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Safe bets and current guesses: Oakland's first week

After the practices started using pads, the Raiders had a chance to see what full-contact NFL playing and hitting felt like. Anyone who tells you that training camp isn't anything to worry about, hasn't had the chance to experience it first-hand. Players are fighting for careers, putting everything they have into a game, so that either they stay with the team that invited them, or they can interest another team into opening a roster spot for them to stay in the loop.

For the Raiders, the draft provided some decent selections, and those that are playing, are already producing fruit. Rolando McClain is shocking, performing almost like a veteran. With the Raiders, it looks like the team has a three star talent waiting, to either attack the run, intercept a pass or rush the passer. Lamarr Houston, who has been steady in learning the position, got to experience life in the front line as Richard Seymour slid over and let the rookie play at end. Will this last into the regular season? Maybe...I can't wait for Dallas.

Jared Veldheer, who came in as an offensive tackle, has been seen taking duties on the second string as a Center....something not normally seen, but does prove the rookie has talents to give him extra standing power for the Raiders.

The two fourth round picks, Jacoby Ford and Bruce Campbell, are both projects but Jacoby seems to be seeing more activity. As a WR, he's showing signs of being ready to help in the here and now, in light of the injury to Johnathan Holland. Likewise, Bruce, who has been seen in the second team, is learning as he's a matter of time before he starts to make a presense on the Raiders' first team line.

Tomorrow, we'll look as some guesses, including free agents, and what the division has to offer for a challenge.


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