ewing and barkley

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Johnny it takes about 2 minutes for IBA’s Commodore 64 server to load up the comments.

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    You look a like Michael Jackson Beat It.

  • Method To My Madness

    2501.Sullivan44 Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:17 am
    When the stars on a star built team are playing at their highest level, forget it. Heat in 5. F##k Oklahoma.

    *****

    And if OKC does this then what? Both teams ar about even…neither can blow each other out…its came down to wire each game

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    He said team meeting. lol.

  • RaiderRockstar

    just signed up in Dell’s FF league. that makes 4 of us [out of 12]

  • DennisAllensVisor

    Harden & Ibaka’s vanishing act is the reason its 3-1..

  • R8ER MIKE

    DennisAllensVisor Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:30 am
    Vanilla face is from Borat..

    When he goes to the hood, tries to talk like them.

    He goes to the hotel, white guy behind counter helps him, he says “Yo vanilla face”..

    *****************
    thank you DAV.

  • DennisAllensVisor

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:42 am
    just signed up in Dell’s FF league. that makes 4 of us [out of 12]

    —-

    How do I get in on that?..

  • Method To My Madness

    Wow James Harden is gettin roasted today by media and internet….he better man up game 5 or he will always be seen as overrated

  • Method To My Madness

    2511.Sullivan44 Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:41 am
    He said team meeting. lol.

    *****

    did you miss players only part?

  • http://i288.photobucket.com/albums/ll180/floresrd508/mcfaddenball.jpg SouthTexasRaider

    leads arent lost……yall should know by now that the home team that has to comeback, makes the comeback with the officials help. i dont care for either team but would rather much see the thunder win than the head, OVER-RATED players…..lebron, getting hurt and still playing…..LMAO, typical dramatical features so idiots can say that he is the best in the nba like they have been since his coming….

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Miami’s defense it the reason it’s 3-1. #F**kOklahoma

  • Method To My Madness

    2513.DennisAllensVisor Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:42 am
    Harden & Ibaka’s vanishing act is the reason its 3-1..

    ****
    partially…scott brooks is failing as well

  • hwnrdr

    Method To My Madness Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:43 am
    Wow James Harden is gettin roasted today by media and internet….he better man up game 5 or he will always be seen as overrated

    Maybe he should shave the beard?

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Brien, just what would be discussed at this team meeting, of professional athletes mind you? “make the baskets. We have to put the ball in the basket!”

  • Method To My Madness

    STR!!!! yes the man myth..the legend…how goes it?

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Brien will the parents bring punch and cookies to this team meeting?

  • Method To My Madness

    2522.Sullivan44 Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:46 am
    Brien, just what would be discussed at this team meeting, of professional athletes mind you? “make the baskets. We have to put the ball in the basket!”

    *********

    Asking this shows me you never played sports MR

  • hwnrdr

    This is what i think…they used up all of their energy in the first quarter thinking that there is no way miami will come back. When they did, they looked like they were shooting desparation shots. Most were going in, but…live by the jumper, die by the jumper. Barkley said it best when he said he doesn’t like their half court offense!

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Today’s agenda for OKC:

    Team meeting, then Scandia!

  • DennisAllensVisor

    Sullivan44 Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:44 am
    Miami’s defense it the reason it’s 3-1. #F**kOklahoma

    —-

    Disagree.

    They have only held the Thunder under 90 once.

  • Method To My Madness

    Players only meeting….MR im sorry you never played sports but this happens all the time

  • hwnrdr

    LOL, punch and cookies…hey if that works…

  • DennisAllensVisor

    Method To My Madness Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:45 am
    2513.DennisAllensVisor Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:42 am
    Harden & Ibaka’s vanishing act is the reason its 3-1..

    ****
    partially…scott brooks is failing as well

    —-

    This too.

    Harden & Brooks are costing themselves millions.

    Wouldnt be surprised to see Brooks in Orlando next year.

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Brien, OKC should have their team meeting at Round Table, but they already have the place reserved for next week when they have their party and give out trophies.

  • Method To My Madness

    MR we are very aware you want okc to lose, but this act you are doing now is ridiculous…you think there has never been players only meetings in pro sports? wow

  • Method To My Madness

    2532.Sullivan44 Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:50 am
    Brien, OKC should have their team meeting at Round Table, but they already have the place reserved for next week when they have their party and give out trophies.

    ******

    Making zero sense hear as usual Skip Bayless…just ramlbing for the sake of doing it

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    I remember Kevin McHale in some interview years back when he was with Minnesota, they asked him about a team meeting and he laughed, saying that he entire time with the Celtics they might have had 2 team meetings, and they both were a joke. This is professional sports. If you dont’ know your job already, forget it.

  • http://i288.photobucket.com/albums/ll180/floresrd508/mcfaddenball.jpg SouthTexasRaider

    just here waiting to get more inside scoop news on bensons signing, read on PFT he’s getting a look at. didnt know the past 3 seasons he surpassed 1000 AND hes 29???
    sounds like a good pick up if ya ask me

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Brien, maybe Kevin McHale never played sports.

