Who is Van Dyke's biggest fan, and critic?


Who is Van Dyke's biggest fan, and critic?

NAPA -- There's a seeming, well, wholesome honesty to DeMarcus Van Dyke that endears him to the fans.Take Tuesday for example, when the second-year cornerback who wears his Miami hometown pride on his sleeve let reporters into his personal life when talking about his offseason."I went home and my mama told me, DeMarcus, Im your No. 1 fan, but you dropped too many interceptions last year,'" Van Dyke said. "So this year, Im trying to work on catching the ball and turning my head when the ball is in the air and stuff like that."RELATED: DeMarcus Van Dyke career stats 2011 Game logs
Two practices into training camp and Van Dyke has already shown greater awareness on the field. Tuesday, he timed a Carson Palmer pass to Darrius Heyward-Bey perfectly, arriving on Heyward-Bey's back just as the ball did and knocked it away.Keep in mind, the speedy Van Dyke, who ran a 4.25-seconds 40-yard dash at the Combine last year, is getting reps with the No. 1 defense at left cornerback, what with Ron Bartell nursing a strained hamstring. And Van Dyke is not disappointing."Last year, it was kind of crazy," Van Dyke said. "We were locked out and all of a sudden I got a phone call saying I was on the next flight to Oakland. So, it was kind of difficult and I was kind of nervous. Having OTAs this year and the minicamps and having guys like Shawntae Spencer, Ron Bartell and having great coaches, Im just taking everything they tell me and putting it on the field."Im just trying to make plays to help my chances of being a starting cornerback. Thats what Im trying to do."About the only goal Van Dyke failed to reach this offseason was gaining more weight."I tried to aim for 190 (pounds) but I came in at 185," he said. "So Im pretty cool with that."But back to what Van Dyke's mother said. Indeed, he had one interception last year, a third-quarter pick of Kansas City's Matt Cassel late in the third quarter of the Raiders' 28-0 loss to the Chiefs in Oakland on Oct. 23.So with this new scheme, will there be more opportunities for interceptions for the likes of Van Dyke?"Our defense is kind of a blitz defense," he said. "So you've got to be careful and watch where youre looking at and try to get a break on the ball and make plays."Mama agrees.

Oakland stadium authority director doesn't want Raiders in 2019

Oakland stadium authority director doesn't want Raiders in 2019

PHOENIX – The Raiders hope to play the next three years in the Bay Area before moving to Las Vegas. They were approved to relocate on Monday at the NFL owners meetings, but can’t leave right away because Las Vegas doesn’t have a suitable temporary NFL venue.

The Raiders have team options on one-year leases to play at Oakland Coliseum during the 2017 and 2018 seasons, and are expected to do exactly that. Owner Mark Davis said he’s open to negotiating a lease to play the 2019 season there as well before moving into new Vegas digs in 2020.

The Oakland Coliseum authority may not grant that request.

"I would say to you with the highest level of confidence, my opinion and recommendation and that of my board members, I don’t believe there is any appetite for a third season (in Oakland),” director of the Oakland Coliseum joint powers authority Scott McKibben told USA Today.

McKibben said hosting a Raiders game is a financial loss for the JPA.

If the Raiders can’t reach an agreement to play at the Oakland Coliseum in 2019, they have other options in the Bay Area, though none is ideal. They could play at Cal’s Memorial Stadium or use Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara as a last resort in the Bay Area, sources told CSN California reporter Scott Bair.

They could renovate UNLV’s Sam Boyd Stadium – locker room and security upgrades are mandatory – though the Raiders would prefer to avoid that route.

Raiders HC Jack Del Rio believes he could help Aldon Smith

Raiders HC Jack Del Rio believes he could help Aldon Smith

PHOENIX – Raiders edge rusher Aldon Smith has been banished from the NFL for over 16 months now as a repeat offender of the league’s substance abuse policy.

Commissioner Roger Goodell hasn’t ruled on Smith’s reinstatement application and it’s hard to imagine movement coming soon on that front after a pair of recent run-ins with the law.

He was reportedly involved in a domestic incident and was questioned by San Francisco police last month. Then he was a passenger in a vehicle that hit an unmarked police car on March 10, an incident where the driver was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Smith seemed out of sorts when interviewed by media after emerging from a San Francisco police station.

Smith’s banishment states he can’t have contact with Raiders personnel outside the director of player engagement, a stipulation head coach Jack Del Rio has criticized in the past.

He did so again Tuesday at the NFL owners meetings, saying it’s unfortunate the organization can’t support Smith during difficult times.

“It’s a little bit frustrating to not be able to be a part of the process,” Del Rio said. “My feel is that I could help him, but the experts know. The experts don’t allow that. We have to follow the rules.

“It does get frustrating to not be able to help a young man and provide support and provide structure. Somebody else has to make those decisions. It’s just out of my hands.”

The Raiders can’t petition for greater involvement, and are therefore in a wait-and-see mode regarding their troubled, yet talented player.

“He has to get himself together,” general manager Reggie McKenzie said. “(Smith’s status) is totally on the league office. They know more than what we know.”