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Training camp: Raiders show some color as they report to Napa

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NAPA — The Raiders want to be known as one of the better teams in the league.

With they reported for training camp Thursday at the Napa Valley Marriott, they at least confirmed to be among the most colorful.

Marquette King was the leader in that department. The fifth-year punter strolled into camp on Thursday rocking a full-face green Power Rangers mask, causing even star pass rusher Khalil Mack to crack up. Mack quickly whipped out his phone to capture the moment on Snapchat.

A few minutes later, new cornerback Sean Smith backed his large SUV up and checked himself in while wearing a hat with large gold letters spelling out his last name. He also rocked a pair of Superman chains around his neck.

There’s some hype around this team and that helped add flavor to a normally monotonous day as the remainder of the roster checked into camp ahead of Friday’s first full-team workout. Rookies, quarterbacks and players who missed time to injury have been in Napa since Sunday.

The players aren’t immune to all the hype and praise that’s been heaped on this Raiders team and don’t exactly plan to ignore all of it.

“If you’re going to take it in, you’ve definitely got to know how to channel it,” running back Latavius Murray said. “We know we have a long way to go, but we know what we’re capable of. We know the guys we have in the building. But again that doesn’t mean nothing if we’re not able to go out there and put it on the field.”

Safety Reggie Nelson, like Smith part of Oakland’s impressive free agent crop, isn’t burdened by the Raiders’ 13 straight non-winning seasons and doesn’t think anybody on the team should be either.

“You can’t worry about all the last years,” Nelson said. “You’ve got to worry about right now. That’s the beginning. That’s why we’re here for camp, to start from scratch.”

This was Nelson first in-person appearance since signing his two-year deal with the Raiders. He spoke to the media only on a conference call after signing and didn’t participate in the offseason program with an injury that he remained vague about Thursday. The 10-year veteran doesn’t expect the time he missed to hinder him.

“I kind of know what to expect,” Nelson said. “It’s 10 years. I don’t think too much is going to change with camp and everything. I know what to do and the mindset of getting that job done so I don’t think it set me back. I was just dealing with some issues and I’m good.”

Nelson also insisted that he’s “been 100 percent, you just haven’t seen me” but also wouldn’t commit to practicing when the Raiders hit the field.

“When coach says that he wants me full go, then that’s when it’ll happen,” Nelson said.

The rest of the day was filled with chatter of players proclaiming their excitement for the start of camp. Backup running back and special teams ace Taiwan Jones even tried to convince reporters that “this is the best part of the season,” a joke that drew only delayed chuckles.

Murray was more convincing.

“I have dreams about football every day,” he said. “I wake up, might jump in my sleep, whether it’s a guy I made miss or a guy that hit me. You have to eat, sleep and think football and I do.”

That’s what the Raiders will do over their next two and a half weeks in Napa, preparing for what, as Murray said, the Raiders “hope to be a real long season.”

n Denico Autry was among the Raiders who missed the offseason program and Thursday offered some clarity as to why. He reported for camp with a brace on his right hand/wrist.

 

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Jimmy Durkin

Sports writer for the Bay Area News Group, covering the Raiders.

  • R8erEduc8er

    Deuces!

  • HELLSBELLS

    And he was drunk/high.

  • M.Shorter

    Aldon football wasting talent and losing millions

  • SB3

    Exactly, if he was a Whiner still, we would all be clowning right now.

  • FriskiesR8R

    That’s what made it almost believable, terrible pick, nickname gonna be joey bozo

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    People who run football teams are not in the business of worrying about players having a fair share of chances.

    It’s like Al said: Just Win Baby!

    The guy’s presence on the Raiders could help make us have a really interesting defense.

  • rifflicks

    the compassionate liberal gobbledygook you spew is all talk…..now it shows how you really feel about those trapped in an addiction

  • R8erEduc8er

    But do people need rehab for smoking weed? Or was it for drinking?

  • R8erEduc8er

    Nope

  • rifflicks

    it’s a dependence problem

  • EMRaiders

    We wont lose anything by keeping the Aldon situation as is right now. If when his suspension is up hes still not allowed to play, or he keeps making stupid decisions, then we dont bring him back, nothing lost. But worth keeping the situation as is right now for the potential of the success story.

