I think the thing that is most important is, we've improved our team, and we filled a lot of needs, and I think that's how you would categorize this draft, is a need-filled draft for the Oakland Raiders.
Where do you go from here with JaMarcus Russell?
Well, I think this. We really never got into any of that. What it comes down to is, we've got five quarterbacks now, and we're going to have a great competition. There will be some decisions to be made here in the next month or so, and we'll just leave it at that until we get through some of those decisions. But right now, we felt like adding Jason [Campbell] to this football team was very important. He's a guy in need of a fresh start, if you will, himself. He's proven he can do some things and have some success in the NFL, and I think we're all familiar enough with Jason to know we're getting a guy who has proven he can play in the NFL. So, we have five quarterbacks, we'll have great competition, and we'll have some decisions to make here pretty soon.
Bruce Campbell was a guy some people thought could go in the first round, even to you guys. Were you surprised he was still there in the fourth round, and what do you project him…
He's a numbers guy. Extraordinary numbers, really, when you get down to it for an offensive lineman. But we liked him, and we got him right where we thought he fit. So again, the feeling in the room was that the draft kept coming to us, and when he was there, it was pretty much a no-brainer. It gave us some more depth, gave us more competition at offensive line, and it's a good pick.
When did you first start talking to the Redskins about the Campbell trade and how quickly did it come together?
You know, we worked on it a little bit, and once we were able to kind of see where we were it and what we needed to do to take this team to where we wanted to go, then it became obvious. You know, let's get to work on trying to improve it, and the quarterback talk came about, and once that happened we moved quickly.
Is there anyway JaMarcus Russell could emerge from this as the starter this year?
Well, sure there is. If he competes for the job and he's doing all those things that your starting quarterback is supposed to do, if he's the best guy, then yeah.
How does Jason Campbell differentiate himself from the guys you already have, other than just his experience?
You know, probably, you're looking at a little bit more height, more arm than a couple guys, pretty good athlete, can run around like a couple of guys. So he may have a little bit of everyone in him, to be quite honest with you. I don't think you'd categorized him like you would JaMarcus, or Charlie, or Bruce, Kyle. They're all kind of different in their own way, and I suppose Jason's got a little bit of everyone in him.
Could you have come out of this with anything more than you got? Were there any disappointments in the draft at all?
Yeah, I mean, I thought there was another move to get in there that didn't come our way, but very pleased. But you know you can always do better. I'm sure after we have some time to reflect on it, we'll look at it and say man, I wish we could've done that or that. But shoot, man. That's a heck of a draft for the Raiders, it really is.
Does Jacoby Ford immediately become your frontrunner to return punts and kickoffs, and how is his route running and his hands? How close is he to being a good NFL receiver?
Well, there's some work that needs to be done. I don't think he's any different than a lot of guys coming out of college. But I'm looking for that guy to see if he'll take the reigns of our return game and become a guy like that for us. And I think those are the expectations early on as we get ready to have mini camp next week and get ready for OTA's after that. But there's certainly a role for that on this football team and we picked him with that in mind. He's obviously a very fast guy, and he shared return duties with CJ Spiller, which is a pretty tough guy to share them with. But prior to CJ getting all the returns, he was the guy in high school and prep school, and then early at Clemson, and he's really about as phenomenal as CJ Spiller was. So we just felt like we have to do it, got to have it because we need to change the game in the return game. We're very good at covering kicks here, but we've not been very good in the return game and hopefully he can add to that.
On Bruce Campbell…
We're going to put him there at right guard and right tackle, let him go to work, let's get him started there, and then we'll see what else he could do after that.
Who called whom in regards to the Campbell situation?
We were contacted by a lot of people, first of all. But that was just one of the many phone calls, and so you listen to some, some you don't. That one, happened to listen to.
On the later round picks…
Goethel excites me for the fact that he's a true inside linebacker that's a tough downhill player. Just as importantly, I think he's going to enhance our special teams. I think that gives us a real quality guy there.
Ware, I liked him at corner. I think he's a guy that's extremely good playing the gunner on special teams. Was a jammer on the punt return team, but he can play man coverage.
McFadden, probably to us, he was the one we were really geeked about. We thought he was going to go earlier, and he was there for us, and we think he definitely can come in and help this football team right away.
Ford, we talked about the kick return ability. But I would think Goethel, McFadden, Ware, Brown. All those guys there can have a real role on this football team.
They talk about Bruce Campbell as being real raw in his technique and not always consistent. When you look at the film of him, what specifically does he need to get better at as an offensive lineman?
I think the consistency in how he plays the game fundamentally. He is raw. You know, you've got this giant piece of clay to do develop here, and it's a good piece to work with. There's some things fundamentally that he will improve on very quickly because of the athleticism. At this level, he's going to have to figure it out pretty quickly because of the competition. Probably the biggest thing that I see for Bruce is that he's going to have to understand that at this level, it's such a demanding thing everyday in your live as an offensive lineman. How you take care of your body, how you train, all those. He's going to be great at that because he already looks like a monster the way he is. The looks, the build, the whole thing. But mentally, how you prepare, and how hard you work everyday, how hard you have to play every time the ball gets snapped. I think it will be the first hurdle he has to get over, and once he does that, I think this guy is going to be something.
How could you compare the way you guys feel today versus the way you felt at the end of last year's draft?
We are very excited right now because we're going to walk out of the building today and we're going to say the Raiders got better today. We improved, and it's not just, you know, trying to be positive and all that's stuff. It's real. You can see it, it's there, it's not just us saying it. I think it's everyone that knows this game and know the draft. We walk out of this place a better football team. So we'll go to mini camp, and we'll go to work. It's time to build that football team now.
Cable's Day Three Draft Presser
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