Raiders training camp outlook: Defensive tackles


One story in a series, looking at position breakdowns for the Oakland Raiders, who arrive for training camp in Napa, CA, on July 24. Today – a look at defensive tackle:

Much of their work goes unnoticed but the presence of the Oakland Raiders defensive tackles remain critical to the team's success.

The addition of John Parrella and Sam Adams were huge reasons why Oakland's run defense made a quantum leap from being among the NFL's worst to near the league's best at stopping the run.

Oakland released Adams, who has since signed with Buffalo, in a salary cap move but the addition of Dana Stubblefield from San Francisco should at least adequately offset that loss. Stubblefield, who was once a premier player at his position, has seen his performance slip in recent years but should benefit from the Raiders depth at tackle.

Parrella may not put up the most astonishing numbers but his passion and work ethic set the pace for Oakland's defensive line. Parrella plays a vital role in consuming double-teams coupled with his nonstop intensity.

Rod Coleman is the third man in the tackle rotation and led all interior linemen in sacks with 11. Coleman is often viewed as an undersized lineman. While his quickness causes plenty of problems for offensive linemen, he also has the strength at 285 to present matchup problems.

Chris Cooper is a versatile player capable of playing end or tackle. Cooper is a high-energy player but has been a little more successful as an end. Junior Ioane, a fourth-round pick in 2000, only played in six games last season but showed more promise after two mostly underwhelming seasons.

As for the suspended Darrell Russell, Oakland head coach Bill Callahan stated earlier this offseason that he has closed the door on his return to the team.

Vince D'Adamo can be reached at

SB Report Top Stories