Photo by Tony Gonzales
The Raiders took the field for their 18th official practice of Training Camp 2011 in Napa, Calif. The practice was a little different on Tuesday as the team scrimmaged 11 on 11 almost as soon as they took the field. Wearing pads, the players worked hard to improve and get ready for Sunday's match up with the New Orleans Saints at O.co Coliseum.
"I know there is a very good football team coming in here and I know there is a good football team here that needs to play," said Head Coach Hue Jackson. "We need to come to play and we need to go and improve. Again, this is about improvement. That was the biggest disappointment last week. I didn't think last week we took a step forward and sometimes you have to go backwards before you go forward again. So I am very comfortable with where we were after watching the tape and talking to our players."
The team is focused on righting their mistakes from Saturday's game, while also learning about their upcoming opponent. "We need to continue to grow into what we are trying to accomplish and what we are trying to do," said Coach Jackson. "There are goals that we want to accomplish in every game that we play. There is a huge, huge football game here this Sunday night on T.V. against a very good football team and it is going to be a heck of a test for our football team."
Both the offense and defense have specific goals Sunday evening with the main objective being a win. "[I want to] continue to get better with my team and come out on top with a victory," said WR Denarius Moore.
Rookie DE Mason Brodine is looking forward to the opportunity to prove himself to his teammates and the coaches. "I hope to have an opportunity to show the team what I can do, and hopefully make some plays," said Brodine. "We need to stop the run on defense and that will give us the opportunity to rush the passer a little bit. As a D-lineman I have to love that."
The players are using this practice time to put Saturday's loss behind them and look forward to the third preseason game. "Practice has been pretty upbeat and the tempo has been good so I'm excited for Sunday," said Brodine.
Over the last few days, the Raiders have been watching film, studying their mistakes, and correcting them on and off the field. All of the hard work is helping translate into improvements come game time. "We've been going over the game plan, what we need to do for Sunday," said Moore. "But, we came in first and corrected mistakes from last game to get better with that first as we continue to build."
The Raiders have two more practices at their Napa Valley Training Complex before returning to Raiders Headquarters in Alameda. Log on to Raiders.com, Facebook, and Twitter for complete coverage as training camp winds down.