Oakland Raiders: Practice News and Notes from Tuesday August 28
Stuart Kovacs – Aug 28, 2012
On Tuesday, the Oakland Raiders participated in practice as they prepare for Thursday’s game against the Seattle Seahawks. Here are some news and notes as well as what head coach Dennis Allen had to say afterwards.
The biggest news coming into Monday’s practice was the signing of wide receiver and kick returner Roscoe Parrish.
The team brought in the seven-year veteran to help out in the return game, which has been unimpressive throughout the preseason.
Allen said that Parrish will play on Thursday and that the team will continue to look through the waiver wires to see if any other players can be brought in.
“We wanted a chance to take a look at him, especially as a punt returner. It’s like I said before, we’re watching the waiver wires to see if there is anybody that’s got a chance to help us. We’ll get a chance to get him out there, return some kicks on Thursday night, and see what we’ve got.”
The former second-round draft pick of the Buffalo Bills will be mostly utilized as a punt returner despite his skills as a slot receiver, according to Allen.
“He’s got some quickness in the slot, but he’s primary purpose is to come in and see what he can do as a punt returner.”
In order to make room for Parrish on the 75-man roster, the team waived/injured offensive lineman Zach Hurd who has missed several straight practices with a head injury.
The media was once again limited to only viewing the first 30 minutes of practice as well as interviews afterwards.
On the injury front, Allen wasn’t sure if kicker Sebastian Janikowski, who is suffering from a groin injury, practiced fully on Tuesday.
However, he doesn’t anticipate Janikowski’s injury being a problem and said that the former first-round pick could kick on Thursday if the team needed him to.
“I don’t know if he kicked today, but I don’t anticipate that being any issue at all. I think he’s capable of going. Whether we kick him or not, I don’t know.”
Tight end Richard Gordon, who missed the past few practices and Saturday’s game against the Detroit Lions with injured ribs, returned to practice on Tuesday, according to Vic Tafur’s Twitter page.
Defensive lineman Richard Seymour (knees), wide receiver Jacoby Ford (left foot),linebacker Aaron Curry (knees), wide receiver Denarius Moore (hamstring), defensive back Pat Lee (back), and offensive lineman Stefen Wisniewski (right calf) all missed practice once again with injuries, according to Paul Gutierrez’s Twitter page.
Right before the media window closed, all six players walked onto the field to observe practice, Gutierrez observed.
Although he hasn’t run yet, Ford is somewhat close to returning as is fellow wide receiver Denarius Moore. Allen is going to let both players take their time in returning to action.
“I think they’re close, but I don’t know if close means tomorrow, the next day, or exactly when that means. I hope close means real soon.”
After practice, Allen talked about the fine line of playing time for players during the fourth week of preseason.
While he obviously doesn’t want any of his starters to get injured, Allen and the entire coaching staff will evaluate each player on an individual basis in terms of playing time against the Seahawks.
“Well, no one wants to see anyone get hurt, you know what I mean? This whole preseason, it’s a delicate balance of getting guys reps and getting them ready to play opening night of the season and working them too much where you’re wearing them down for the season. All of us only have so many shots in our body. So you don’t want to use them all up in the preseason and yet you have to do enough work that you get better. That’s the fine line we walk as coaches and we’ll evaluate that before this game and figure out exactly how much we want to play certain guys.”
Allen also talked about third-year linebacker Rolando McClain, who has a lot to prove this season both on and off of the field.
He said that despite pleasing him so far, the former University of Alabama star still has more work to do if he wants to be great in this league. It will be the coaches’ jobs to get him where he needs to be.
“I have been pleased. Yeah, I have been pleased. Hey, listen, he’s still got work to do. He’s still needs to get better at certain things. We’re constantly coaching him, but that’s part of what our job is. All of us have to get better, so we’re working on different things. He’s been coming to work every day with the right attitude trying to get better and that’s all we can ask out of anybody.”
In terms of his legal proceedings and possible suspension, Allen isn’t worried about something that may or may not happen. If McClain does wind up getting suspended, Allen says that the team is prepared.
“It hasn’t been a distraction to this point yet. We can’t sit around here and say, ‘what if, what if, what if…” We’ve got plans in place and then if, and when, that situation arises, then we’ll act on it. I’m not going to spend my whole time trying to figure out what are we going to do.”
On Tuesday, the Washington Redskins released veteran tight end Chris Cooley.
Many around the league are speculating that the Raiders could be a possible destination for the former All-Pro.
While Allen would not comment on Cooley specifically, he did reiterate that the team will continue to examine players that become available at each and every position.
“We’re going to look at anybody that comes available. I don’t care what the position is. If we feel like a guy can make us better, then we’re going to look at it. I wouldn’t single out the tight end position as with any other position. What you do in the National Football League is you try to get better every single day and part of the deal is when people come across the waiver wire, people get released from other teams, you’re looking. We’ll look at anybody.”
David Ausberry, who has competed against Brandon Myers and Richard Gordon for the starting tight end position, has had a mediocre camp, according to Allen.
The former wide receiver at USC has made some very athletic plays but has also made countless mental errors.
“David has been a little up and down. He’s really made some nice plays athletically and then he’s had his mental lapses, but he’s still a young player. And he’s a young player with talent and I’m excited to get an opportunity to work with him.”
The Raiders will continue their preparation for Thursday’s game against the Seahawks.
Raider Nation Times will continue to monitor the team’s progress as they prepare for the 2012 NFL season.
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