Saturday, April 30, 2005

Moss gives Oakland a Thumbs-up

Associated Press, from ESPN.com
Randy Moss stopped briefly to answer to coach Norv Turner.

"How was it?" the Oakland Raiders coach asked his new star receiver after the team's first minicamp practice Friday.

Moss just smiled and gave the thumbs up sign as he walked off the field, his long braids swinging and shining in the California sunshine.

Acquired last month in a trade with the Minnesota Vikings, Moss looked sharp in a short practice Friday in his new No. 18 uniform and oversized gray shorts.

With no defenders on the field, he caught a 15-yard out from quarterback Kerry Collins, tiptoeing the right sideline before going out of bounds. Moss and fellow receiver Jerry Porter, re-signed to a five-year deal in February, squatted together on the field and motioned with their hands to diagram plays.

"It was cool," Porter said on his way to the locker room.

The Raiders didn't make any veteran players available to reporters, opting to formally introduce their new draft picks instead.

"The organization wanted to present its rookies," senior administrator Artie Gigantino said, "because during draft day we didn't have them in and we had mini-camp right after the draft. Why bring them in twice? That's always been the policy."

Four-time Pro Bowl cornerback Charles Woodson, whom the Raiders are still seeking to trade, practiced and socialized with teammates all while spitting sunflower seeds.

Woodson is the Raiders' franchise player for the second straight season and he signed a $10.5 million tender in February -- a 20 percent raise over last year's salary of nearly $8.8 million. So far, the Raiders haven't found a team willing to give Woodson the lucrative long-term contract he wants.

Woodson spent Friday's session providing advice to two rookie cornerbacks, first-round pick Fabian Washington out of Nebraska and second-rounder Stanford Routt from Houston.

Washington, who ran a 4.29 40-yard dash at the scouting combine in Indianapolis, wasn't ready to call himself the fastest player on the Raiders just yet.

"I don't know if I'm the fastest guy on this squad," he said. "Randy Moss is on this squad. That's a pretty fast guy."

Moss' arrival was minus the fanfare surrounding him last month for his introductory news conference. He showed up at team headquarters that day in a stretch limousine escorted by seven police officers on motorcycles.

Then Moss was greeted by fans and the franchise's three Super Bowl trophies.

1 comment:

Vaughn R Perkins said...

With the offseason acquisitions of Randy Moss,Lamont Jordon and an improved defense,hoefully going back to the 4-3 scheme,I'm looking for a much improved Raiders team this upcoming season.Wish we had another QB but since we don't,it's my hope that Collins knows which colored jerseys to throw the ball to.Hopefully our OL will be able to provide adaquate protection enough for him to get the ball to either Moss or Porter,as no team will be able to contain them both.We especially don't want Collins to have to run,as he possesses little or no running skills.The passing game will need to be successful in order for Jordon and the running game to prosper.In his second season as the coach and with added offensive weapons,I look for Norv T. to be able to the Raiders in contention for the divisional title this season.