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Raiders punter airs grievances after apparent Southwest Airlines mix-up

Mon, 26 Jun 2017 16:02:10 UT

You might imagine all professional athletes fly around in private jets, but many of them are suffering through budget airline headaches just like the rest of us.




Derek Carr takes shot at Seahawks with Marshawn Lynch comment

Sat, 24 Jun 2017 17:33:53 UT

The Oakland Raiders starting quarterback, fresh off of a $125 million contract, says he would hand the ball off to Marshawn Lynch if they were on the 1-yard-line.




Plans of the Raiders’ $125 million man, Derek Carr

Sat, 24 Jun 2017 01:31:54 UT

Has Raiders quarterback Derek Carr grasped just how much money that is, after just signing a five-year contract extension that made him the highest-paid player in the NFL. Didn’t want to talk about that, but I’ve been down to Haiti and I’ve seen some of those struggles that they have and the kids there, and my heart just ... [...] just knowing that we can go down there and make a difference and help, those are the kind of things that the money makes me kind of like, ‘Oh my gosh.’ Because now we can really do some things to help a lot of people. Carr is signed through 2022, and on the field, he will help the Raiders try to win a Super Bowl. The organization has spent a long time looking for a face-of-the-franchise quarterback, and realized they had one shortly after adding Carr in the second round of the 2014 draft. There were growing pains, the 0-10 start and a fired head coach, but Carr, 26, has improved every season by combining a love of game film and practice with a very strong arm, competitive nature and natural leadership ability. General manager Reggie McKenzie started off Friday’s news conference and said he was so happy he could do “some jumping jacks and back flips” on the auditorium stage. Teams don’t give $125 million to great human beings, unless they can lead fourth-quarter comebacks (12 in three years), complete 60 percent of their passes and throw for 60 touchdowns the past two seasons. [...] Carr gives the Raiders, 12-4 last year, a real chance to win the Super Bowl. “You can’t pay me a better compliment than to tell me that you trust me with the keys to this thing,” Carr said. Carr, who grew up in Bakersfield and went to college at Fresno State, owned a Raiders jacket as a kid. The deal was structured in a way, with some of the cash backloaded, that helps the team sign other players (Gabe Jackson, Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper, in that order) to contract extensions. “We figured out a way to do it so that we have the opportunity to sign the other guys that I think are important to this organization,” Carr said. Carr had set a deadline of July 28 — the start of training camp — to get the extension done so he could focus on football, but that was obviously unnecessary. McKenzie had been preparing for this salary-cap hit for a couple of years, and Carr doesn’t have much of a poker face. Vic Tafur is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Highest paid NFL players



Derek Carr, Raiders agree to 5-year, $125 million extension

Thu, 22 Jun 2017 23:19:35 UT

Derek Carr said he wanted to be a Raider for life, and took a huge step in that direction Thursday morning by agreeing to the richest contract in NFL history. The quarterback will make an average of $25 million a season after he and the Raiders agreed to a five-year contract extension for $125 million, league sources said. The details of the contract were not known yet, but Carr wanted to make sure that the Raiders would be able to extend players such as guard Gabe Jackson and defensive end Khalil Mack in the near future. Carr, 26, is the only quarterback to throw more than 80 touchdown passes and fewer than 40 interceptions in his first three seasons. Carr was picked for the Pro Bowl for a second time last season, throwing for 3,937 yards and 28 touchdowns with six interceptions before breaking his leg and missing the last regular-season game and the team’s first playoff game in 14 years. Raiders offensive coordinator Todd Downing, who was the team’s quarterbacks coach the past two years before getting promoted, tweeted his congratulations. The former second-round pick out of Fresno State has come a long way since an 0-10 start to his rookie season, when he averaged 5.5 yards per attempt.



Raiders, Derek Carr close in on $25-million-a-year deal

Thu, 22 Jun 2017 02:33:46 UT

The Raiders’ quarterback and the team are finalizing the language of a five-year contract extension that is expected to pay him $25 million a season, league sources said. “Nothing done yet ... trust me you will hear it here first,” Carr tweeted in response to an ESPN report. Carr had set a July 28 deadline — the start of training camp — and Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie was always confident it would get done before that. Carr, 26, was picked for the Pro Bowl for a second time last season, throwing for 3,937 yards and 28 touchdowns with six interceptions before breaking his leg and missing the last regular-season game and the team’s first playoff game in 14 years. Former Raiders and now Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer is next at $24.35 million, Drew Brees takes home an average of $24.25 mil a year, and Washington’s Kirk Cousins has been forced to take $23.94 million because of the franchise tag designation. McKenzie has been planning for this day, as well as extending defensive end Khalil Mack, last year’s NFL Defensive Player of the Year, and guard Gabe Jackson — along with Carr, part of the franchise-changing 2014 draft.



Marshawn's Beast Mode store offering free haircuts to kids making good grades

Mon, 19 Jun 2017 21:12:27 UT

Kids around Oakland who are getting good grades in school have earned themselves a free haircut, thanks to incoming Raiders running back and East Bay local Marshawn Lynch.




