Thursday, July 25, 2013

Take Five: Camp Fever Edition

1. I love it when camp begins in Napa Valley. At Redwood Middle School, no less. It's not quite the El Rancho Tropicana in Santa Rosa, where camp was held during the rowdy heyday of the 1970s, but it's still a quirky place to hold an NFL training camp, very NorCal, and very Raiders.

2. I don't know what to think of "number gate," with Tracy Porter complaining about his number 24 being "taken" and given to Charles Woodson. A courtesy heads-up was probably in order. Then again, Porter hasn't played an official snap with the Raiders, so he shouldn't be bitching about it on social media. Here's my advice to Porter: Get to work.

3. Keep an eye on Rod Streater. We need a breakout receiver. He could be the one.

4. One of these quarterbacks needs to step up. Now, big time. We can't afford a shitshow at quarterback. We need Matt Flynn to have a Matt Schaub-like impact, not a Derek Anderson/Kevin Kolb-like meltdown. And if not him, then Pryor or Wilson. Someone, anyone.

5. The newly signed D.J. Hayden makes me nervous. We can't be whiffing on first-round picks right now. He not only needs to stay healthy after a life threatening injury, followed by post-draft abdominal surgery; he needs to become a shutdown corner. It's a tall order. I hope he can fill it.


Anonymous JONES said...

Hayden will be fine, he had some scare tissue removed, that was his second surgery. With some solid Vets around him, he'll be fine.

QB is a position of worry and will be until a solid starter is proven there.

O-Line will look much different, very good coach at that spot with young talent and a preferred scheme. This looks like an area to see big improvement.

Defense will be improved across the board.

WR's have been a problem for a while, if these young guys can be 'coached up' in a hurry, this position could surprise.

Special Teams will be better with better depth on the team.

I predicted AFC West Title last year, I'll tone that down and say 7-9 to 9-7 this year. I see a more solid team going in one direction...that can only be a good thing, right?


10:43 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

All good points, RT.

Number gate is a joke. What was Porter holding out for?

Streater and co all need to step up, but it will greatly depend on the quality of play at QB. I guess we should find out quickly if Flynn lost his job to Russell Wilson because Wilson is a freak or because Flynn never had it.

I'm not ready to make any bold predictions for 2013. There are way too many uncertainties. At this point, maybe the power rankings approach is a good one....#32 until proven otherwise.

4:33 AM  
Anonymous JONES said...

Forgot to mention the # 24 BS. Porter, sit down and pass the was never yours and Woodson has earned the #. Not a good way for Porter to start with this team....if he has a bad year, his career could be over, so he better become a team guy, QUICKLY.


9:06 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

I would also note that should Hayden get back to full speed and be able to play this year, his injury is a non-issue.

However, if he can't play (he is currently listed inactive) then all responsibility rests squarely on Reggie McKenzie.

Question is, did the Raiders really do their homework in determining Hayden's health? IMO, if there was any doubt, Hayden should not have been the pick.

No question this is one of the biggest stories in camp and for the Raiders this season.

9:35 AM  
Anonymous JONES said...

Hayden was just cleared for practise. He was late getting his Physical because of late contract signing and this is why he was put on that list in the 1st place. But once again, the negative fans can't wait to go "OH NO". It's cool, DJ is alright and will play well, as will Watson, he missed the Physical too and once he is cleared, it's all good. Raider fans are a funny bunch, so used to a failing Org, it's like they only feel comfortable when things are a mess. Stop wishing for a mess and start looking at the movement forward.


10:56 AM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

I'm very excited to see CWood roaming the field and the opponent needing to account for him and where he is lined up. CWood is a nice chess piece that can moved all over the board and utilized like a Swiss brand army knife.

To me the 2 big stories will be the QB position and DJ Hayden.

1:31 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Lol! What's negative? It's a wait and see approach. For someone that regularly bashed others for pre-season optimism, you seem to have developed your own "crew" mentality.

2:50 PM  
Anonymous JONES said...

NYR, it's only the start of Camp and you are already in late season form. Just can't wait to argue, huh?

Did I write NYR is negative? Settle down Honey, we still have a ways to go. I didn't know you were the only other Raider fan in the rest of the World?

You have stated before that "this isn't your only gig", so, you must see that there are plenty of Raider fans out there just wishing this new regime falls on their faces. So every little move that they see as NEGATIVE, they can't wait to jump on it and say "see, it's a mess". Hayden is fine, you questioned his health/mental state from the day he was drafted, so you might have a horse in this race? You have been acting like DJ is a question mark for this year, right? Is that a "wait and see"? Your axe needs sharpening?


