clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Obi Melifonwu sees more team reps, other notes from second week of Raiders OTA’s

New, comments
NFL: Oakland Raiders-OTA Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Tuesday the Raiders took the field to begin their second week of OTA practices. With that the media was back to witness it, myself included. So, let’s get to it.

  • Three of the team’s top four receivers did not take the field with their teammates. Amari Cooper, Jordy Nelson, and Seth Roberts did not participate in practice. No reason was given, though we know Amari Cooper was dealing with a hamstring issue.
  • It was a day without Nelsons. Along with Jordy, Reggie and Nick were also not on the field.
  • Khalil Mack is still not participating in OTA’s as he has yet to receive a contract extension. There is no indication a deal will get done anytime soon.
  • Eddie Vanderdoes was out as well, recovering from a torn ACL he suffered in the 2017 season finale.
  • Martavis Bryant was the only of the team’s top four receivers who participated. He is the newest receiver, having been acquired in a draft day trade, so he could use the work catching up with the others.
  • In their absence, we saw a lot of last year’s camp standouts Keon Hatcher, Isaac Whitney, and Johnny Holton. Whitney in particular had a nice diving catch over the middle. Ryan Swizer worked out of the slot and definitely looked the part with crisp routes, good hands, and lateral quickness.
  • We got our first look at newly acquired QB Christian Hackenberg. He certainly looks the part, both in stature and physical abilities. He had a bit of a rough day, including throwing an interception. Rashaan Melvin jumped a throw for the right sideline, picked off the ball and ran it back for a touchdown. This was Hackenberg’s third practice with the Raiders, so some difficulty is expected.
  • Connor Cook also threw an interception on a deep, high arching pass that was picked off by safety Erik Harris.
  • Doug Martin looked good. Very quick. Though as Offensive Coordinator Greg Olson pointed out, it’s hard to really tell much about how a running back will perform in the regular season in shorts with no tackling allowed. Maurice Jones-Drew is a perfect example of that.
  • Donald Penn is still the first team left tackle in walk-thrus. But he is still not completely back from his foot surgery, so, in his absence, rookie Kolton Miller has been lining up with the first team at left tackle in team sessions. At one point Bruce Irvin got the edge on Miller for a sack.
  • Last year’s fourth round tackle, David Sharpe was working primarily at left guard with the second team. With the two drafted tackles, the team is looking to see whether he has the ability to move inside as a utility reserve as they did with Vadal Alexander and Denver Kirkland.
  • As suspected, newly signed offensive lineman Cameron Hunt is playing center. He is the third team center behind Rodney Hudson and Jon Feliciano.
  • Mario Edwards Jr was back at practice. He didn’t participate in team session in the first OTA. He was the first team defensive tackle next to Justin Ellis.
  • Third year former undrafted pass rusher James Cowser has been working as an off the ball linebacker behind middle linebackers Derrick Johnson and Marquel Lee.
  • Obi Melifonwu saw more time on the field this week than he did in the first OTA. Last week he was on the sideline nearly the entire time, only getting on the field late for some instruction. Tuesday he came in with the third team at safety. It would appear the message Gruden sent him after the first OTA was received.