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    Based on that Matusak and Stork Hendricks should never have been Raiders.

  • BroJackson34

    The organization trusted him to stay clean and out of trouble until he’s reinstated; what does he do in return-film himself smoking pot, while a friend encourages not to film. Still does it anyway, denies it was him and then enters rehab. He’s an idiot and this isn’t his first mistake.

  • DutchRaid

    It isn’t dead money….so if we release him, do we have more cap money or is it not counted towards our cap right now…I don’t know?

  • HELLSBELLS

    I guess if you cant stop smoking, but i think you are right it is for the booze.

  • BroJackson34

    The league has changed a bit.

  • inonewordraider

    Just Win Baby!

  • rifflicks

    he’s not being paid…..how is that a hit on the cap until he is reinstated

  • BroJackson34

    – $1.00

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    No it hasn’t.
    Teams still seek to win and take chances on players.

  • SB3

    Exactly, football is different. Throw political views out the door. Just care about our Raiders beating azz.

  • rifflicks

    try and collect

  • Morilla_00

    Alcohol is the killer.

  • SB3

    I agree, its about winning, but I really don’t think he’s that good anymore.

  • FriskiesR8R

    Jon Lyon@lyononTMZsports Aldon Smith did check into rehab, only its at St Vincent’s Hospital Orthopedic Center for a shoulder issue

  • DutchRaid

    Honestly, I have no idea, I hope you are right! Spotrac has him under a “special” place…but says he is 2.38% of our cap space.
    http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/oakland-raiders/cap/

  • EMRaiders

    Btw, there will be a vote in november in california to legalize marijuana for recreational use. Vote as u wish, but weed is no different than cigs or alcohol, except for being healthier than both. I know, its still bad for u, but i mean is not as bad. So if you are gonna keep weed illegal, you might as well make cigs and alcohol illegal as well.

  • BroJackson34

    I need to set up an account and link bloggers accounts up with it.

  • R8erEduc8er

    I’d cut ties. Our first negativity all offseason and it’s for a guy who won’t even play this year. He’s a distraction. He needs to be around football practicing to keep straight. It’s why Jack doesn’t like the “no contact” rule. Without football, he won’t get his act together imo.

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    He strikes me as just immature. Or spoiled.

    We should let him grow up with the Raiders lol.

  • Morilla_00

    It’s passing this time. It will be legal in CA. Book it.

  • rifflicks

    good luck with that

  • inonewordraider

    2018 isnt it?

  • BroJackson34

    lol

  • FriskiesR8R

    51 49 last time?

  • willy91137

    It is this stupid NFL he should should be allowed to go into the facility and he should be able to go to training camp

    and the NFL are to make pot legal like most of the country

    go home set on the couch with nothing to do but talk to your old friends that you drank and smoked with

  • inonewordraider

    Hes mad he cant find his teeth

  • FriskiesR8R

    Big ballot nov

  • EMRaiders

    I sure hope so. Been waiting a looong time. I have back pain and stomach issues and cant take the hard meds like oxy or vico, so weed is my only remedy for that. But wife wont let me get med card for fear of record keeping.

  • Morilla_00

    No major opposition this time around. I have freinds that are in the business of getting this through.

  • inonewordraider

    Oh snap and death penalty plastic bags condoms in porn, big ballot

  • ENGLANDRAIDER

    We don’t actually know. No one does.
    I still see picking him up as a smart move that should be played out.

    When he coached the whiners, Harbaugh eats big on him.

  • BroJackson34

    Legalize crack! Looking to get my speedo bod ready for summer.

    Beeech?

  • Fugazi

    Raiders added DL Derrick Lott to their roster,

  • EMRaiders

    Superbowl baby!

  • Your health and well being is more important than being on some government list.

    Tell your wife the government listens to her calls so there is no privacy anymore

  • inonewordraider

    What is edwards neck acting up?
    #lettheoverreactionsbegin

  • Morilla_00

    Nobody cares here anymore.

  • KevinDodd_DROY

    relation to Ronnie?

  • DutchRaid

    Only the Feds do…