There has been no shortage of intensity during the joint practice sessions between the Las Vegas Raiders and Los Angeles Rams.
Unfortunately, tempers began to flare and ultimately boiled over during the special teams portion of practice. This spurred head coach Jon Gruden to put an end to the practice session and call it a day.
It was a bitter end to an otherwise productive day for both teams. Gruden made it clear that he no longer has the patience to deal with non-football activities during practice, via Kevin Patra of NFL.com:
“I thought we had great work today until special teams, right at the end of the special teams period,” Gruden said. “I have no idea what that was, but that’s enough of that crap. That’s not good for football, that’s not good for anything, that’s the end of that practice session.”
Gruden doubled down on his disappointment with the fighting that went on.
“There’s no message. They know. They know better,” he said. “Everybody knows better. And again, it wasn’t everybody fighting. It’ll be on TV. You’ll see a bunch of guys screaming and yelling. But it was two guys in a special teams period, and then it was a lot of trash-talking that escalated. It’s just sickening, really. It’s just stupidity. I’m done with that. It’s just child’s play to me.”
Even if the practice was shut down before it was supposed to be, it is encouraging to see that both sides were happy with the looks they were getting up to that point. Although fights at this point in the offseason are inevitable, it is evident that Gruden would much rather maintain the focus on getting quality reps while they still can.
Quarterback Derek Carr shared some high praise for the offense when it came to making big plays. Even if it is a practice setting, these are encouraging strides that this group has made going into the 2021 NFL season.
Wide receiver Hunter Renfrow has seemingly drawn the most buzz with his efforts against the league’s premier shutdown cornerback in Jalen Ramsey. Carr credited Renfrow with making notable improvements to his overall game and trusts him as a go-to option moving forward.
Of course, the biggest challenge will be making it translate to the real game once the 2021 NFL season begins. The Raiders will be wrapping up their sage with the Rams in Week 2 of the preseason at SoFi Stadium.
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