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Raiders minicamp day 2 wrap: Defensive secondary has field day

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Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

It was a wet day in Alameda for the second day of Raiders mandatory minicamp. The less than ideal weather caused some less than stellar play as well. But practice must go on. Here are my notes.

Sidelined for day two were safety Nate Allen and running back George Atkinson III. As is typically the case, we don't know what the injuries are. Both stood on the sideline for practice.

T.J. Carrie, Sio Moore, and Brice Butler were all limited. Carrie and Butler worked in drills but were sidelined for team sessions. Carrie was noticeably limping on Tuesday but practiced through it. Butler was hurt in practice yesterday and was a no go for teams sessions late in practice.

Sio Moore played a snap here and there in team sessions, but was obviously not near full strength, still recovering from offseason hip surgery. He walked rather stiff and it's actually somewhat surprising he even participated in team sessions. On one particular play, he attempted a tackle on a running back and began walking gingerly and was immediately taken out. He is still expected to be fully back by training camp.

Tuesday it was noted that J'Marcus Webb was taking first team snaps at right guard and Menelik Watson at right tackle. The question was whether that was going to be a one-day thing as they try different combinations or if it was more than that. We may have gotten a better answer for that today as they remained in those roles. For now they appear to be leading the way. It is something we'll continue to keep an eye on.

The one development on the offensive line that I saw was Tony Bergstrom was getting some good work at center. Previously it was mostly just Rodney Hudson with Lamar Mady behind him. Bergstrom worked at center some in training camp last year.

Some of that ‘rust' Derek Carr was talking about on Tuesday was more apparent today. He threw far too many passes to the back shoulder today. On many of those passes, it didn't look intentional. Other times he was simply late, which allowed for passes to be defended. By my count there were five Carr passes which were knocked down by the defender with one intercepted.

Amari Cooper was also not sharp. Whether the weather or just an off day, Cooper dropped a couple passes today, one in the back of the endzone. Carr was also not doing him any favors with regard to putting the ball away from the defender.

Probably the best looking receiver on the day was Kenbrell Thompkins. He made a nice fingertip grab up the right sideline from Christian Ponder. Thompkins had a good day on Tuesday as well and is currently firmly among the top five receivers on the team. Though having Brice Butler sidelined probably ensures that at the moment.

Getting some good work with the first team defense in the absence of T.J. Carrie was Keith McGill. And he was making the most of it, playing quite well. He had a pass defended on a pass from Carr to Cooper today and played well on Tuesday too. You can see the progress and why the coaching staff likes the second year man as their third corner.

Speaking of second year defensive backs, Jonathan Dowling was making plays today as well. He made life difficult for Ponder, beginning with a pass defended and later picked him off and got a decent return out of it.

Neiko Thorpe made Derek Carr pay for a couple of late mistakes as well. On one of his many passes that was behind his receiver deep, Thorpe stayed with Cooper and when Coop tried to high point it, the 6-1 DB broke it up. Then Thorpe finished off practice by intercepting Carr in the endzone on a pass that was too high for Thompkins in the endzone.

Malcolm Smith added a pass defended from Carr intended for Clive Walford. Brandian Ross added an interception on a Matt McGloin pass that was batted in the air by Ras-I Dowling.

Tuesday it was punt fielding, so today it was kick fielding. The unit out there today at kick returner was Latavius Murray, Taiwan Jones, Trindon Holliday, Austin Willis, and Trent Richardson.