Team Report....

Angry Pope

All Raider
Feb 2, 2006
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Raiders Team Report


Steve Corkran

PERSONNEL ANALYSIS: The Raiders have not received any serious offers from teams about the prospect of trading for disgruntled WR Jerry Porter, though his agent was given permission to pursue a trade five months ago. Porter is unhappy with coach Art Shell about a face-to-face meeting that ended with Shell berating Porter and kicking him out of his office, and at offensive coordinator Tom Walsh because Porter favored the Raiders hiring the offensive-minded Mike Martz before they decided upon Shell, who later hired Walsh. Second-year player Kirk Morrison has supplanted veteran Danny Clark at the middle linebacker spot--for now, at least. Morrison's speed, youthfulness and consistent playmaking prompted the Raiders to move him from the outside to Clark's spot, which, in turn, freed up room for rookie second-round pick Thomas Howard to play on the outside. Clark still has a decent shot at winning a starting spot at one of the three positions based on his solid play the previous two seasons. Morrison cracked the starting lineup early in his rookie season and developed into a dependable player right away.

NEWCOMER REPORT: Howard is getting a long look at earning the starting weakside linebacker spot. He has wowed Raider coaches from the outset with his speed, explosiveness and ability to create havoc in the backfield when he blitzes. He still has a long ways to go in terms of grasping Oakland's defense and acclimating to the NFL, but he appears better suited to the position than those who played there in recent seasons. The Raiders expect Howard to make mistakes as he matures into his role, which his why they threw Thomas into the mix right away--so he has as much time as possible to develop into a player capable of playing full time.

PROBLEM SPOT: The Raiders entered camp with an offensive line that featured four projected starters who either weren't with the team last season or played a different position. That led to a lot of uncertainty over how long the revamped line would need to jell. Progress was slowed by LT Robert Gallery's starting camp on the physically unable to perform list. However, all are up to speed now and making a seemingly seamless transition. Of course, the real proof figures to come in exhibition games and once the regular season starts. But the early signs are encouraging for the Raiders in that Gallery looks comfortable at left tackle after spending his first two NFL seasons at right tackle, Barry Sims has adjusted well to left guard after spending most of the past seven seasons at left tackle, rookie Paul McQuistan plays with the confidence of a veteran and Langston Walker has settled back into right tackle after a year attempting to convert to left guard.
I know we almost traded Porter on draft day.

Wish we had more news on Grove.

Howard, Morrison, and Sam Williams...that sounds nice.
Angry Pope said:
Howard, Morrison, and Sam Williams...that sounds nice.
I'm excited about Sam Williams. I remember the year before last at the end of the seaon the guy looked like a stud. He just has to stay healthy and get some reps.
CrossBones said:
I'm excited about Sam Williams. I remember the year before last at the end of the seaon the guy looked like a stud. He just has to stay healthy and get some reps.

Me too. Have you seen this dude's camp photo's? Holly shit, what a Monster. I love the athletic potential of Howard, Morrison and Williams.
Shit, the LB's could end up being one of our strengths instead of a liability. Been a long time.
A Looooooooooooong time. At our best over the past decade we've always had one liability.
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