And so it was that I made my first visit to a Raiders training camp practice. The Good was no possibility of injuries due to non padded practice and no contact. I did see second year wide receiver Travionte Session limping around badly during practice, but for all I know it could've been a bad bunion that was irritating him.
More Good was the explosiveness of Jacoby Ford, Jeremy Stewart, Marcel Reece, Rod Streater and Brice Butler. Those were the players I had the opportunity to catch more action glimpses of. There really wasn't any Bad, other than not getting a chance to see rookie RB Lativius Murray who's nursing an injury. The explosive rookie out of UCF battled injuries in college.
On a day that began with overcast Napa skies a beautiful sea of silver and black clad fans ended the training session cheering their team under blue and sunny skies. It wasn't as fun and explosive as I'd hoped, but seeing the Raiders up-close and running plays was really a summertime treat. We all miss footbal, Raiders Football.
Free agent quarterback Matt McGloin showed the poise and smarts that got him a look-see, while draft pick Tyler Wilson had some nice zip on his throws. Can't say I saw much of Matt Flynn. As for Terrelle Pryor, I want to see him give the offense that extra weapon with his running ability. He looked as good as any passing.
No pads, therefore the Defense were nothing more than bodies on the field, but it was good to see C Wood out their dressed in black. Just a great day, thanks Raiders.
Oh, almost forgot the ugly; rookie receiver Andre Holmes entertained the crowd with his repeated drops and dejected body language. Couldn't blame "Hey Holmes" for everything, a few of the balls thrown his way were off the mark. But on a day when all receivers seemed to be snatching every pass gracefully out of the skies, Holme's misfortunes were animated. At least "Hey Holmes" now knows should he make the team what to expect from Raiders fans; their expectations of players wearing silver and black are nothing short of excellence.
The fans had fun cheering and jeering Holmes throughout the training day session, but come the regular season dropped passes are seldom forgiven. Work it out Holmey, work it out!
I was impressed with #85, free agent rookie wide receiver Sam McGuffie. He has quickness, toughness and you can smell his fearlessness on the field returning punts and/or kickoffs. Something a bit Wes Welker-like in this young man out of Rice. I hope to see him play this Friday when the Dallas Cowboys come to Oakland. McGuffie is definitely one tough Mick I'd like to see make the team. He's ol'skool football, I like'em!
More on McGuffie -
McGuffie became a YouTube
star during his High School days. Most notably for hurdling over a
defender, stepping on his back and continue running for the touchdown.
Win, Lose or Tie!