Head Coach Jack Del Rio
Oakland Raiders Head Coach Jack Del Rio was back at the team's practice facility on Monday, and he addressed the media following Sunday's tightly-contested win. The Raiders skipper acknowledged the team's three-game road win streak, but is already focused on preparing for a big home game this upcoming weekend.
Here are the quick hits from Del Rio's press conference:
**It hasn't been specified how long tight end Lee Smith will miss action, but Del Rio and the coaching staff will game plan without him.
"It'll take several people, in all likelihood, to fill his shoes because of all that he did, mainly the dirty work. Mainly the blocking, the dirty work. Kind of an unsung hero kind of role where he's just very tough, very determined. Yeah, we'll miss him for sure, but like we do, we'll plug in. We'll design around anything we need to design around. We won't ask people to do things they're not capable of doing."
He talked about the enormity of Sunday's win, but is focused on winning at home next week.
"Well it's big to win. You can look at it one way or another, winning the next game is huge. For us right now, we're going to talk about this one because it's up to do today. Then it'll be so important that we win next week or this week coming up. It'll be so huge. That'll become paramount. That'll become the main focus and where we want our attention and effort and everything."
Del Rio praised rookie linebacker Cory James for his production through his first two NFL starts.
"Very productive. We had him for 16 total tackles in the game. I think 12 of them were solo tackles. He finds the ball. I mean, he's around the ball, he played well. He's a good football player. For his second game starting, I thought he showed growth and I think he'll continue to do that."* *
He shared his thoughts on the progression of quarterback Derek Carr and his poise in the 4th quarter.
"I didn't see Derek forcing the action. I saw him taking advantage of opportunities that were there, being deadly accurate with the ball, but most importantly, I saw him to continue to operate with the poise and even keeled. I mean, there's fire there, but it's under control. He's really analyzing what he's getting and getting the ball to a great spot with really good accuracy and letting his playmakers do their thing."
Del Rio commended rookie tackle Vadal Alexander for stepping in and performing at a solid level.
"The biggest thing that has stood out on film is that this guy moves people in the run game. The college tape showed that; a lot of movement and a lot of power with him. We were drawn to that. I think the opportunity to grow him at multiple positions, a guy that can play inside or outside. Once a guy gets here, it's up to him to take advantage of those opportunities and compete. That's what he's done."