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Huff making the grade at cornerback

Michael Huff didn’t have much time to digest the switch from free safety to cornerback two games into the season. Yet, it hasn’t taken him long to make himself right at home.
In the past two games, Huff has been on the field in pass coverage for 84 plays. He had seven balls thrown his way during those plays, with one completion for 2 yards.
It’s enough to make coach Dennis Allen and defensive coordinator Jason Tarver think twice before moving Huff back to safety if Ron Bartell makes a successful return from a shoulder injury.
“Listen, I’m not ready to put him in the Hall of Fame yet, alright?” Allen said Wednesday. “I don’t think Willie Brown has anything to worry about yet. But he has improved. That’s what we expect and that’s what we will continue to expect that every day he has an opportunity to go out and work he’ll get a little bit better every week.”
Huff’s first three games at cornerback, he faced Ben Roethlisberger, Peyton Manning and Matt Ryan. Huff had his struggles during those games, to be sure. However, it also enabled him to learn trial by fire.
“I had those couple of rough games early,” Huff said. “I knew I would go through some growing pains. I had never really played outside for a whole stretch. I knew I’d go through some growing pains and I’m starting to learn from them.”
Indeed. Quarterbacks no longer are targeting Huff as often as Roethlisberger, Manning and Ryan did his first three games.
Yet, Huff said he still feels as if he is a target every game because he spent his first six NFL seasons playing mostly safety.
“They’re still looking at me,” Huff said. “Every time I’m out there, I think the ball is coming my way. (They look at me) like I’m a safety playing corner, especially anytime I’m out there against a big-time receiver, like this week against Vincent Jackson. Every time I’m out there lined up out there on him, I have to assume the ball is coming my way because I’m a safety out there at corner against their best receiver.”
Bartell takes great delight in chiding Huff for his seamless transition.
“I kid him all the time (that) he’s a hell of a lot better corner than he is safety,” Bartell said. “I’ve been impressed with Huff. That’s tough to ask a guy to do. He hasn’t played a lick of corner all camp and all OTAs and then guys go down and he’s able to go in in a pinch. He’s gotten better every game, and he takes pride in it. I’m really impressed with him. He’s a pretty good corner. He’a s great football player.”
Coincidentally, the Raiders are playing against a Tampa Bay Buccaneers team that is led by Ronde Barber, a career cornerback who switched to safety this season.
It’s widely considered more difficult for a player to go from safety to cornerback, rather than the other way around.
“It’s probably harder going from safety down to corner,” Barber said. “That’s not a transition you see very often. Actually, I can’t think of any that have actually done it off the top of my head.”

– Allen said he isn’t in any hurry to decide what to do with Bartell just yet.
Bartell practiced today for the first time since he suffered a shoulder injury in the regular-season opener Sept. 10. He isn’t eligible to play in a game until Nov. 11.
Allen said he will evaluate Bartell in the coming days before deciding how to proceed. The Raiders have 21 days to decide whether to activate Bartell to the 53-man roster, waive him or place him on season-ending injured reserve.

– Curious what the Raiders offensive game plan is going to be against the Buccaneers? Check out the stats, and you should get a pretty firm idea on what they’re going to do before the game starts.
The Buccaneers are tied for first in the league against the run, holding opposing ballcarriers to an average of 3.5 yards rushing through seven games. The Raiders are tied for 26th in yards per carry on offense at 3.5.
On the flip side, the Buccaneers are 31st against the pass, with an average of 309.6 yards per game so far. The Raiders are 10th in passing offense at an average of 264 yards through seven games.
That doesn’t mean that the Raiders won’t at least try to establish the run game, Palmer said.
“We’re never going to abandon the run. They are very good against the run, and they’ve struggled some against the pass and they’ve had some big plays happen to him over and over again. But it’s a good football team.”
Palmer said Allen pointed out to the players that the Buccaneers are a lot like the Raiders in that they started off slow, overcame adversity and now they are riding some momentum after stirring upset of the Minnesota Vikings on the road.
“If you’ve got four guys that can rush the passer like they do, you can’t just go out and throw the ball on every play, because those guys are going to get to you, they’re too good up front,” Palmer said. “But we’re never going to just go into a game and completely abandon the run game. We’re going to pick our spots and definitely go in and be physical and run the ball, but when we have our shots downfield we need to hit ‘em this week.”

– Buccaneers quarterback Josh Freeman is having a bounce-back season after a disastrous season last year.
He is the league’s eighth-highest-rated passer at 93.3, with 14 touchdowns and only five interceptions. This, from a player that was intercepted 22 times last season versus only 16 touchdown passes and finished with a pedestrian 74.6 passer rating.
In 2010, Freeman burst onto the scene as the unquestioned starter with 25 touchdowns and only six interceptions, as well as a 95.9 passer rating. He has nine touchdowns and one interception the past three games, with three touchdown passes in each game.
First-year head coach Greg Schiano said he and his offensive coaches broke down the video of Freeman’s past games and devised a strategy that centered on having him doing what he does best.
“We all spent time with him early on in the process, reviewing just so we knew where his basis was, and then Ron (Turner) and Mike (Sullivan) did an awesome job of teaching the system and continue to teach the system,” Schiano said. “We’re a long ways off from being all-in as far as implementation. What we’ve given him he has done a nice job with.
“The one thing about Josh is, he is just an incredibly hard worker and is committed to the whole process, the meeting room, walkthrough, classroom and practice. He loves every part of the preparation as well as at the game.”

