Brown speaks on Saints BountyGate

547606.jpg

Brown speaks on Saints BountyGate

Tim Brown chuckled a bit. The former Raiders receiver and three-time Hall of Fame finalist was asked his opinion of the Bounty controversy surrounding the New Orleans Saints."My answer," Brown said after stifling his laugh, "may surprise you a little bit because, I don't want to say that it's part of the game but I think it was sort of done a different way back in the day. If you got a guy out the game, that was a big deal."Maybe (the Saints) just took it too far."Brown, in town for the Raiders' Commitment to Excellence Award dinner at the Oakland Airport Hilton honoring recipient Rock Cartwright, spoke of the sport's nature in explaining his feelings."Football is a dirty, hard game," he said. "I mean, it's a hard game; it shouldn't be a dirty game. And if they can show any plays that were dirty, illegal (by the Saints), then I think (critics) got a point. But if somebody hits somebody a little harder, it's still football.NEWS: Another contract restructured -- Curry the latest
"Look, there were times where I made deals with guys on the field -- 'Look, brother, if you want to save your knees, you better not take my head off when I come across the middle.' Some guys went for it, some guys didn't Rodney Harrison never went for itthat's just how the game was played."Brown also spoke of such plays that went down in his playing days."It's like what the Denver Broncos did to Chester McGlockton when they ruined his career here -- they took him out and it was dirty," Brown said. "There wasn't anything legal about what they were doing. It was illegal playsthey broke his ankle. They were diving on the back of his ankle."That kind of stuff, and what we cried about back then is, that needs to be punished. And they did, they got 50,000 fine. So what. The team probably paid it, Chester didn't play the next week, they came back here for a the playoff game, we still beat them but they didn't have to deal with Big Boy that week."You show me some dirty plays that New Orleans has and I'll tell you how bad they should be punished."So how fine is that line between being dirty and just playing hard?"That line is a lot thicker than you think," Brown said. "You can tell very quickly who is being dirty, and who is playing hard. Rodney Harrison was not a dirty player. He was just a dog. He was a dog, and you knew if he got his hands on you he was going to slam you to the ground. That's not dirty, that's part of the game. There's nothing illegal about thatit is now. You can't slam now. Rodney would have been out the league a long time ago if he played now."Brown said, though, that former longtime Kansas City cornerback Dale Carter was in the other category."He'd say, 'I almost got you,' like he was trying to take you knees out," Brown claimed.

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.”