The Oakland Raiders took the field in Napa, Calif. for their fourth padded practice in five days but players remained disciplined and stayed away from fighting each other as we had seen on Saturday.
Both OL Kelechi Osemele and DL Mario Edwards, Jr. were ejected from Saturday's practice after two skirmishes between the two players. You can read more about that here.
The Raiders also saw a return of many players that were injured on Saturday, including TE Colton Underwood, RB Taiwan Jones and DL Leon Orr.
Here are some quick observations from Sunday's practice:
- Third-round rookie Shilique Calhoun has continued to impress me all offseason and it has only continued into training camp. The linebackers took on the tight ends in a blocking drill today and the young pass rusher abused four tight ends in a row -- he beat Gabe Holmes on the outside first, then got inside on Mychal Rivera with a spin move next. He finished up the drill by knocking Ryan O'Malley on his back with a bull rush. He displayed all the pass-rushing moves in the drill and looks like he may be a valuable piece to the defense, especially if Aldon Smith is gone.
- As comfortable as Calhoun is in pass-rushing, he still needs some work dropping back into coverage, something he was rarely asked to do at Michigan State. Second-year tight end Clive Walford beat him easily on an underneath route and Calhoun was left trailing. He's certainly athletic enough to develop the skills though.
- Second-year wide receiver Amari Cooper went up high to make a spectacular catch over cornerback David Amerson, drawing the "oohs" and "ahs" from the crowd in attendance. A couple of plays later Michael Crabtree made a nice one-handed catch with Sean Smith trailing. The receiving combo looks like their chemistry is building with quarterback Derek Carr.
- Wide receiver Seth Roberts took a quick pass at the line of scrimmage and juked safety Nate Allen to turn it into a big gain. Roberts continues to prove a valuable third receiver that has the quickness to make a big play at anytime.
- Rookie defensive lineman Jihad Ward came away with sack in the end zone to tally a safety on Carr and the starting offense. It seems the Raiders have found another key defensive piece that adds depth to their line.
The Raiders have another off day on Monday, and then return to the practice field on Tuesday at 11am.