The Oakland Raiders returned to the practice field after their scheduled day off on Tuesday, yet were still without some key pieces.
Backup running back Roy Helu, Jr. remained out once again with an undisclosed injury of his own.
As has become par, head coach Jack Del Rio didn’t go into specifics about when they may return to the team.
Without anything else, here are some quick hits from Wednesday’s padded practice:
- A tough day for cornerback D.J. Hayden who once again found himself on the losing end of a battle against veteran wide receiver Michael Crabtree. The team finished on a team drill where Derek Carr continuously attacked Hayden by throwing it to Crabtree. The drive ended with Crabtree beating the corner on an out-pattern to haul in the touchdown in front of Hayden. Hayden did read a play nicely towards the middle of the drive, attempting to undercut the route but was unable to haul in the interception.
- On the same drive, Carr found Crabtree on a deep pass through the middle of the field. That said, the play was likely void since second-year linebacker Khalil Mack broke free in the backfield for a simulated sack. Mack has continued to impress with added technique in the pass-rush.
- I didn’t know much about linebacker Josh Shirley heading into today’s practice, but he impressed today. Shirley completely tossed tight end Gabe Holmes to the side during a blocking drill, then got into the backfield for a simulated sack shortly after. He’s got a lot of work today, but if he caught my eye, he likely caught the attention of some of the coaching staff.
- Running back Latavius Murray had another nice practice, using some fancy footwork to break free on a nice run after the primary hole appeared clogged up. He continues to look like a back that can start for the Raiders.
The Raiders have a quick turnaround as they hit the field tomorrow morning.