Oakland Raiders Training Camp: News and Notes from Day 4
Stuart Kovacs – Aug 3, 2012
On Friday, the Oakland Raiders participated in their fourth day of training camp practice. Here are some news and notes from various reporters of the team.
Today’s practice had several things going on. It marked the first of three practices where fans could attend.
Fans had an opportunity last week to receive free tickets to the team’s practices by visiting any Raider Image store in the Oakland area. On Friday, there were more than 1,000 Raiders’ fans in attendance located on the far sideline, according to Steve Corkran’s Twitter page.
In addition to the fans being in attendance, so was the NFL Network. They had all-access coverage on the team throughout Friday’s training camp session.
Raiders’ owner Mark Davis and CEO Amy Trask were also in attendance, according to Paul Gutierrez’s Twitter page.
On the injury front, wide receiver Denarius Moore, to the surprise of many, returned to practice. According to Gutierrez, the second year player practiced with a brace-like piece of equipment covering his right calf.
According to Levi Damien’s Twitter page, Moore’s hamstring injury was clearly affecting him. He was unable to make the proper breaks and cuts that wide receivers need to make.
As far as the rest of the injuries go, punter Shane Lechler (knee), linebacker Aaron Curry (knee), cornerback Ron Bartell (hamstring), tight end Richard Gordon (hip) and defensive lineman Travis Ivey (conditioning) were all out of action once again, according to Gutierrez.
For the second straight practice, the Raiders didn’t sustain any significant injuries. The only injury related incident occurred when Corkran observed wide receiver Jacoby Ford’s left ankle was being worked on by the trainer. However, the former Clemson Tiger would resume practice shortly after and make an impact.
During the practice, there was continuous success from the players that have made big impacts over the first three days.
Cornerback DeMarcus Van Dyke continued his success taking over for the injured Ron Bartell. According to Corkran, the former Miami Hurricane intercepted a Carson Palmer pass and returned it for a touchdown. The pass was intended for wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey but it was thrown over his head.
In addition to the “pick six,” Van Dyke also broke up a deep throw in addition to having several moments of tight coverage.
As for the rest of the defense, today marked the first sign of the team practicing its 3-4 alignment. According to Corkran, the team was practicing several plays out of the 3-4 set. However, as per team rules, that is all the information that he was allowed to give.
Linebacker Rolando McClain had another strong showing, according to Vic Tafur’s Twitter page. After an early moment where Corkran observed the former University of Alabama star being “pancaked” by center Stefen Wisniewski, McClain rebounded and made several plays.
McClain had a few plays where he stopped the ball carrier in his tracks as well as a play where he blew up running back Mike Goodson, according to Gutierrez.
Safety Matt Giordano also made some nice plays. Tafur believes he is a viable option as the team’s third safety especially as fellow safety Michael Huff expects to move around a lot on defense.
On offense, quarterback Carson Palmer had another up and down session. According to Tafur, the former Southern California Trojan has not been as sharp in his last two practices as he had been in the first two.
After the interception he threw to Van Dyke, Palmer almost threw another one to Giordano after throwing in double coverage, according to Damien. Throughout the practice, Palmer was struggling with his accuracy as he overthrew receivers on several occasions.
However, Palmer would later rebound from his slow start as he threw a deep bomb to Jacoby Ford as the receiver beat cornerback Shawntae Spencer deep, according to Gutierrez.
Backup quarterbacks Matt Leinart and Terrelle Pryor also had decent days. According to Gutierrez, Leinart was much sharper than Palmer was throughout the practice.
The 2004 Heisman Trophy winner had several nice throws including a deep pass to Heyward-Bey who beat Chimdi Chekwa in coverage, Corkran observed.
As for Pryor, Corkran observed the former Ohio State Buckeye escaping the pressure of the defense, spinning, and completing a nice pass to wide receiver Rod Streater. This is a big improvement for Pryor who struggled during the first few days.
Wide receiver Juron Criner made an impact by having several nice catches. The rookie out of the University of Arizona had his best day of the week, according to Tafur. He made a remarkable catch in traffic even with Giordano there in coverage.
At the conclusion of practice, Dennis Allen and the entire Raiders’ team greeted the fans and signed autographs for them, according to Corkran. This was a nice gesture for the die-hard members of Raider Nation who spent their entire afternoon cheering on the team.
The fans who received free tickets will continue to be in attendance over the next two days. The Raiders will resume practice tomorrow at 2:20 PM PST.
Raider Nation Times will continue to monitor the team’s progress throughout the entire training camp period.
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