The Raiders began phase three of their offseason program this week, which meant offense and defense working against each other in 11- on-11 situations.
No, there are no pads or tackling allowed, but it’s about as close to football as you’re going to get this time of year.
And Raiders fans are clearly thankful.
Here is a sampling of what arrived in this week’s mailbag:
MrBlockbuster17 (@MrBlockbuster64): Why wasn’t Josh McDaniels up front with the Jimmy Garoppolo injury/surgery?
Vincent Bonsignore: With complete appreciation for how that might be frustrating to fans, the reality is this is standard procedure in these cases. Absent an official injury report for a game, it’s almost universal that coaches and teams are going to be completely guarded about injuries and medical procedures. They are under no obligation to disclose any specifics, and reasonable people can probably understand why.
There are valid reasons. What if the player requested that information remain private? Sometimes, there are HIPAA rules in place that preclude a team from disclosing medical information.
So it’s not cut and dried that the coach or team is being purposely evasive.
That said, there are times when they are. Because, frankly, there are no rules, especially at this time of the offseason, that stipulate teams must divulge medical information about their players,
G (@GCraps7112020): Whether rumor, speculation or fact, what’s the latest on Josh Jacobs? Something, anything is better than nothing.
VB: Well, based on the roster the Raiders released, he is now wearing No. 8, which was his number at Alabama.
Aside from that, everything about his contract situation remains status quo. Jacobs has not yet signed his franchise tag tender and is therefore not attending the Raiders’ voluntary offseason program activities. There is a mandatory minicamp coming in June, so it will be interesting to see if he attends.
Storm (@Storm2817): Is the mood inside the building and around the league as pessimistic on this upcoming year for the Raiders as the fan base?
VB: No disrespect to the fans, but most players and coaches will tell you that the minute they start looking at things and thinking about things as a fan does is one minute closer to them sitting with the fans in the stands during the game rather than participating in games.
All kidding aside, imagine being a highly confident professional athlete with goals that they are well compensated to pursue, only to report to work every day to mope around with a defeatist, pessimistic attitude.
How long do you think anyone with that mindset would last at this level? And why would you think someone so competitively wired would even approach their job in that manner?
No matter how dire a situation may appear to outsiders, this time of year is about hope and optimism and laying a foundation for what everyone involved believes will be a successful season.
It guarantees them nothing. And they have an uphill climb ahead of them to compete in a highly competitive division and conference.
But by all accounts, there is great excitement and optimism about meeting that challenge head-on.
Regardless of where any of the chips may eventually fall.
BringNDaRuckus (@chris4aces): So Davante Adams and Maxx Crosby have earned the right to vent. Has Josh Jacobs?
Contact Vincent Bonsignore at [email protected] Follow @VinnyBonsignore on Twitter.