Raiders' Ford: 'I'll be out there'

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Raiders' Ford: 'I'll be out there'

ALAMEDA -- Officially, Jacoby Ford is listed as "questionable" for Sunday's regular-season finale against San Diego.Realistically, the play-making receiver says he's not missing the game."Ill be out there," Ford said following Friday's practice. "If I practiced this much this week and I'm not out there, I'd be mad. I'll be out there, though."Until this week, Ford had not practiced since going down on Nov. 10 at San Diego. He sprained his left foot getting tackled by Dante Hughes after hauling on a 41-yard pass from Carson Palmer in the first quarter of the Raiders' eventual 24-17 victory at Qualcomm Stadium.Ford practiced in a limited role all week. As such, coach Hue Jackson cannot envision putting him in the game as the kick returner.
"I'm glad to have him back out but I don't want to put him in a situation where he can't do what he's accustomed to doing," Jackson said. "I don't know that he's totally there yet, but he's close. I think the guys that have been returning for us have done a great job so I'll kind of probably stay in that direction until we get him back totally healthy."The way right tackle Khalif Barnes sees it, he has two of his Ferraris back in his garage. Ford is the yellow ride, Denarius Moore is the red one and Darren McFadden is the black one."If I play a lot, if I play a little, I'm just going to try to make the best of it that I can," Ford said."We know what type of game it is -- it's a big game, but we're not looking at it as something to put pressure on ourselves. Then you'll be uptight and you won't play loose and relaxed. We're just going to go out there and play the game the way we need to go out there and play. Were going to play hard and play fast and try to be a physical team."

Raiders OC Todd Downing: New weapons will 'make me look good'

Raiders OC Todd Downing: New weapons will 'make me look good'

STANFORD – Todd Downing has long been responsible for intently analyzing college quarterbacks entering the NFL Draft. He certainly did so during two seasons as Raiders quarterbacks coach, adding input to personnel department evaluations on young signal callers.

This offseason, he’s using a wide-angle lens. Downing is the Raiders offensive coordinator now, promoted to the position after Bill Musgrave was allowed to leave on an expired contract.

Coaches enter the draft evaluation process relatively late – they have a season to coach, after all – but Downing prides himself on working hard in evaluating talent. Working with general manager Reggie McKenzie’s staff, coaches feel like their voice is being heard.

That’s important to a coordinator especially, who must make a scheme work with talent around him.

“Reggie and his staff have always done a tremendous job of listening to our vision for the offense or the defense,” Downing said Thursday at Stanford’s pro day. “It’s been a joy to work with those guys over the past three years.

“(Head coach Jack Del Rio) really expects us to be accountable for our position group. Now that I’m the coordinator, there’s more of a broad scope when looking at offensive talent in the draft. When you work that hard (evaluating players), I think the scouts know that your opinion is well grounded, and that validates it a little bit.”

Downing is always on the lookout for weapons, especially while making tweaks to the Raiders offense. The Silver and Black found a few, adding tight end Jared Cook, receiver Cordarrelle Patterson, offensive lineman Marshal Newhouse and quarterback EJ Manuel.

Quarterback Derek Carr helped him get some. The full-time East Bay resident has been active recruiting free agents, trying to improve an already strong Raiders offense.

“You guys know how passionate he is about this game, and about this team and backing up this franchise,” Downing said. “(His involvement in recruiting) didn’t surprise any of us. He’s pretty hands on when it comes to football. He lives in the area, so he hopped in when we needed it and it paid off.”

Cook and Patterson especially could add dimensions to a well-rounded Raiders attack. Cook has made some big plays in the past, and should be a reliable receiving tight end the Raiders have lacked in recent seasons.

“He has a skill set that will be fun to play with (schematically),” Downing said. “We’re excited to see what he can do, and I know Derek is excited to add him. He has a history of making plays in this league, and that’s something we’re excited to have.”

Patterson’s primarily known as a kick returner – he’s a two-time All Pro on special teams – but the Raiders hope he’ll be active on offense.

“With guys like that, you just find a way to get them the rock and let them do the rest of the work,” Downing said. “They make me look good. I can call a simple play and he takes it the distance and it looks like I designed something special.”

Week after signing with Vikings, ex-Raiders RB Murray undergoes surgery

Week after signing with Vikings, ex-Raiders RB Murray undergoes surgery

A week after signing a deal with the Vikings, former Raiders running back Latavius Murray has undergone ankle surgery.

The Vikings made the announcement Wednesday afternoon.

Minnesota issued the following statement regarding the surgery:

"Vikings RB Latavius Murray had successful ankle surgery today. The surgery was performed by Dr. Bob Anderson in Charlotte, North Carolina. We were aware of the required surgery prior to signing Latavius on March 16. Latavius is expected to fully recover and be available for training camp."

Murray's deal with the Vikings is reported worth $15 million over three years, but can reportedly be voied after the first year.

Drafted in the sixth round of the 2013 NFL Draft, Murray became the Raiders' primary running back midway through the 2015 season. In his three years in Oakland, Murray carried the ball 543 times for 2,278 yards and 12 touchdowns. He was named to the Pro Bowl in 2015.