Linebackers huddle up during Saturday's mini-camp practice. Photo by Tony Gonzales.
Oakland Raiders draft picks, undrafted free agents and eligible first year players hit the field Saturday at the team's Alameda, Calif., facility for the second day of a three-day mini-camp. The sounds of whistles, air horns and coaches barking instructions are all stark indicators that football season is on the horizon.
Head Coach Dennis Allen spoke to assembled reporters in the media workroom and expressed his excitement for the start of the on field work for the Silver and Black. "It feels good to be able to get back out on the field and start working football again," Coach Allen said. "This is the time you recognize that football season is coming on us quick. I think these rookies have done a real good job coming out here the last couple of days and they're very eager to learn and try to get better, and do anything they can to help this team win."
Thanks to some Draft weekend maneuvering, the Raiders came away with 10 selections in the 2013 NFL Draft and signed 14 undrafted free agents in the hours after the Draft. This mini-camp is the first opportunity for the Raiders coaching staff to work with these players.
A handful of Raiders players who have participated in previous NFL training camps, or have been on an NFL team's active, inactive or reserve list for fewer than six games are also participating in this mini-camp which concludes Sunday with a single practice.
Nine of the 10 Draft choices spoke to the media after Saturday's practice.
Rookies and veterans will take the field together for the first time when Organized Team Activities begin Monday, May 20.