One of the big knocks on Oakland Raiders' rookie Joe Barksdale is his lack of fire. So when I heard he got in a fight Sunday at training camp, I did a celebratory dance in my living room. One way or another the Raiders are going to beat that fire into him, and—at least according to Barksdale—that is exactly what happened. Barksdale:
"It happens, man. That was actually self defense. I didn’t start that, if you were watching. But it happens, it’s unfortunate. We are teammates and, at the end of the day, we’re still cool. It gets hot. Things happen."
Surprisingly the man on the other end of the exchange was not Lamarr Houston. It was Tommie Hill. Adding to my hope that Barksdale is learning what it takes to succeed in the NFL he, Stefen Wisniewski, and Jared Veldheer stayed after practice for extra reps with the elder Wisniewski, offensive line coach Steve.
As for Stefen, he spent most of the day working with the first team at left guard. It is starting to sound like Stefen may be this team's starting left guard. Here is Hue Jackson after practice:
"I’m just trying to, again, just keep finding the right pieces, as you continue to watch the tape each and every night and see what’s gonna’ be our best fit for him. Because he’s a very tremendous player. We drafted the right guy. He has all the qualities that we were looking for. He’s everything that I thought he would be, and he’s gotta’ be up there somewhere. So, if it’s not at center, obviously, he has the capability of playing guard."
- Stevie Brown rolled his ankle. Hopefully it doesn't keep him off of the field for long. With Hiram Eugene's injury the Raiders are now thin at FS, and Stevie is in the mix to get a lot of snaps, as Michael Huff very well may be this team's starting nickel corner.
- Chaz Schilens has not been seen since his knee injury. Needless to say, since this is Schilens we are talking about, this is cause for concern.
- Desmond Bryant practiced with a large cast on his hand. I don't think I am going out on a limb when I say something is probably broken under that cast.
Bruce Campbell and Chimdi Chekwa have both resumed practicing.
Offensive Line Notes
- Jared Veldheer and Khalif Barnes swapped sides for a few snaps. My best guess is that this was done to get Barnes some reps at left tackle as he may be this team's backup there as Barksdale and/or the injured Stephon Heyer may be unseating him as the starting right tackle.
Denarius Moore continues to look spectacular, and it sounds like he is getting increasingly comfortable returning punts.
- Stanford Routt is looking better and better as training camp progresses. Meanwhile DVD got plenty of much needed reps as Chris Johnson had a day off.