Raiders will have plenty of chances to use Cordarrelle Patterson

Fri, 16 Jun 2017 06:30:40 UT

Everyone knew he was fast, but he turned heads this week at the Raiders’ mandatory three-day minicamp at their Alameda facility. With the addition of Patterson, running back Marshawn Lynch and tight end Jared Cook, not improving on last season’s No. 6 offensive ranking would be almost shocking. Pattterson said he could feel the coaches’ excitement when they recruited him, and he signed a two-year deal this spring. The 2013 first-round pick was a Pro Bowl kick returner with the Vikings, with five touchdowns, but didn’t exceed 500 receiving yards in any of his four seasons with Minnesota. Patterson has been a standout at the offseason workouts and was mobbed by teammates after he high-pointed a catch in the back corner of the end zone Wednesday. “He’s a fun tool,” offensive coordinator Todd Downing said. “He works hard,” said Richard, who might return punts with Patterson taking kickoffs. Patterson averaged 31.7 yards on 25 kickoff returns to lead the league last year. “I really believe that we’ve added some weapons with C.P. and Cook, a couple of guys that will be really good players for us,” Del Rio said. Cook, meanwhile, has also made a lot of nice catches against the Raiders’ defense at the minicamp, which concluded Thursday. “There have been a couple of plays in practice where I’m lined up on him and he’ll take off and I’ll be like, ‘Damn, I didn’t know he was that fast,’” safety Karl Joseph said.



Raiders’ Sebastian Janikowski thriving at age 39

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 05:38:36 UT

Raiders’ Sebastian Janikowski thriving at age 39 The 39-year-old Raiders kicker said Wednesday that he plans on kicking off when the Oakland team has packed its weights and opens the 2020 season in Las Vegas. How long does he plan to keep on kicking, anyway? An admittedly much smarter man than he was at 24, Janikowski hits the weight room instead of the bars and started studying game video last year. After 17 years with the Raiders, the 2000 first-round pick has an NFL-record 55 field goals of 50 yards or longer. Seely got Janikowski to start watching himself kick. (He was 3-for-8 from longer distances.) Pretty good, but Janikowski is the highest-paid kicker in the league. “I’m just here so I won’t get fined,” Janikowski said, unable to fight back a smile. Janikowski and the former Seattle running back often can be seen laughing before or after stretching at practice, and Janikowski is as geeked about Lynch’s arrival as Raiders fans are. Last season, the Raiders made the playoffs for the first time in 14 years, and with Lynch’s help, Janikowski thinks they can get through some more teams this season. “We can make the playoffs, but the goal is to win the whole thing,” Janikowski said.



Raiders QB Derek Carr inspired by Warriors’ championship

Wed, 14 Jun 2017 05:36:25 UT

Raiders QB Derek Carr inspired by Warriors’ championship Derek Carr grew up a Lakers fan, but he thoroughly enjoyed watching the Warriors win the NBA title on television Monday night. [...] the Raiders’ quarterback couldn’t help but get lost in thought a little bit. “Just to watch that, it makes you hungry every time you see another team or somebody celebrate a championship,” Carr said after Tuesday’s minicamp session. Just makes you dream those dreams you had as a kid standing on the stage, holding the trophies. Carr did his childhood dreaming in Bakersfield, and he was Kobe Bryant when he was shooting jumpers as a kid. Carr also enjoyed the look he saw in the Warriors’ players eyes, and he thinks it is one that he and his teammates have developed in his three years. To do it with that crowd — the crowd was spectacular last night, full of energy, and a lot of happy people going home last night — it was great to be a part of that. The next step for Del Rio’s team would be to host a playoff game.



Marshawn Lynch's Oakland Raiders jersey is a new top seller

Mon, 12 Jun 2017 20:49:13 UT

Marshawn Lynch's return to the NFL is already going well -- financially, at least. The former Seahawks running back, traded to his hometown Oakland Raiders in April, had the No. 1 selling jersey in May, according to nflshop.com, which released the top 25 bestselling jersey's that month.




Raiders final OTA canceled as team races go-karts

Sun, 11 Jun 2017 03:23:02 UT

Raiders quarterback Derek Carr and his teammates skipped their final organized team activity on Friday, June 9. Instead, Oakland's field general made good on his surname and beat his fellow Raiders in go-kart racing.




