Jackson sees 'huge progress' in McFadden


Jackson sees 'huge progress' in McFadden

ALAMEDA -- While Darren McFadden still has not practiced since suffering a right mid-foot sprain against Kansas City on Oct. 23, the running back took in practice Wednesday "for the first time in a long time," according to coach Hue Jackson."I seen Darren McFadden without a boot, standing out here with his teammates todayso to me, that's huge progress," Jackson added. "Again, to know exactly where that is, I'll walk in, see our medical people and find out exactly where he is."So it was good. It was good. Again, not where we need to be yet, not there. But we're working at it, and like I said, he's getting closer to being back out here than not being back out there."
Still, it would take a minor miracle for McFadden to play Sunday at Minnesota, given that he has not practiced since being injured.You could say the same about receiverreturner Jacoby Ford, who has not practiced since spraining his left foot Thursday at San Diego.The rest of the Raiders' injury report for Wednesday, then:Did not practice: RB Darren McFadden (foot), WRKR Jacoby Ford (foot), FB Manase Tonga (knee), QB Jason Campbell (collarbone), PK Sebastian Janikowski (hamstring), DT Richard Seymour (ankle), CB Chris Johnson (hamstringgroin).Limited practice: C Samson Satele (knee), CB Chimdi Chekwa (hamstring), S Matt Giordano (neck), FS Michael Huff (ankle), S Mike Mitchell (ankle), CB DeMarcus Van Dyke (hamstring).

Donald Penn: Raiders players trust McKenzie will add right pieces

Donald Penn: Raiders players trust McKenzie will add right pieces

The Raiders were pretty darn good last season. A 12-4 record proved that point. There was plenty of talent on a team with a penchant for high-wire acts in victory that masked the fact there were holes on the roster.

They need to be filled for the Raiders to improve in 2017, and new players will be imported through free agency and the draft.

Left tackle Donald Penn is excited to see who gets added, but said there’s no doubt talent is coming to Oakland. He speaks for Raiders players, who have faith that general manager Reggie McKenzie will make the right moves.

“Things that Reggie has done in past drafts have been great, and we’re looking forward to seeing what he brings back towards us,” Penn said recently during an in-studio appearance on NFL Network. “We can’t wait to get back out there healthy. We’re ready to hit the football world with a storm.”

While new guys are coming, a few might head out. The Raiders have several unrestricted free agents. Penn wants to keep his guys around – he mentioned running back Latavius Murray by name -- though he has some ideas for McKenzie’s checklist.

The Raiders don’t need much with most key players under contract – the Raiders should be less active in free agency over past offseasons – but a few key components could put this team over the top.

“If we stick to Reggie’s plan, we’ll be great,” Penn said. “I know he’s going to have a great draft, add a couple little pieces here and there – maybe somebody in the secondary to help out a little bit.

"On offense, you could always use a weapon. Maybe we get another receiver to take (pressure off Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper), but we have a good nucleus right now.”

Raiders LT Donald Penn: QB Derek Carr 'almost 100 percent'

Raiders LT Donald Penn: QB Derek Carr 'almost 100 percent'

Derek Carr is on the mend. The Raiders franchise quarterback had surgery to repair his fibula shortly after he broke it in a Week 16 victory over Indianapolis, and is recovering well during the offseason.

Carr insisted on intense rehab this winter in an attempt – however unlikely it may have been – to return should the Raiders have played in the Super Bowl. It slowed to a normal pace after the Raiders' loss at Houston in the postseason’s opening round, but those in contact with him say he’s making strides.

Left tackle Donald Penn was recently in contact with Carr, and provided an update on Monday during an in-studio appearance on NFL Network.

“I texted Derek (a few) days ago checking in,” Penn said, “and he said he’s almost 100 percent.”

Surgically-repaired broken filbulas take significant time to heal, and the Raiders plan to be conservative with their MVP candidate during the offseason. Derek Carr’s brother and NFL Network analyst David Carr, who was on set with Penn on Monday, said Derek could be back for offseason work.

“He’s doing good,” David Carr said. “He’s walking around already, stretching it out. You can’t do a lot for the bone, right? But he’s going to be back. He’s going to get a whole full offseason in. That’s going to be the best part.”