Running Back Marshawn Lynch
After four weeks, the Oakland Raiders have checked out of their Napa Valley Training Complex.
Just a little under a month after pre-camp began, the Silver and Black officially wrapped up Training Camp 2017 Thursday afternoon after an abbreviated morning session.
"We're ready to wrap it up and head back to the Bay," said Head Coach Jack Del Rio. "It was a very productive time up here in Napa, so we're really appreciative of our organization, and the efforts they make for us to have a really good camp. It's an excellent setup. Everything went really well."
And on the final day, in addition to Head Coach Del Rio, running back Marshawn Lynch spoke on the heels of wrapping up his first training camp as a Raider.
"It feels pretty good to go through camp and put another under my belt," said Lynch who came out of retirement in April to join the Silver and Black.
Although he didn't play in the team's preseason opener against the Arizona Cardinals, Lynch has been a full participant in camp, and after a year away from the NFL, he said he's pleased with how his body has responded since strapping the pads back on.
"My body is feeling pretty good, considering I was off for that time," Lynch explained. "It's straight."
Lynch last played in the NFL for the Seattle Seahawks in 2015 where he appeared in seven games, but now playing for his hometown team, the hope is that No. 24 can return to the form that made him one of the most feared running backs in the game.
So what's been the hardest adjustment for Lynch since returning to professional football?
"To be honest, I would say just getting my mentality back to waking up early and getting it going and doing something physical, in order to get my body back to its playing ability," he said. "That was the hardest thing for me because I'm not a morning person. After that was over, it was straight."'
Saturday's game against the Los Angeles Rams – which kicks of at 7:00 p.m. PT by the way – will not only be the Raiders first preseason tilt at home in 2017, it will also be Lynch's first home game in front of his hometown crowd.
And for a man as deeply engrained into the fabric of Oakland as Lynch is, you better believe it'll be special for him to run out of the player's tunnel for the first time.
"It's truly a blessing and just to have the opportunity to go and do that is a good [expletive] feeling," the always colorful Lynch said. "It's a good [expletive] feeling."
Head Coach Del Rio added, "We're looking forward to playing at home this week in front of our crowd. I'm excited about that opportunity to kick that off."
-As I said above, Thursday's on-field session was shorter than usual, as the final day wrapped up about an hour earlier than usual.
-We all know that quarterback Derek Carr is one heck of a quarterback, but he showed Thursday he has a little skill as a receiver too. Before practice, "DC" was warming up with the other quarterback, and after Offensive Coordinator Todd Downing tipped an incoming pass, Carr kicked the ball up to himself, then snagged it in the corner of the end zone.
-During the stretching periods of the day, linebacker Bruce Irvin and defensive end Khalil Mack typically play catch with Assistant Special Teams Coach Tracy Smith. Today, defensive lineman Denico Autry also got in the mix, showing off his arm as well.
-Here's something you don't see every day; during one of the team's seven-on-seven sessions, a pass intended for tight end Gabe Holmes bounced off his chest, was then tipped in the air by a defender, at which point it was snagged by running back Elijah Hood who ran forward for a nice gain.
-Running back John Crockett also made quite the impressive snag Thursday, hauling in a one-handed catch during one of the Raiders seven-on-seven sessions.
-Quarterback Connor Cook had a nice, final day of Training Camp 2017, finding wide receiver Keon Hatcher for a touchdown during one of the last periods of the day.
-Thursday's practice did indeed end early, but not before a little, friendly competition. To officially wrap up training camp, Head Coach Del Rio held a punt-catching competition. Offensive lineman Jon Feliciano represented the offense, catching his punt on the first attempt, as did long snapper Andrew East who represented the special teams units. Defensive tackle Justin "Jelly" Ellis was the last go, but unfortunately for him and the defense, the big man had a hard time fielding his three attempts.
Song Of The Day:
"We Outchea" – Ace Hood Feat. Lil Wayne
Appropriate track, since the Silver and Black are now officially out of Napa.
Tweet Of The Day: