Twenty-four days after the first Raiders touched down at the team's Napa Valley Training Complex, the team is going going, back back, to Alameda.
The Silver and Black were originally scheduled to hold their final on-field session of training camp Thursday morning, but Head Coach Jon Gruden ultimately cancelled it prior to the team getting to work.
Since the team arrived in the North Bay a little over three weeks ago, the work has been feverish for Coach Gruden, Derek Carr, and the rest of the Raiders.
With a completely rebuilt and retooled roster, there were not a lack of questions surrounding Gruden's squad as they descended upon Napa, and although there are some questions that still remain, we have a much better sense for this team than we did a month ago, particularly as far as effort and preparation are concerned.
"I'd just like to say that I was really happy with today's practice," said Coach Gruden following Wednesday's practice. "Normally the last real practice at training camp, a lot of people get a little bit distracted. What we did is we went out and really challenged our guys with short yardage, goal-line backed up, two minute, no huddle. Desperation field goals. Covered a lot of ground. Our guys did a nice job. We got our team rejuvenated physically a little bit after two, long, padded practices for the upcoming game."
Speaking of that game, following Thursday's "off day," the Silver and Black will regroup Friday for a morning walk thru before flying to Los Angeles in advance of Saturday afternoon's preseason game, a game that will be an interesting matchup for myriad reasons, including the fact that the two teams open the regular season against one another on the night of September 10.
Coach Gruden said he had never seen a scheduling wrinkle like playing a team in the preseason before opening the regular season against that very team, but nevertheless, the 60-minute showcase at the Los Angeles Coliseum would still be critical in roster evaluation.
"It's a preseason game and we have a lot of really tough evaluations to get through before we start thinking about what play we're going to call," Coach Gruden explained. "We're going to really continue to use this as an evaluation, period. You're going to see a lot of players playing a long period of time that are going to get a chance to show us they belong here. That's how we're looking at this game."
Kickoff against the Rams is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.
Take a look through the top images from the Raiders' 16-10 win over the Lions in Preseason Week 1 at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.