The Oakland Raiders continue to plow through their offseason schedule, completing their mandatory mini-camp today. The goal this season is improvement. With all the new pieces, coaches, players, and schemes, these workouts are an important part of the process. The team won't come back together, in full, until late July for training camp.
“First of all, I’ll just say, I thought this was a good camp,” Raiders head coach Dennis Allen said. “I thought we improved. I thought we got better. I like this football team. I like their mentality. I like where we’re at. I like the way they’re working. Obviously, we’re going to give them some time off before we go to training camp, but I think we’re all anxious to get there and get the pads on and really see what we’ve got.”
A big storyline during the first day of camp was the play of quarterbacks Matt Flynn, Terrelle Pryor, and Tyler Wilson. Allen thought they were inconsistent on day one, but improved as the week went forward. The position will determine so much of what 2013 will bring. The competition will continue into training camp before someone is named the starter. Right now, development is still the goal and the results will follow.
“I think they’ve gotten better,” Allen said. “I really do. We’re not where we need to be yet, but we’re not playing tomorrow. I feel good about where we’re at from a quarterback standpoint. I think we’ve got some different elements at the quarterback position. I think all of them have their strengths and we have to try to put them in position to utilize their strengths.”
As the players and coaches break before training camp, a few positions are up for competition. Along the offensive line, guards Tony Bergstrom and Lucas Nix continue to swap first team reps at left guard. At cornerback, Tracy Porter, Mike Jenkins, Phillip Adams, and DJ Hayden, when he returns to health, will battle for playing time. The defensive line will pit Vance Walker, Pat Sims, and Christo Bilukidi against each other for two spots. The second, third, and fourth wide receiver spots are an open competition between Rod Streater, Juron Criner, Jacoby Ford, and Josh Cribbs. Three spots will be filled at linebacker out of Sio Moore, Miles Burris, Kevin Burnett, Nick Roach and Kaluka Maiava.
“Yeah, hey listen, we all have ideas and thoughts of where we’re at and you have a vision of what you think it’s going to look like, but really, at the end of the day, you let the competition play out,” Allen said. “It’ll tell you who should be in what positions. It always shakes out in the end, so I’ve been pleased with the competition really we’ve had throughout the football team.”
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