Watson falling further behind

Allen: 'We're going to be a mentally tough football team'

Watson falling further behind
August 1, 2013, 8:15 pm
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Anytime you’re a rookie and you’re not able to get out here and compete and learn – especially a guy like him that hasn’t played a lot of football – he needs all the reps he can get
Dennis Allen on Menelik Watson

NAPA – Menelik Watson has missed all of training camp and still doesn’t have a timetable to return.

The rookie offensive tackle remains on the active non-football injury list with an undisclosed injury suffered just before training camp. Coach Dennis Allen said the ailment isn’t season-threatening, but the missed time threatens his ability to make an immediate impact.

The Raiders hoped their second-round draft pick would push Khalif Barnes at right tackle and possibly earn a starting spot during camp, but that prospect is increasingly remote.

Time missed hurts all rookies, but Watson more than most considering how new he is to the game. The Englishman has just two years football experience and just one playing major-college football at Florida State.

In other words, the second-round pick needs all the coaching he can get. In terms of progress, Watson’s injury is incredibly ill-timed.

“Anytime you’re a rookie and you’re not able to get out here and compete and learn – especially a guy like him that hasn’t played a lot of football – he needs all the reps he can get,” Allen said. “With that being said, he’s working extremely hard to get back out here. Injuries are part of the game. There’s nothing we can do about it other than try to do everything we can to get him rehabbed as fast as possible.”

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