4:22 PM  
Anonymous JONES said...

Also, if you cannot understand why I bashed those "crew" members was because they were backing a losing formula. You are bashing this new regime before they even had time to get their feet wet. I think there is a slight difference, but don't let get in the way of a good putdown, hey NYR?


4:26 PM  
Anonymous sactown raider said...

Having grown up in Napa I love it that this is now the "summer home" of my team. I only wish practices were more open.

Tracy Porter--I'm with Jones and RT on this one: sit down, shut up, get to work and learn something from one of the best to play the game at the position!

I think Rod Streater and the other receivers, especially Jacoby and DeNarius, are going to surprise us with how well they play.

Flynn will get the job done.

JD Hayden will be starting before the end of the season. He's been through a lot, missed a lot, and his body and mind for football need to adjust.

Overall, this team will put up a good fight and if teams take the Raiders lightly, they may get a rude awakening. I don't see playoffs or a winning record, but a very competitive team with a 6-10 or 7-9 record would be a big improvement.

10:24 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Jones - It's a new season and a new set of circumstances. You don't believe a "wait and see" approach is valid?

Btw, pretending your on-topic response directly below my post had nothing to do with me... that's rich! Who's in mid-season form?


8:47 AM  
Anonymous JONES said...

I DON'T believe you are taking a "wait and see", you are criticizing the 1st RD pick, the Coaching etc without giving it a chance 1st....I believe in getting behind the new regime and supporting them. What they have took over and are turning around was a total disaster. I see they are doing things the right way and are committed to giving US a good product. So I will stand behind them and support them.

This is what fans are supposed to do. You can sit there and nit pick everything, just waiting for the house to burn, go ahead. We are miles ahead of what it USED TO BE and I thank the new regime for that.

I complained in the past because it was WARRANTED.

Also, that post was a generalization of much of the Raider Nation. Not once did I mention NYR, but cry if you must.


10:38 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

LOL. Jones you're like a child sometimes; you like to pretend. Now you're telling me my opinions. Do you have any boundaries, Jones?

My question regarding Hayden was whether or not the Raiders truly did their homework on his mental and physical health. I think it's a question a lot of fans share. I don't know the answer, but I'm really anxious to find out... and certainly hope for the best possible results.

Why do you have a problem with that?

Is it because you have dug deep into your new "crew" persona.

11:30 AM  
Anonymous JONES said...

You like to 'project'. You questioned taking DJ the day he was drafted, you told your opinions. You don't like DA as the HC, you told your opinions.

Your Goal in life should be to get a little wiser with each passing year...NYR, you are going the wrong way. Reading your comments these past years, has proven to me that you are actually getting DUMBER as time passes, good job, NYR.


12:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the team seems to have less talent than last year its really sad. I aint hating I love my raiders for 37 years. I hope I turn out to be wrong but makes me miss 8-8
Good blog

6:59 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Jones - You're in mid-season strawman form. Have you been practicing your strawman on other blogs as preparation for the 2013 season on this site?

Excuse me for being the only person "dumb" enough to question Hayden's ability to return to football and play at a high level after his life-threatening injury.

You want to make it sound like I'm rooting for Hayden to fail but that couldn't be further from the truth.

It's a little early to be weaving your strawman web isn't it?

8:53 AM  
Anonymous JONES said...

As Foghorn Leghorn used to say.....AHHHHHH SHUTTTT UUUUPPPP. I hope someone kicks you right in the pussy.


9:41 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

Thanks, Steve, keep 'em coming!

12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to see Pryor play that is a lot more exciting than Flynn

7:37 PM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

I drove through Sonoma/Napa to Santa Rosa last weekend, unfortunately, it was not camp related, but funeral related.
Living in TX the past 13 years, I was excited to see all the cars with Silver/Black flags everywhere. I'm hoping one day I will be able to take my son to a training camp, or better yet, a game in Oakland. It was good to be home.
With that said, the Raiders still have huge holes offensively. Right now, they are built with an offense that just needs to get it done. Hand the ball off to McFadden and Murray, and make accurate passes when needed. This is why I think Wilson may overtake Flynn for the starter. Dude has zip on his passes and is extremely accurate. I want to see him start the first preseason game and see how he is able to read first team defenses, and make adjustments. Then come in for a few plays during the regular season.
I'd also rather deal with the injury bug now, than in the middle of the season, so I'm holding out and hoping this is the worst of it for the year. Most of it is due to guys who show up out of shape and try to push themselves back into shape. This is going to have to be an off-season fix for our Strength/Conditioning coach. This kind of thing has plagued us the past decade or so.
I'm still optimistic that we are going to surprise the League this season. I hope the team has a chip on their shoulder (like I do) about what some in the League are saying about the team in general.

