Raiders notes: 1st, 2nd team defenses step up


Raiders notes: 1st, 2nd team defenses step up

Aug. 11, 2011


Paul Gutierrez

OAKLAND -- Hue Jackson admitted Wednesday morning he was not sure how he would divvy up playing time for the Raiders' exhibition opener. Especially to his starters.Well, it essentially went like this -- the first-string defense, which returns 10 of 11 starters, played one series, giving up one first down and 19 yards, 15 of which came on one Kevin Kolb scramble on 3rd and 10.The defensive starters: DE Lamarr Houston, DT Tommy Kelly, DT Richard Seymour, DE Matt Schaughnessy, WLB Quentin Groves, MLB Rolando McClain, SLB Kamerion Wimbley, CB Chris Johnson, CB Stanford Routt, FS Michael Huff, SS Tyvon Branch.Meanwhile, the first-string offense was on the field for two series, going 48 yards and getting a 39-yard Sebastian Janikowski field goal to start the scoring, before moving the ball from its own 1-yard line to the Arizona 34 before stalling and punting.

The offensive starters: LT Jared Veldheer, LG Daniel Loper, C Samson Satele, RG Cooper Carlisle, RT Khalif Barnes, TE Kevin Boss, QB Jason Campbell, FB Marcel Reece, RB Michael Bush, WR Chaz Schilens, WR Darrius Heyward-Bey.Barnes had a rough go of it. The seventh-year veteran was called for three -- count 'em -- three false starts. After his final call, he was in deep conversation with new offensive line coach Bob Wylie and rookie Joseph Barksdale.Good show for the second-team defense, stopping the Cardinals on 4th-and-goal from the one.Not such a good show for second-year cornerback Walter McFadden, who was flagged for two pass interference penalties and burned on a couple of notable occasions. Rookie DeMarcus Van Dyke was also used a few times by Larry Fitzgerald, as well as being beat on John Skelton's 18-yard TD pass to Stephen Williams.Safety Hiram Eugene, who was signed to a four-year, 10.25-million contract this offseason, was injured and carted off the field in the opening minutes of the second half. Trainers appeared to be working on his left knee, though late in the third quarter there had been no update on his injury.You think Janikowski likes kickoffs moving up five yards to the 35-yard line? His opening kickoff appeared to split the uprights. Yeah, that would have been a 65-yard field goal.Coincidence? The Raiders first two players introduced in pregame ceremonies were Routt and Johnson, perhaps sending a message to the departed Nnamdi Asomugha?

Raiders LT Donald Penn, WR Amari Cooper to skip Pro Bowl

Raiders LT Donald Penn, WR Amari Cooper to skip Pro Bowl

The Raiders had an NFL-best seven players on the initial Pro Bowl roster. The number planning to play in the league’s all-star game continues to dwindle.

That total's down to three after left tackle Donald Penn and receiver Amari Cooper bowed out. Penn won’t be ready after suffering a knee injury in the regular-season finale, an ailment that kept him out of a playoff loss at Houston. Cincinnati’s Andrew Whitworth will take Penn’s place.

Cooper battled a shoulder injury late last season, though it's uncertain exactly what is keeping him from the game. 

In addition to Penn and Cooper, Quarterback Derek Carr obviously can't play while recovering from surgery to repair a broken fibula. Edge rusher Khalil Mack also bowed out recently with what is believed to be a minor back injury.

There’s a possibility a fifth Raider will also excuse himself. Center Rodney Hudson suffered an ankle injury in the playoffs. It remains uncertain whether he’ll play in the Pro Bowl.

Safety Reggie Nelson and left guard Kelechi Osemele remain firmly in the fray at this stage. 

Source: Raiders, OL coach Mike Tice agree on new deal

Source: Raiders, OL coach Mike Tice agree on new deal

Mike Tice’s contract expired shortly after this season’s end, but there was strong belief he would retain his post with a new deal.

A league source confirmed Wednesday that a new deal was in place for Tice to remain with the Raiders. The exact length of the contract was not disclosed. Assistant coach contracts are typically set for two years, though they can be three in some cases.

Tice was the first assistant Jack Del Rio hired after being named Raiders head coach. The two are long-time friends, dating back to days playing for the Minnesota Vikings in the 1990s.

Tice was Del Rio’s assistant head coach for three seasons in Jacksonville, which made him a natural fit for a new project in Oakland. It was a smart hire. Tice has been excellent as Raiders offensive line coach, managing and scheming for one of the NFL’s best position groups.

ESPN first reported the Tice agreement.

While offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave was allowed to leave on an expired contract and is now Denver quarterbacks coach, the rest of the Raiders offensive staff remains intact.

Quarterbacks coach Todd Downing was promoted to offensive coordinator and his assistant Jake Peetz assumes his old post.

The Raiders still have a vacancy on the defensive side, with Marcus Robertson out and on to the Broncos staff.