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Dennis, I mean clutch defense, when it counts, not necessarily numbers. Miami has been playing hard on both sides of the court. They’re a team built with stars, and their stars are playing at a high level. It’s a wrap.

  • Method To My Madness

    MR….google right now and put in player only meetings…just see the first few responses you get…Angels,Lakers,Blazers and Red Sox all in 2012 did as such

  • Method To My Madness

    MR…the 80s tough minded Celtics teams you mean where heart wasnt questiobn nor effort? Aw great example lmao…dummy

  • DennisAllensVisor

    Sullivan44 Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:55 am
    Dennis, I mean clutch defense, when it counts, not necessarily numbers. Miami has been playing hard on both sides of the court. They’re a team built with stars, and their stars are playing at a high level. It’s a wrap.

    —-

    Oh ok, yeah they have been playing timely Defense for sure.

  • Method To My Madness

    MR again has been proven to be a fraud….this is just too easy for me guys lmao

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Team meeting: A venue where the mouthiest players get to talk even more.

    There is only one real team meeting in professional sports: On the field of play. And nowhere else. The teams that have the most productive meetings on the field or court are the teams that succeed.

  • DennisAllensVisor

    Players only meetings..

    Not even a question they happen.

  • Method To My Madness

    Los Angeles Lakers Held Players-Only Meeting Amid Rumors, Controversy

    The Laker players decided to band together as everyone else around them — with rumors swirling, a fractured front-office, and unhappy players — goes a bit crazy. Per the LA Times: “Pau Gasol had been twisting in the trade winds, Kobe Bryant had called out the front office, and Andrew Bynum had complained publicly about too much time devoted to shoot-arounds. So the Lakers held a brief, informal team meeting after beating the Portland Trail Blazers, 103-92, Monday at Staples Center. They hammered home the importance of togetherness, like they did most of the game against the Trail Blazers. Don’t worry about the front office. Don’t worry about practices being too long. Just worry about games. And winning them. The meeting came before a short but important road trip leading up to All-Star weekend. The Lakers are at Dallas on Wednesday and at Oklahoma City on Thursday. They are 5-11 on the road. It couldn’t hurt to try to crystallize their thoughts. The get-together wasn’t long at all, but one person familiar with it said it would ‘hopefully help everyone stick together.’ The Lakers also held a brief team meeting on their recent six-game road trip. It was believed to be in the aftermath of their crushing loss in New York City, a game in which Bryant was so irritated he kicked a trash can in the locker room afterward. The Lakers recovered in time to beat Toronto in their next game and finish 3-3 on the trip.”

    ******

    Remember that MR?

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    I guarantee you, half rate teams that have these team meetings? 90% of them are called by guys who want the ball more.

  • hwnrdr

    Didn’t the Raiders have a players only meeting recently? Maybe not last year but 2-3 years ago?

  • http://i288.photobucket.com/albums/ll180/floresrd508/mcfaddenball.jpg SouthTexasRaider

    Sullivan44 Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:55 am
    Dennis, I mean clutch defense, when it counts, not necessarily numbers. Miami has been playing hard on both sides of the court. They’re a team built with stars, and their stars are playing at a high level. It’s a wrap.
    =======================================================

    that team was NOT BUILT with stars, LMAO, it was bought together! c’mon now!

  • Method To My Madness

    Bonus notes from our MLB on FOX broadcast of the Red Sox-Phillies game Saturday night …

    If the Red Sox rally to make the postseason, they might look back to a players-only meeting on May 11 as a turning point.

    GREAT AMERICAN RACE
    The Junior Circuit is poised for epic AL pennant chases this season.
    The night before, right-hander Josh Beckett had allowed seven runs in 2 1/3 innings and the Sox had lost to the Indians at Fenway Park 8-3.

    Designated hitter David Ortiz, the team’s longest-tenured member, called the meeting, and apparently it was a doozy.

    “Heated,” was the adjective one player used.

    The hitters challenged the pitchers to “step it up,” according to two sources. The overall theme was that each player needed to take responsibility.

    The effect was immediate, and positive.

    The Red Sox won their next five games, and since the meeting have won seven of nine overall.

    TIRED ACT
    The Red Sox used to be MLB’s lovable idiots, but fans are no longer amused by their antics.
    There is no way to know how the rest of their season will play out, whether the Sox will surge after their injured players return or whether manager Bobby Valentine, after a rocky first seven weeks, will find the right touch.

    But one criticism of the Sox toward the end of last season was that some of their players acted with a sense of entitlement. The fried-chicken-and-beer episode was the most vivid example of such behavior.

    On May 11, led by Ortiz, the players took a stand.

    Maybe it was a start.

    *****

    Remember that MR?

  • http://www.raiderettes.com Sullivan44

    Method To My Madness Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 11:56 am

    MR…the 80s tough minded Celtics teams you mean where heart wasnt questiobn nor effort?

    ……..

    Yeah, that! Duh. That’s kind of the idea.