The Oakland Raiders’ first day of mandatory minicamps were overshadowed by the announcement that the team will be featured on HBO’s Hard Knocks, but that doesn’t mean that there wasn’t anything noteworthy to come from the practice. Those who were in attendance noted how hot it was.
The heat wave didn’t stop Antonio Brown and a couple other offensive players from showing off their skills. Hunter Renfrow and Darren Waller were amongst those players.
Practice only lasted a couple hours so there weren’t too many highlights to come out. Rookie safety Johnathan Abram was seen taking first-team reps alongside Karl Joseph. This is notable because Abram is quickly moving up the depth chart. Abram is an exciting prospect and he’s getting a lot of opportunities to prove himself early on.
Team owner Mark Davis was seen hanging out at the practice. He was chatting it up with some players on the sideline.
Davis must be excited about all the new talent general manager Mike Mayock brought in this offseason. With a move to Vegas looming, this last offseason in Oakland is already a memorable one and is about to get even more entertaining with HBO on the way.
Other noteworthy news is that the Raiders may hold a joint practice with the Los Angeles Rams before their first preseason game. Jon Gruden and Sean McVay have a previous relationship so it makes sense for them to share the field for a practice.
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In his talk with the media before practice, Gruden mentioned that there may be a few absences for the beginning of minicamp and now that the first day of practice is over with, we have a better idea of who’s out. Cornerback Gareon Conley was absent for Tuesday’s practice. He was seen working out in the weight room alone, so he’s probably just nursing a minor injury.
New linebacker Brandon Marshall has continued to be kept off the practice field. He didn’t practice during OTAs and it seems like he won’t be taking the practice during minicamps either. There hasn’t been any word of exactly what’s going on with him, but the team is probably keeping him out for precautionary reasons. Marshall figures to be a big part of the Raiders defense in 2019.
Offensive guard Denzelle Good was also nowhere to be seen. Good was supposed to start at left guard before the Raiders brought on Richie Incognito, but he figures to be a back up for 2019. Also absent for undisclosed reasons were offensive guard Denver Kirkland, cornerback Isaiah Johnson and some other minor players. Johnson also missed time during OTAs, so it’s a situation to monitor.
The first day of minicamp was a success for the Raiders. Expect to hear more from wide receiver Tyrell Williams and some of the rookies like Clelin Ferrell and Josh Jacobs as the minicamp roles on. This is the last time the team will all be on the field together until training camp in late July.