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Early overview of Raiders training camp

Photo courtesy of Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Raiders training camp officially kicked off last Saturday at their Napa, California training complex. Monday they took the field with it being their first padded practice of camp. The Raiders brought aboard 22 new player through free-agency this offseason, so the complexity of the roster certainly looks different from what it did just one year ago.

Derek Carr connecting early with Tyrell Willams

The Raiders front office revamped the skill positions during free-agency, and Tyrell Willams was a big part of upgrading the offense to play alongside Antonio Brown. It will take time for Carr and Williams to find their groove, as they still don’t have much experience working with one another. However, the two of them spent additional time training together during the NFL’s dead period in order to get a head start on training camp.

Since training camp started, the two have been clicking on all cylinders. Williams has flashed his straight-line speed throughout camp on a regular basis. His counterpart, ‘Antonio Brown’ has seen limited action, but should be back in the coming days as a full participant. With Brown just seeing limited work, Williams has really showed what he can bring to the table, having a nice camp early on.

Kolton Miller is much sturdier then he was in his rookie campaign

Last season Kolton Miller got off to a quick start during the first couple weeks of his rookie campaign. Although, shortly after that, he suffered a knee injury that caused him trouble moving forward. He didn’t miss a game from the injury, but his production on the field scuffled once the knee problem occurred.

Now, after a healthy offseason, Miller has told reporters that he’s gained some weight over the summer and feels great. That’s very positive for Miller, because he’s a big part of what the Raiders want to do moving forward, and getting back to full health is largely significant. His biggest concern was his strength, which so far appears that he’s really looked sharp throughout camp with the added on weight.

Jonathan Abram is a true old-school safety

The Raiders took Jonathan Abram with the No.27th overall pick, hoping to maximize his potential and get the Raiders turned in the right direction. Abram was known at Mississippi State as an aggressive hitter, who can lay the wood on opposing receivers and running backs. Well, so far in training camp, he’s been everything he was talked up to be.

Jon Gruden has raved about the kid on and off the field. Teammates have even gone as far to say, “He doesn’t carry himself like a rookie.” During practice last Sunday, he recorded his first interception, as he cut off a pass over the middle of the field. Granted, he still hasn’t seen live action in an NFL game just yet, but his potential looks promising for the Raiders future. Abram is a guy to keep an eye on heading into the 2019 season, as it appears he’ll be a key figure to the Raiders new-look defense moving forward.

Trent Brown has dominated the line of scrimmage

Last season Derek Carr was sacked a career high 51 times. His protection on dropbacks were nearly non-existent, and Gruden knew that had to be a focal point heading into either free-agency or the draft. Gruden wasted no time, as he signed Trent Brown to the largest offensive lineman contract in NFL history.

Brown, a former seventh-round pick now calls himself, “The greatest underdog”. He’s the biggest lineman in the NFL, listed at 6’8″ 380-pounds. With that said, he’s put all that 380-pounds to the test, as he’s been pancaking the defensive lineman in practice. It appears the Raiders have found their right tackle for the current and the future.

 

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