Raiders assistants Ken Norton, John Pagano stress communication

Fri, 9 Jun 2017 02:14:24 UT

There is no confusion about who’s calling the shots for the Raiders’ defense. Defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. cleared up things after Tuesday’s offseason workout, minutes before new assistant head coach and former Chargers defensive coordinator John Pagano took his turn at the podium. The Raiders’ defense ranked 26th in the NFL last season. [...] though it did make some big fourth-quarter stops for a 12-4 team, it still finished last in the league in sacks despite having the Defensive Player of the Year in defensive end Khalil Mack. Oakland also had issues keeping receivers in front of its defensive backs. The 38 passing plays of 25 yards or more that it allowed were the most in the league, and defensive backs coach Marcus Robertson was fired. Pagano was with the Chargers for 15 years, the last five as defensive coordinator, and said he will also work with Oakland’s linebackers. Every day we strive for two goals, I know they talk about it in the back end, let’s have great communication, how we’re speaking to one another, and two, let’s not let the ball go over our heads. Norton has been impressed with the Raiders’ first two draft picks this year, cornerback Gareon Conley and safety Obi Melifonwu. Third-round pick Eddie Vanderdoes has had to miss the recent workouts because of UCLA’s academic schedule, but Norton said the defensive tackle will be just fine. “UCLA is the Ivy League of the West,” the fellow Bruin said.



Raiders’ Marshawn Lynch boldly tells it like it is

Wed, 7 Jun 2017 01:42:34 UT

Marshawn Lynch walked up to the podium slowly Tuesday afternoon, spread his legs wide and got low in his best East Oakland stance, and he was ready. Ready to face the press and answer questions for the first time since becoming an Oakland Raider five weeks ago. The former Seahawks running back knew the exact moment he decided he wanted to come out of retirement and play for the Raiders. “Being from Oakland, you always want to play at home and have the opportunity,” Lynch said. Maybe them staying probably wouldn’t have been so big for me to want to come and play, but knowing that they were leaving and that a lot of kids won’t have the opportunity to see most of their idols in their hometown anymore. Every home game that I get to come to, I am probably going to be riding with the whole town, so when you go into something like that ... it ain’t like, ‘I’m coming to your city and I’m going to ride with y’all.’ To have that as a quarterback is big because he’s the last line of defense picking up blitzes, he’s the one fighting for extra yards to move the chains for us. [...] Raiders teammates, fans and Oakland residents aren’t the only ones giddy about the future Hall of Fame running back running for end zone once again. Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie was photographed wearing one of Lynch’s “Beastmode” caps to Game 2 of the NBA Finals on Sunday night.



With speedy tight end, Raiders’ offense adds firepower

Sat, 3 Jun 2017 22:00:00 UT

“He’s an impressive looking human being, isn’t he?” Downing asked rhetorically at the Raiders’ practice facility in Alameda on Tuesday. The Raiders signed the eight-year veteran to a two-year, $10.6 million deal in March with the hopes of bolstering an already formidable attack. Though Cook hasn’t caught more than five touchdown passes in a season during his career, he has a reputation as a reliable receiver. Last season, he was hampered by an ankle injury and mustered only 377 yards for the Packers, the third-lowest total of his career. Cook developed a better rapport with quarterback Aaron Rodgers in the playoffs, posting the highest postseason totals in yards, receptions and touchdowns for a tight end. Against the Cowboys in the divisional round, he led Green Bay with six catches for 103 yards and a touchdown, including a 36-yard grab that set up Mason Crosby’s winning field goal. In Cook, the Raiders believe they have a player who will make life easier for quarterback Derek Carr and the wide receivers. Cook, 30, said his new and old quarterbacks share key traits: football knowledge and passing accuracy. “They know the offense, and that’s really important for a quarterback, especially a young quarterback, to know the moving pieces of what’s going on around you,” Cook said.



Raiders’ Todd Downing earning praise as offensive coordinator

Wed, 31 May 2017 00:14:15 UT

Raiders’ Todd Downing earning praise as offensive coordinator Derek Carr already has a relationship with new Raiders offensive coordinator Todd Downing that the quarterback could not have with the departed Bill Musgrave. A lot of that has to do with their age and personality differences — at 36, Downing is 13 years younger than Musgrave and has more of an outspoken, rah-rah personality like Carr’s. “T.D. has been like a big brother since I’ve met him,” Carr said after Tuesday’s offseason workout. Head coach Jack Del Rio essentially picked Downing, the quarterback coach the past two years, over Musgrave in the offseason. [...] there have been some tweaks to the playbook — a bigger role for the tight end? — though no one is sharing those. “I think I like to just look for matchups and try to exploit those matchups and let guys go win their one-on-one battles,” Downing said. Downing is not going to change too much, because the Raiders did finish sixth in total offense last season and made the playoffs for the first time since Creed dominated the pop charts in 2002. Musgrave, who was fired by Del Rio in Jacksonville in 2005, wound up in Denver as the quarterbacks coach. Downing has not called a play, but will have Carr, a productive receiving corps, Marshawn Lynch and one of the league’s best offensive lines at his disposal. If we can get to that, which I’m confident we will by the time this summer is done and training camp, we should be rolling. Though Carr seemed to audible into a lot of plays at the line of scrimmage under Musgrave last year, he was being held back, according to Derek’s brother, David, the former NFL quarterback and current NFL Network analyst. If his contract extension isn’t completed by the start of training camp July 28, Carr — who stressed that he’s “not worried” about the progress of talks — said he will play out the final season of his original four-year deal.