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News

Back to Work and Getting Ready for Oxnard

Posted Aug 10, 2014

The Oakland Raiders were back on the practice field for the first time since Friday night's preseason opener. The team breaks camp Monday and heads to Oxnard for joint practices with the Cowboys.

Opening Statement: “It was good to get back out here after playing a game, get a chance to make some corrections, get out and get some more work in. Today was a good situational day – had a little bit of red zone today, had some two-minute there. It was great to see the field goal operation at the end, being able to kick a couple of long field goals to win the game. So, we got better as a football team today, and we’ll have another good practice tomorrow and then we’ll go down to Dallas and get a chance to work with them for a couple of days, so we’re excited about that opportunity.”

Q: Did you do anything specific today to address the penalties?

Coach Allen: “Well, we didn’t do anything specifically in practice, but when we watched tape, we addressed a lot of the issues and that will be something that we’ll continue to work on a daily basis until we can get that stuff cleaned up.”

Q: Are those issues that just happen at the beginning of a year or things that you didn’t think would happen?

Coach Allen: “I think they’re things that certainly, through my experience, I’ve seen them happen in the first preseason game. You don’t like it. It’s not acceptable, but that’s why we play preseason games so we get a chance to work on these things. We get a chance to correct them before we go into a regular season game. It would be a lot more of an issue if that was the opening game of the season, but it’s something that we’ve got to get cleaned up.”

Q: First time you’ve had a joint practice with another team since you’ve been head coach here. What are you hoping to get out of the next couple of days with Dallas?

Coach Allen: “I think getting a lot of great competition. Getting a chance to see some different looks, from a different team, go up against different personnel. I think anytime at this point in training camp, anything you can do to change up the schedule a little bit to get the guys a little bit of energy, I think is a positive. I’m looking for our guys to go down there and compete for two days against a good football team.”

Q: Are you guys working together on what you want to accomplish?

Coach Allen: “Yeah, [Cowboys Head Coach] Jason [Garrett] and I got together and talked about the situations that we want to work and the coordinators are in the process of scripting those things out right now, so it’ll be a lot of situational work that we’ll do down there.”

Q: Saw DJ Hayden working out on the side with the trainers before practice. Is that a sign of progress?

Coach Allen: “Yeah, as far as the timeline, I still don’t really have where I can give you an accurate timeline, but I think it’s encouraging that he was out here on the field and able to do some things on the field. Hopefully the process can begin to speed up, but a lot of that is going to depend on how he responds after a day’s work.”

Q: Even in the best case scenario, things go well and he can practice next week, how difficult would it be to get him ready for the season opener?

Coach Allen: “I think we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. Right now, we’re a little ahead of ourselves. So, I think we’ve just got to monitor his progress and his rehab and then we’ll kind of figure out where we go from there once he’s able to get out here and actually start practicing football.”

Q: How is David Ausberry doing and any idea yet when you might be able to get him back?

Coach Allen: “Yeah, it’s still too early to know exactly when we’ll get him back. He’s in the rehab process. Things went well, but I really don’t have a timeline for him.”

Q: What kind of growth have you seen from Shelby Harris?

Coach Allen: “I’ve seen some good things out of Shelby. I had to get after him a little bit today, but that’s to be expected. I think I saw some good things in the game, a couple of rushes that I thought were really good. I know he beat their starting left tackle for a sack-fumble. I’ve seen some good things from him. He’s still got a long way to go, a lot of progress that he needs to make, really in a short period, but I’m encouraged by the direction he’s headed.”

Q: Austin Howard had his left hand wrapped up …

Coach Allen: “I’m really not aware. I mean he’s got the one hand that he’s had kind of casted up the whole camp, but nothing new that I’m aware of.”

Q: When you got after Shelby Harris today, was that kind of a tone setter for the whole team for today’s practice after Friday’s performance?

Coach Allen: “Just a reminder about the way we want to practice.”

Q: How did Sio Moore and Miles Burris look in the game and how is that battle going?

Coach Allen: “I tell you, it’s still a great, competitive battle. I think both of them did some good things in the game, both of them have a lot of things that they still need to work on, but I really think those guys are competing well against each other and really competing against themselves to try to be the best football player that they can be, and I think both of them have really improved throughout this camp.”

Q: Are you giving Miles reps at inside linebacker as well?

Coach Allen: “Yeah, with Kaluka [Maiava] being down – we got Kaluka back today, but with him being down – we’ve looked at Miles some at the Mike linebacker too.”

Q: You had six sacks the other night and a lot of pressure coming from the interior. How’s the position battle shaping up at the defensive tackle spots?

Coach Allen: “Well, I think the good news is we do have some depth, so that’s encouraging. We’re a big, physical group up front. I think one of the things that we wanted to be able to do, and one of the points of emphasis for us in the offseason, was to be able to improve our four-man rush and be able to get after the quarterback with just our front four. I thought all groups were able to do that in the game the other night.”

Q: Have you ever thought about Marcel Reece at tight end and is that a possibility?

Coach Allen: “Yeah, you know, we use him in that same role a lot. I mean, him and Mychal Rivera really do a lot of the same types of things. There hasn’t been a lot of thought process about putting him as an in-line blocker, alright? But some of the things that we do with him are very similar to what we do with the tight ends.”

Q: Does having a guy like Jamize Olawale give you that flexibility?

Coach Allen: “Yeah, I think both those guys are different style of players and they bring a different element to the football game. I think anytime you have that type of versatility, particularly from the fullback position, I think that’s a positive.”

Q: Is Justin Ellis still going through the concussion protocol?

Coach Allen: “He is, yes.”

Q: What do you think is the biggest area of improvement you need to work on for the upcoming season?

Coach Allen: “We need to win more. I think we’ve addressed a lot of areas and I think we’re a better football team and we need to go out and compete and win some games.”