– Here’s what Schiano thinks of Palmer after watching video of his play the first seven games.
“He’s a guy that there’s no uncertainty with what he wants to do,” Schiano said. “You can see he’s well coached, he’s been well coached. You can see the reads. He reads things very quickly. Just the entire Raider football team is a fast, fast football team. His receivers are fast, his running back is fast — running backs are fast. So you cannot make a mistake. If you do it gets exposed.”
Safe to say, Schiano is not in the camp that thinks Palmer isn’t the long-term answer for the Raiders at quarterback.

– Running back Mike Goodson said the turf-toe injury he suffered against the Chiefs isn’t about to keep him from playing in a game. Sure enough, he was at practice today acting as if nothing happened.
He said he got hurt at the end or a run when he jammed his toe as he was going to the ground.
Goodson and Darren McFadden credited the zone-blocking scheme for the Raiders late success against the Chiefs running the ball.
McFadden rushed for 73 yards on 12 carries in the fourth quarter after amassing only 41 yards to that point.
“Wear ‘em down, wear ‘em down,” Goodson said, “and it’ll start kicking in the third or fourth quarter.”
McFadden had runs of 19 and 28 yards in the fourth quarter en route to a 114-yard effort. He had only 17 yards on 12 carries at halftime.
“It’s one of those things, the zone scheme is designed to get 1 or 2 yards here and there, then eventually they’re going to start popping,” McFadden said. “That’s what happened last week.”

– Allen remains non-commital on whether he intends to activate linebacker Aaron Curry before the 21-day evaluation period expires next Wednesday.
“That’s a crystal ball you have to look in to say if there’s any chance that he wouldn’t (be activated),” Allen said. “Our anticipation is we will activate him. But again I don’t have that crystal ball.”
If the Raiders don’t activate Curry, their two others options are to waive him or place him on season-ending injured reserve. Curry missed all of training camp and the first seven regular-season games while recovering from sore knees.

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Steve Corkran

  • hwnrdr

    LOL…I remember using the old school tire pressure guage, the one that already looks like a pipe…and an aluminum soda can!

  • R8ER MIKE

    hwnrdr Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:07 am
    LOL…I remember using the old school tire pressure guage, the one that already looks like a pipe…and an aluminum soda can!

    ***************
    where theres a will theres a way !!!

  • R8ER MIKE

    i agree with O. a bong is sooooo much better !!

  • The Beeech Dawg

    Bongs are dope, but I usually prefer snorting Ecstacy with a bunch of C-list porn stars in a stretch limo

    You KNOW we’re pumpin’ Too Short

    HOLLA

  • DMAC

    Bongs and pipes are cool, but I feel like a dope fiend smoking out dem’ things.
    lol

  • SLAYER

    A REAL HARDCORE MAN DOESNT SMOKE MARIJUANA,..WE INJECT METH. 666

  • oklahomaRaider18

    Sign Sterling Moore, release Coye Francies!!!

  • DMAC

    “Pass the dutchie to the left hand side”

  • oklahomaRaider18

    Raiders D gonna contain The Muscled Hamster!!!

  • DMAC

    How about that run D!?

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    The Beeech Dawg Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 10:56 am
    Brahs, the best way to roll tight PHAT j’s is get a wasted stripper to pass out on her belly, lay your Zig Zag in her buttcrack, then fill ‘er up with chronic

    If you want a tighter pack, just push it down deeper into the crack for pressure
    $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

    PMPP rules!!!

  • DJ Johnny

    504.The Beeech Dawg Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:13 am
    Bongs are dope, but I usually prefer snorting Ecstacy with a bunch of C-list porn stars in a stretch limo

    You KNOW we’re pumpin’ Too Short

    HOLLA

    Hey Beeech. Is the “Meltdown Meter” still operational?

  • DMAC

    Raider O Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:25 am

    The Beeech Dawg Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 10:56 am
    Brahs, the best way to roll tight PHAT j’s is get a wasted stripper to pass out on her belly, lay your Zig Zag in her buttcrack, then fill ‘er up with chronic

    If you want a tighter pack, just push it down deeper into the crack for pressure
    $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

    PMPP rules!!!
    ========

    I must confess….
    Beech dawg SOMETIMES does come w/ some funny schit.
    lol

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Hwnrdr,

    LOL
    I used to put Vodka. Hookahs too.

  • The Beeech Dawg

    O Brah – You KNOW it

    DJ Brah – Thankfully it wasn’t plugged in yesterday or it would’ve exploded. But I’ll pull it out of the shed for today

    Did you know I installed a robot voice box into the PARTYDUDE 8000?

    Sounds like Twiki from buck rogers

    Taking this jam to the NEXT LEVEL

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    DAMN,SOUNDS LIKE A TWEEKER CONVENTION IN 2DAY..

