Josh Jacobs took the handoff from Derek Carr and found a seam up the middle to get to the second level. Once he was a few yards downfield, here comes Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey, flying over to rip Jacobs’s helmet off. Raiders tight end Foster Moreau was right there to get in Ramsey’s face and defend his teammate. Ramsey continues jawing with Moreau until several other Rams and Raiders players converge to break it up.
Ramsey had been physical since the first time he lined up against Raiders players in one-on-ones, clearly seeing the scrimmage a bit differently than most of the other players on the field.
Don’t get it twisted, though, that dust-up was the first of several scraps in practice today, the first of two scrimmage practices with the Rams at their Thousand Oaks facility. That wasn’t even nearly the worst of them.
There were a couple on special teams, including one that formed a pile on the field as a couple of players rolled around on the ground and the two teams converged.
It seemed like the pushing and shoving occurred just about every play, though it usually didn’t amount to much more than that. It’s clear some of these guys were itching to see some action against another team after just practicing against their teammates for months.
“It’s all fun,” said Maxx Crosby. “This is when you can get your punches out, the preseason. You get away with a little bit extra. You know, tempers get flaring and it is what it is. It’s the first day going against somebody else, so things like that happen sometimes.”
It wasn’t just relegated to the players either. The coaches were on another level too, led by Jon Gruden who could be heard yelling and cursing even more than usual.
“I feel like everybody was [extra juiced],” said Crosby of Gruden and the coaches. “At one point (laughs), it was during the special teams, and there was like seven, eight coaches screaming at one time and I was like ‘everybody just relax’, But it’s all good. That’s just how it is. You get this intrasquad thing going and people are just yelling for no reason.”
While Gruden may have had cause for some choice words for the offense, the defensive coaches shouldn’t have had much to yell about. At least not in a negative way. The defense was on point, picking off passes left and right.
Tre’von Moehrig had an interception on Matt Stafford on the second play of team sessions. Then Rasul Douglas picked him off as well. Later Cory Littleton got into the act, picking off Stafford as well. There were a couple of passes that were nearly picked off as well.
The Raiders’ offense wasn’t free from turnovers. Marcus Mariota threw an interception to LB Robert Rochel.
All in all, it was the kind of scrimmage you might expect with starters facing an opposing team for the first time in like eight months combined with young hopefuls trying to fight their way onto a roster and up the depth chart.
And we have one more day of this. Should be fun.