Can you hear that sound? Can you feel the breeze? The autumn winds are getting ready to start blustering as football is around the corner already. The Raiders report to training camp on July 25th and begin practicing the next day on the 26th so get ready to finally have your fix again.
It is a mighty quick turnaround from that first practice on the 26th to the first preseason game in Dallas on August 9th. There will be no time to putz around once training camp comes and that also means taking this current time off seriously as well. Despite having this time off the players must make sure to be studying their playbooks and keeping themselves in shape for the head banging that is barely over 2 weeks away.
One player talking the talk right now is a member of the 3 man QB competition that will be in play this preseason, and it isn't one of the two QB's that were on an NFL roster last year. Tyler Wilson is again showing to be a quick learner taking the step from college to the NFL in stride, and despite needing to really show up huge to have a shot at starting he continues to progress in significant ways.
"You understand that it is important that you continue to maintain your body and everything that goes into the season," Wilson said. "That way when you get into training camp here in the next couple week you are ready to go and it's a lot different than college because you step into training camp and you've got a preseason game the next week. The season is right around the corner and I'm excited."
It is really great to hear a young rookie like Tyler Wilson saying the right things such as understanding the need to maintain his physique during this time off. It is easy to fall back into a vacation mode when you are away from the team for as long of a time as this wait is so understanding that you can't let that happen is an important thing to learn early in an NFL career. As long as Tyler backs up his words with the proper actions it appears the young QB has already learned that pivotal lesson.
There is no doubt that the world of the NFL is an entirely different beast than the world of the NCAA, because of that it is important to treat it differently as well. Wilson might not have realized it coming in but his eyes have been opened and he is enjoying his experience, though he also acknowledges that it is nice to be back home for a little bit.
"It's been an eye opener experience playing in a new system and a new environment but it's been awesome," Wilson said. "I've enjoyed the challenge and everything that's gone through it. It's good to be back home and get a little bit of a break but continue to work on some things before we get into summer workouts."
Tyler has an uphill battle to win the starting job in Oakland as a rookie. Dennis Allen is not the type of coach to rush rookies into playing time, just ask Tony Bergstrom about it if you need an example. Allen has expressed his faith openly that Matt Flynn is the starter until he sees something otherwise to change his mind. Wilson is chipping away at that "something otherwise" bit by bit though so Flynn needs to show up big when the preseason starts in just 30 days.