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5 observations from Raiders' final week of OTAs

The Las Vegas Raiders are in their last week of Organized Team Activities (OTAs) with the start of mandatory minicamp next week.

A lot of new and familiar faces have showcased their skills over the last three weeks, with "an amazing vibe" taking over the building, according to Malcolm Koonce. The main goal, as always, is for the locker room to get a solid foundation in practice as the offseason moves forward.

Here are a few notes and quotes on the Raiders' last open practice of OTAs.

  • Overall, it was the offense's time to shine Tuesday. Both Gardner Minshew II and Aidan O'Connell stepped up to make some big throws to a variety of receivers. The two headliners of the day were Jakobi Meyers and DJ Turner. The receiving duo caught two touchdowns apiece during red zone 7-on-7 drills, including a highlight reel toe drag in the back of the end zone for Turner.
  • Another receiver who stood out to me was Tre Tucker. He looks even faster going into Year 2, which is saying something considering NFL Next Gen Stats labeled him as the second most athletic receiver at the 2023 NFL Combine.
  • The position group that excelled throughout the day was the tight ends. Michael Mayer caught two touchdowns in the middle of the end zone during red zone drills, with Cole Fotheringham also making some big catches. First-round pick Brock Bowers continued to make plays in space, a trait he was synonymous with at Georgia.
  • On the defensive side of the ball, Christian Wilkins was everything as advertised. His get off at the line of scrimmage is something to marvel at and noticeably assists the edge rushers next to him. "That dude is running so fast every single play," Gardner Minshew II said of Wilkins. "Wherever the ball is, you'll see him soon. He shows up. It's really impressive to be around a guy that nonstop works the way he does."
  • A young cornerback that saw a lot of reps was Jakorian Bennett. The 2023 fourth-round pick started four games last season with potential to take a leap in his sophomore campaign. "He has a way higher understanding of the defense, of Coach [Patrick] Graham and how he calls it and of the game," cornerbacks coach Ricky Manning said. "It's a little bit slowed down for him now, so now he can really work on that development. He can really get better at the things he needs to focus on, and he's doing that. He's continuing to work."

Head inside Intermountain Health Performance Center to view photos from day eight of OTAs.

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