10:05 AM  
Anonymous JONES said...

By the sounds of it, Wilson is way down on the 'learning curve' to be considered a starter. Being able to throw a 'fast ball' isn't the only requirement for a QB. Just like running (Pryor) isn't the only requirement. Flynn will start, he is the most polished/experienced QB on the roster.

Injuries happen all throughout the League, look around, many SEASON ENDING injuries already. Raiders haven't had 1 of those (knock on wood).

Raiders are definitely on the 'right track' and it is good to watch players competing for jobs instead of being anointed their positions.

I agree that the Raiders will surprise the 'experts'...I say the year hinges on the DEFENSE, if they can play consistent and keep the injuries to a Min....they can make some noise. Go Raiders


3:37 PM  
Anonymous JONES said...

Sounds like DHB is flopping in Indy...hey, at least he can block, right?

Dick Seymour is DONE and the rest of the castoffs will be out of the League soon.

I'm so glad I am not reading about how DHB is STILL working on how to catch the ball...or Mike Huff looking to finally fulfill his potential...or how Shaugnessy is a top 10 pass rusher in the League. I know 1 thing after this year, Jacoby Ford will no longer be injured at a Raiders training camp.

It's fresh in Raiderland and it's so good to see a well functioning Org that is doing everything they can to produce a winner or at least a good product on the field. To early to bash it and from what they have done, can only get behind it and support it, Go Raiders.

3:46 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

I'm very interested to see how our newly revamped D does. The one initial concern excluding the 9 new starters, is the pass rush. My hope is that DA and the coaching staff use some exotic blitz packages to compensate for a limited # of true pass rushers in the front 4. Safety blitz especially with CWood and using rookie LB Moore will be a key in my book.

6:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Q: Looking from last year to this year, what is the feel like from your standpoint, coach?

Coach Allen: Well I said it before, I like this team. I like their mindset and their mentality, the way they go about their business. We’re going to be a tough, physical football team, and we’re going to be a mentally tough team. That’s the challenge I’ve put forth to this team, and they’ve responded.

10:47 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Skimming with wire I saw that Raiders signed Jano to an extension. For all the purging that McKenzie has done (Lechler included), and rightly so, this was a tremendous decision. IMO, Jano has come into his own and become the best place kicker in football. I like this move!

5:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Getting my preseason chops in,,,

Because this edition of the Raiders has sooo many new starters, should the 1st team play longer in the preseason games?


3:56 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

IMO, playing time should be based on experience and competition. For positions that are secured by vet players, less is more. Guys like Woodson, Carter and McFadden shouldn't play much at all.

Conversely, Flynn should play a lot in pre-season.

4:52 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Very trick balance with giving reps. during exhibition season. IMO, you've got to give the draftees, undrafted FAs, and boarderline players an opportunity to be properly evaluated.

8:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


What concerns me to a small extent is the "gelling" factor. It takes time doesn't it for a unit to sync and play in rhythm? With so many new starters on defense, I feel like the whole unit should play more in the preaseason. Not because the vets need the time, but because everyone else needs to know what each man can and cannot do. This extends to everyone...Just my two cents.
Still happy with the direction of this team, and I feel there will be improvement. What I would potentially like to avoid is the team that loses games early in the season because of not knowing each other, and then finishes strong and we are left asking what if...


7:13 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

SCAR - IMO what you describe at the end of your post has a high probability. That's part of the rebuilding process... and we should be so lucky that the team shows vast improvement by the end of the season.

It will take a perfect storm of coaching, talent and execution for the Raiders to come out of the gate strong. That's my 2 cents.

5:35 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

I'm excited to see the exhibition game vs. the Cowgirls on Friday night. It will be interesting to see all the new faces on D.

6:37 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

The game starts at 10:00 but isn't scheduled on NFL network until 10:30... What gives? Won't viewers miss the 1st quarter?

3:26 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

...Eastern Standard Time.

3:27 PM  

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