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Training Camp Notebook 8/9: 'Competition breeds excellence' for Raiders heading into joint practices

After two rest days, the Las Vegas Raiders returned to the indoor practice field Wednesday, running through drills in shorts and shells. The intensity will ramp back up Thursday when the San Francisco 49ers come to HQ for the first of two joint practices between the teams.

Notes and Observations from Day 11:


  • Jimmy Garoppolo really hit his stride Wednesday, connecting often with Davante Adams and Hunter Renfrow throughout practice.
  • Keelan Cole Sr. made a dynamic catch on the sideline during 1-on-1 drills. He played in 14 games (three starts) in his debut season with the Raiders in 2022.
  • Second-year wideout DJ Turner saw an uptick in reps. The gadget receiver played nine games for the Raiders last season.
  • Brandon Parker saw his fair share of snaps, as he's engaged in a healthy competition at right tackle with Jermaine Eluemunor and Thayer Munford Jr.. Parker started 13 games for the Silver and Black in 2021, but didn't see action last year after suffering a season-ending injury in the Hall of Fame exhibition against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
  • "Jermaine Eluemunor played really great last year. Thayer played really great as well, so in order for me to even be in the mix, I have to step my game up because they both have evolved in the following year," said Parker. "Every time I see them do it right, I'm trying to get it right up there with them because competition breeds excellence. It doesn't do anything but help us all if everyone else is getting better."


  • Many younger guys saw the majority of snaps on the defensive line Wednesday, including Nesta Jade Silvera, Adam Plant and third-round pick Byron Young, who had a nice batted down pass in 11-on-11 team period.
  • Neil Farrell Jr. returned to practice from the Non-Football Injury list.
  • Jordan Willis had an underrated showing at practice, in my opinion. The defensive lineman is gearing up for joint practices against a 49ers team he played for during the last three seasons.
  • The overall defense looked stout in red zone drills. Rookie linebacker Amari Burney continues to excel in coverage, making a nice play on the ball to force third down.
  • In the secondary, Sam Webb is settling in and has clearly looked more comfortable on the field throughout this year's camp. "It's a lot easier, comes a lot more second hand," Webb said of Patrick Graham's defensive scheme. "It's great right now coming in knowing the play style that we're looking for."

Special Teams

  • Daniel Carlson and AJ Cole both tried out a wide array of kicks on kickoff and punt return drills, putting their precise ball placement on showcase. With the new kickoff rules in effect, it seems they're both trying to get ahead of the curve.
  • While the majority of returns reps went to DeAndre Carter and Ameer Abdullah, cornerback Nate Hobbs continued to have some flashes in his limited reps on punt return. It will be interesting to see if he gets the opportunity to try it out in a preseason game.

Quote of the Day

“I just take it one day at a time. The more snaps and reps I get [with] game experience, your confidence grows within the defense. Just knowing my assignment and [doing] what I’m supposed to be doing at all times.” Tyler Hall

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The Las Vegas Raiders hosted local non-profit organizations to enjoy practice at 2023 Training Camp at Intermountain Health Performance Center.

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