CB Sterling Moore. Photo by Tony Gonzales.
News and notes from Napa: CBs Chimdi Chekwa and Joe Porter, and OL Bruce Campbell returned to the practice field after missing time due to injury.
The Raiders returned to the field for their 12th official practice of training camp and the first since falling to the Cardinals 24-18 in the preseason opener on Thursday at O.co Coliseum. The team was fired up and ready to learn from their game-time mistakes.
During the postgame press conference on Thursday, Head Coach Hue Jackson was determined to have the team understand their faults and fix them. "I'm really looking forward to practice on Saturday because we have some things that we can totally clean up," said Coach Jackson. "When you make a statement and you tell them certain things can happen in a game to you, it really comes to light when it really happens. Obviously, the issue is with penalties, the issue is with explosive plays, and with scoring in the scoring zone was, in my opinion, the difference in the game. That's why we play these preseason games and we're going to come back next week and practice and get some of these things corrected."
Sticking to his word, Coach Jackson focused on the problems he observed during the game and when watching film on Friday. The players studied film in order to fix their mistakes, but also observed what they did well.
"Actually I was excited to see it on film with the short amount of time that guys have had to practice, three or four days, but if you look at it on tape guys were going pretty much in the right area," said QB Jason Campbell. "That's hard to do after just a couple days of practice, but I was glad to see that."
Although the Raiders fell to the Cardinals, the players were encouraged by the strides they've made since the start of Training Camp 2011. "I think it was a good start," said CB Stanford Routt. "It was the two week anniversary from when we started camp so I think for being two weeks it was a good start and good way to get the rust off."
CB Sterling Moore made two big plays in the preseason opener, but knows there is still a lot of growth that needs to be done. "Personally, I made some plays, but at the same time I had some mistakes," said Moore. "I think that's everybody. I need to learn from what I did wrong and just grow on the plays that I did make."
Moore felt the same way for the team as a whole. "I think as a team we did some good things, but at the same time, there are things we need to learn from," said Moore. "I think that's any preseason game so there are things we need to build on and there are some things we did really well. You have to get in your playbook a lot more now. When you go out there, if you don't know it, you can't play fast. That's the big thing – knowing what you're going to do before you go out there that way you can just react instead of having to think on the field. "
Coach Jackson was impressed with the young cornerback out of Southern Methodist University. "He competes, he's tough and he's not afraid," said Coach Jackson. "I know he wants to be in the game and he's always pushing to get in. That's good and he's a tough, competitive guy. He didn't play a ton the other night, but I think the guy should get a chance to see what he can do."
Moore has demonstrated his desire to play and prove himself. "You really have to go out there and assert yourself," said Moore. "You don't want to come out here and get passed over by anybody. I definitely want to let him know that I'm there and I want to get in the game."
The rookies are not the only ones trying to make the most of practice and the preseason. LB Quentin Groves played a number of series on Thursday for the Raiders. "I played a lot more because I needed the work," said Groves. "Coach Jackson told me going into the game that we were going to get a lot more work because people fail to realize that this is only my second year playing linebacker. I was a defensive end in college and went to Jacksonville and played defensive end there so it's my second year really playing stand up linebacker, reading keys and things of that nature. Got the work in, had a great time."
Although the end result on Thursday was not what the Raiders had hoped for, they got back to work today to straighten out their miscues. They will continue to put in the effort to improve and get ready for their next game.
The team will return to the practice field on Sunday afternoon. Log on to Raiders.com, Facebook, and Twitter for complete coverage.