As we move into Day Two of Raiders training camp, the intensity is as hot as the turf. Head coach Tom Cable has declared two-a-day practices for the first four days of camp, one in mid-afternoon when the heat simmers off the grass.
"[The players] need to be in the heat and the sun," Cable told the media after Wednesday's endeavors. "I think it hardens you."
In response to interrogations by media personnel about how this sort of intensity is settling in to more veteran players like Zach Miller, who is perhaps more accustomed to the feel of Kiffin's practices, Miller responded, "I think [Cable] brings the right attitude, kind of an old school feel where we’re going to out-work other teams and we’re going to make sure that we grind it out."
Today will be the first time the whole team will practice together since contracts were signed in June. With JaMarcus Russell still the No. 1 pick for starting QB and Darrius Heyward-Bay inking a contract this morning, the offense is solidifying itself and all that needs to be done now is for the guys to learn how to work together.
This shouldn't be terribly difficult considering the amount of veterans on the team. In addition, this is Russell's second year and with his offseason moves of motivating the offense into extra training sessions he is clearly amplifying his voice, not just as a signal caller, but as a team leader.
After the four days are up, the team will suit up in pads and prepare for their Aug. 8 performance at the Coliseum in front of Raider Nation. The spectacle will include Silver and Black jerseys colliding with each other, but at the same time, feeling each other out and learning how to work as a team.
Certainly four days of roughing it will accomplish that.
"They need to go through the struggles of camp and the hard work and the ups-and-downs that come with it and help work each other through it," Cable said.