  • DMAC

    DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:32 am

    DAMN,SOUNDS LIKE A TWEEKER CONVENTION IN 2DAY..
    ============

    No tweeking. Just flying high.

  • The Beeech Dawg

    DMAC

    All I gots to say is …

    PMPP 4 LIFE

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    DMAC Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:15 am
    Bongs and pipes are cool, but I feel like a dope fiend smoking out dem’ things.
    lol
    $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

    No pipes for me.
    Bongs, papers, and blunts.

  • DMAC

    The Beeech Dawg Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:35 am

    DMAC

    All I gots to say is …

    PMPP 4 LIFE
    ======

    I rep that Green Party, ya dig?

    Put it in da air!

  • DJ Johnny

    515.The Beeech Dawg Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:31 am
    O Brah – You KNOW it

    DJ Brah – Thankfully it wasn’t plugged in yesterday or it would’ve exploded. But I’ll pull it out of the shed for today

    Did you know I installed a robot voice box into the PARTYDUDE 8000?

    Sounds like Twiki from buck rogers

    Taking this jam to the NEXT LEVEL

    Cool. I was worried it might be in the shop.

  • hwnrdr

    Raider O Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:29 am
    Hwnrdr,

    LOL
    I used to put Vodka. Hookahs too.

    LOL…those were the days, now…none of that for me!

  • The Beeech Dawg

    Dang, Stanford Routt is the November cover dude in my mini Raider wall calendar

    Guess that’s why they call it the blues

    :(

  • DMAC

    The Beeech Dawg Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:37 am

    Dang, Stanford Routt is the November cover dude in my mini Raider wall calendar

    Guess that’s why they call it the blues

    :(
    ===========

    Its still salvageable.
    Glue a piece of burnt toast next to the pic.

  • hwnrdr

    Anyways…interesting week…Halloween, my daughter’s b-day is today, party tomorrow for her, Saturday get everything ready for Sunday! Let’s get win #3!

  • hwnrdr

    Sorry, in a row!!!

  • DMAC

    Tell her DMAC says Happy Bday

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    Hwnrdr,

    Happy B-Day and best wishes from the Green Party.

  • hwnrdr

    Thanks guys!

  • The Beeech Dawg

    Awww yeah, DMAC bringing the FUNNY

    Hwnrdr, you gots to challenge Krappy to a classic old dude hip hop blog battle

    You daughter will be all like “Yo, my old man just tore up the Blog Rap Octagan, what you beeyotches got, whut whut?”

    You know the PMPP gots your back, word

  • eastoaklandraider

    Hwnrdr Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:42 am
    Anyways…interesting week…Halloween, my daughter’s b-day is today, party tomorrow for her, Saturday get everything ready for Sunday! Let’s get win #3!
    —————–

    Evening Nation, and happy B-Day to Hwnrdr Daughter.

    ok back to the madness that is this blog.

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    HOW OLD HWNRDR ?

  • DMAC

    My son dressed up as Batman last night, but he was crying so much he reminded of DarkWing Duck, instead. All he needed was the beak to make the costume complete.

  • DMAC

    DirtLot
    What up?
    Haven’t seen you at the games this year.

  • hwnrdr

    DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:49 am
    HOW OLD HWNRDR ?

    She turned 5 today!

  • hwnrdr

    DMAC Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:50 am
    DirtLot
    What up?
    Haven’t seen you at the games this year.

    The one game you came with your son, you and him missed each other by like an hour or so…

  • http://www.raiders.com Raider O

    LMAO DMAC.

  • Purvisman/Intrepid/ Full Disclosure

    Steve Corkran ‏@CorkOnTheNFL
    Carson Palmer, a man at peace as the leader of the Raiders offense. pic.twitter.com/ipTNCkY3 =======

    As are all real Raider fans.

  • DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL

    HEY DMAC,JUST MISS’D U A COUPLE TIMES AT HWNRDR’S SPREAD.MAYBE THIS WEEK.DO U HAVE HWNRDR’S CONTACT INFO ? IF SO,HE CAN GIVE U MINE.THINK HE MAY JOURNY OVER TO A-LOT THIS WEEK 4 A MINUTE..

  • DMAC

    And thats why I smoke weed. My kids drive me nutz sometimes mayne. Can’t stand the crying, for no reason schit.
    Gotta ease the mind brother!

  • eastoaklandraider

    LOL at you Faker fans you guys are in for a long slow demise over these next 2 years after that Kobe retires and you guys will be back to your Nick Van Exel Elden Campbell days lol its gonna be great!!!

  • hwnrdr

    DIRT-LOT FOOTBALL Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 11:55 am
    HEY DMAC,JUST MISS’D U A COUPLE TIMES AT HWNRDR’S SPREAD.MAYBE THIS WEEK.DO U HAVE HWNRDR’S CONTACT INFO ? IF SO,HE CAN GIVE U MINE.THINK HE MAY JOURNY OVER TO A-LOT THIS WEEK 4 A MINUTE..

    I’ll do that…maybe have him run over to A lot with me!

  • DMAC

    New post bros