The Raiders concluded the second day of their three-day mandatory mini-camp Wednesday. The players and coaches saw improvement from Day 1 and want to continue that progress on the final day of off-season on-field action. “I thought we had a nice practice today,” said Head Coach Dennis Allen. “Thought the tempo was good. I thought the execution was better today and I think our guys, one thing about them is, every time we challenge them I think they come back and respond. So I was pleased with the way they practiced today, really both sides of the ball as well as in the kicking game.”
“I think Day 2 went really well,” said TE David Ausberry. “Another day of progress and things are going smoothly. We’re able to get a lot of things in the playbook and put it on tape. Any time you’re able to do that and execute it, it’s a good thing.”
The defense also progressed from the first practice. “I thought our execution on defense was better. I think we’re running to the ball,” said Coach Allen. “I think we’re doing a great job of being able to get our hands up and knock some balls down at the line of scrimmage. I think every day we go out there, our guys get a little bit more comfortable working with each other. It gives us the ability to be a little bit more multiple, a little bit more flexible, in what we’re trying to do defensively.”
Veteran DE Lamarr Houston has watched his defense come together since the beginning of Organized Team Activities. “I think we look great. We have a lot of new players and I think we are gelling really well,” said Houston. “We are getting along and we’re learning this defense, and we’re working through all the kinks together. I think we are all on the same page and we understand what needs to be done. We are doing a really good job right now and where we want to finish before training camp.”
With only one more opportunity to work together as a full team before training camp, everyone wants to finish on a positive note. “We’ve got one more practice to go during this mini-camp. Then, there will be a little bit of time off for the players as we get ready for training camp,” said Coach Allen. “Obviously, we want to come out and finish strong tomorrow.”
Ausberry wants to leave a lasting impression on the coaches as the Raiders head into the break. “I want to finish up on a strong note and put whatever I can on film, show these coaches what I can do and what I can contribute to this offense,” said Ausberry.
The players look forward to reporting to training camp July 25, strapping on pads for the first time and playing football. “Right now everyone wants to put on pads, because right now things are just jerseys and shorts and helmets. When training camp comes around I will be really excited to get pads on along with the rest of my teammates,” said Houston. “But I think we are doing a great job as a defense. Everybody is doing their assignments really well and knowing where they need to be at the right time.”
The Silver and Black has developed its team chemistry, knowledge of the playbook, and ability to execute over the past month and will put everything into practice one last time Thursday.
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Tags: David Ausberry, Dennis Allen, Finish Strong, Lamarr Houston, Mandatory Mini-Camp, Oakland Raiders, Progress
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