Raiders make hiring of six coaches official

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Raiders make hiring of six coaches official

Reports have been leaking over the past few weeks of recent coaching hires by the Raiders. None were confirmed by the team until their press release Tuesday afternoon.

Below is the official release sent out by the team:

The Oakland Raiders have added six more assistants to the 2012 coaching staff including two who are in their second stints with the Silver and Blackquarterbacks coach John DeFilippo, wide receivers coach Ted Gilmore, tight ends coach Mark Hutson, defensive backs coach Clayton Lopez, defensive backs coach Johnnie Lynn and defensive line coach Terrell Williams.

DeFilippo, who coached quarterbacks for the Silver and Black from 2007-08, served in the same capacity at San Jose State for the last two seasons. He was also the assistant quarterbacks coach with the New York Jets in 2009.
NEWS: Defilippo returning as Raiders QB coach

Gilmore enters his first season on an NFL staff after coaching at the collegiate level for 17 seasons. Most recently, Gilmore served as wide receivers coach at USC in 2011. Gilmore spent six years (2005-10) at Nebraska coaching wide receivers and was the Cornhuskers' recruiting coordinator for four years (2007-10).

NEWS: USC's Gilmore named Raiders WR coach

Hutson also enters his first season on an NFL staff. A 25-year veteran of the college game as both a player and coach, Hutson spent the past five seasons as an assistant at Tulane and served as the interim head coach for the Green Wave in 2011.

An assistant for 17 years at the NFL level, Lynn coached defensive backs for the Philadelphia Eagles last season. Lynn joined Philadelphia after five seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, serving as secondary coach and assistant head coach from 2009-10. Lopez returns to the Raiders after serving in a similar capacity with the Silver and Black for two seasons (2004-05).

NEWS: Raiders add Lynn, Hutson to coaching staff

Lopez was most recently with the St. Louis Rams where he served as defensive backscornerbacks coach for three seasons (2009-11). Williams comes to Oakland after spending the previous two seasons in the same capacity at Texas A&M, helping the Aggies to a pair of bowl game appearances.

NEWS: Raiders hire Terrell Williams

Williams previously served as the defensive line coach at Purdue (2006-09) and coached the defensive line at Akron (2004-05) and Youngstown State (2002-03).

Cooper seeks counsel from former All-Pro Lions WR, Raiders guest

Cooper seeks counsel from former All-Pro Lions WR, Raiders guest

ALAMEDA -- Todd Downing and Calvin Johnson go way back. The Raiders offensive coordinator got to know the retired Detroit receiver during four seasons coaching Lions quarterbacks, a relationship benefitted current Silver and Black receivers this week.

Johnson is in Alameda as a special guest and advisor for the first week of Raiders OTAs, offering tips and tricks learned during an excellent career.

“(Downing) thought it’d be a great idea for our wide receivers to just pick his brain and have him be around and give us a point here or there,” Del Rio said. “Talk about some of the things that he did so well in his career and how we might be able to have some of our guys learn from that. It’s great to have him out here.”

Amari Cooper gravitated towards Johnson, and has spent significant time picking his brain

“I’ve just been asking him a whole bunch of questions,” Cooper said after Tuesday’s OTA session. “How does he run certain routes? What was his regimen like? And how he was so productive? He’s a really cool guy. He’s been giving me some really great feedback, so he’s nice to have around.”

Johnson’s a unique talent, a difficult cover at 6-foot-5, 236 pounds. Cooper operates in a smaller frame and has different receiving strengths, but still found wisdom in working with Megatron.

“He just gave me some really good tips on like how I can run some of my routes,” Cooper said. “…he’s a different receiver than I am, obviously. But I really admire the way he high-points the ball and that’s something that I try to do as well.”

Cooper does most everything well, and has had a productive start to his NFL career. He’s just the third receiver in NFL history to exceed 70 receptions and 1,000 yards in each of his first two seasons – Odell Beckham and Marques Colston are the others – and made the Pro Bowl after both campaigns.

He continues to tinker with his approach and offseason workouts, trying to finish seasons stronger and become an even more dynamic player. Cooper has no problem learning from others, especially the greats.

“I seek advice all the time,” Cooper said. “My rookie year, when I was fortunate enough to go to the Pro Bowl, I asked Adrian Peterson like when did he start working out, how did he go about his offseason. And I tried to pattern after him a little bit.”

Cooper is smarter and working better thanks to information absorbed from others, which he hopes will help him become a deadly weapon.

“I know he’s just scratching the surface of what he wants to accomplish in this league,” head coach Jack Del Rio said. “Very prideful. Amari has always been very serious about the game and works hard at everything, really. His conditioning level and understanding what he needs to be able to do to play at a high level. Again, talking and having a guy like Calvin here as we’re getting started in these OTAs, to be able to share some of the insight of what he experienced playing that position is very valuable for us.”

 

Lynch 'soaking up the system,' easing into Raiders OTA practices

Lynch 'soaking up the system,' easing into Raiders OTA practices

ALAMEDA – Marshawn Lynch didn’t bring his helmet to Tuesday’s OTA practice. Didn’t need it then, or on Monday. It's uncertain when he'll need it next.

Not for a cameo appearance during individual drills. The veteran running back wasn’t available during team sessions, and spent most of the two-hour practice working in the team’s performance center.

Lynch skipping full-speed work isn’t cause for alarm. First of all, it’s May. Second, Lynch is in great shape but still ramping back up after a season away from NFL football. It would make sense to ease him back in during the spring.

Head coach Jack Del Rio didn’t say when Lynch’s activity would increase, but wasn’t concerned one bit about Lynch’s limited OTA participation – he routinely skipped them while playing in Seattle -- and praised the Oakland native’s level of involvement in the Raiders offseason program since a new contract was worked out and his rights were acquired from Seattle on April 26.

“He’s coming along. He’s doing great. There are no issues there,” Del Rio said. “He has been here like he said he would. He has really been committed. He said, ‘Coach, this is home for me. It’s not like I’m going home and I won’t be here. He is committed to being here and is excited to be a Raider. We’re excited to have him.”

Lynch was on the practice field for some team periods analyzing plays with offensive teammates, and was working out with them after the session. Del Rio didn’t delve into when Lynch’s on-field activity would increase, but there’s no reason to rush a veteran player who ultimately must be ready come September.

“He’s doing great,” Del Rio said. “He’ll continue to do the things we’re asking him to do. He is really soaking up the system, and has done a great job fitting in.”

That’s clear. He gets on well with left tackle Donald Penn and kicker Sebastian Janikowski, and gravitates toward fellow former Seahawks like edge rusher Bruce Irvin and defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. General manager Reggie McKenzie said last week Lynch was already entrenched in the Raiders locker-room culture, which was evident in how teammates talked about him.

“Getting Marshawn has been great,” Penn said. “He brings a lot of energy here and a lot of momentum. It feels good having him here. We joke around a lot, having fun. You all probably don’t know Marshawn, but he’s a pretty funny guy. He’s really cool, and it’s good having him around here.”