Raiders gear up for season opener in earnest

Raiders gear up for season opener in earnest
September 3, 2012, 3:23 pm
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The Raiders begin formal preparations today for their Monday night season opener against San Diego with a 53-man roster, an eight-player practice squad and, based on Thursday night's pratfall at Seattle by their second- and third-stringers, much to prove.As rookie coach Dennis Allen said after that lackluster 21-3 defeat to the Seahawks, the Raiders were not ready for primetime. At least, not the bottom of their depth chart."I don't know if (I'm) more concerned," Allen said. "That's been a concern, the depth of our roster. I think it just reconfirmed that we've got to upgrade the bottom half of the roster because our depth is a concern."In fact, Allen was asked about his team's toughness and discipline."Theres been progress in that regard," he said. "Obviously, we havent been perfect and were not going to be perfect, but weve made a lot of progress in that regard. I think we are a tough football team. I think we do have tough-minded people. I think weve played smart in situations. Weve executed some situational football really well. And then I do think some of that discipline is showing up on the field."A year after setting NFL single-season records for penalties and penalty yardage and averaging 10.2 penalties and 84.9 penalty yards per game, the Raiders averaged six penalties and 43.3 penalty yards in the exhibition season."Its still not the final product that were looking for," Allen said. "Were always going to strive for improvement and were looking for perfection, but I have seen improvement in that regard."Then came Friday's cuts to get the roster down from 75 to 53 players. Saturday's transactions saw three more players signed, and three others shown the door, so to speak."Were definitely looking and whatever moves we feelgive us a chance to be better, were going to make those moves," Allen said. "Were evaluating any and all positions to see if there is somebody out there that can help us."A look, then, at the Raiders' current 53-man rosterQuarterbacks (3)
Carson Palmer, Matt Leinart, Terrelle PryorRunning backs (5)
Darren McFadden, Marcel Reece, Taiwan Jones, Mike Goodson, Owen SchmittOffensive line (10)
Jared Veldheer, Cooper Carlisle, Stefen Wisniewski, Mike Brisiel, Khalif Barnes, Joseph Barksdale, Alex Parsons, Tony Bergstrom, Lucas Nix, Willie SmithTight ends (3)
Brandon Myers, Richard Gordon, David AusberryWide receivers (5)
Darrius Heyward-Bey, Denarius Moore, Jacoby Ford, Rod Streater, Juron CrinerDefensive line (8)
Lamarr Houston, Richard Seymour, Tommy Kelly, Matt Shaughnessy, Desmond Bryant, Dave Tollefson, Christo Bilukidi, Jack CrawfordLinebackers (6)
Miles Burris, Rolando McClain, Philip Wheeler, Travis Goethel, Carl Ihenacho, Keenan Clayton (Aaron Curry-PUP)Cornerbacks (6)
Ron Bartell, Shawntae Spencer, DeMarcus Van Dyke, Pat Lee, Coye Francies, Phillip AdamsSafeties (4)
Michael Huff, Tyvon Branch, Matt Giordano, Mike MitchellSpecialists (3)
PK Sebastian Janikowski, P Shane Lechler, LS Jon CondoPractice squad (8)
LB Nate Stupar, LB Kaelin Burnett, WR Travionte Session, WR Brandon Carswell, CB Chimdi Chekwa, DT Vaughn Meatoga, C Colin Miller, RB Jeremy Stewart.