Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

October 29, 2009
Russell showing accountability? and other Thursday notes

JaMarcus Russell is apparently changing his tune. Four days after deflecting criticism for his poor play that led to him being pulled in the second quarter of Sunday's 38-0 embarrassment, the Raiders quarterback told reporters Thursday, "You know, there was mistakes out there."

Russell continued: "Everybody saw that. Good or bad, take that in stride and learn from it, no matter what it is, and...you go back and put the small things into details, you know, you can just learn from the mistakes..."

Showing some accountability is one way to win fans back. Performing better on the field is the surefire way to do it.

Russell also acknowledged that he has been leaning on third-string quarterback Charlie Frye. But Russell took exception to anyone questioning his attending the Golden State Warriors' season opener Wednesday night at Oracle Arena.

"What I do in my personal life is not really what's going on here," Russell said. "So now you're trying to tell me I can't go enjoy my life. Going to a basketball game... I want to go see those guys play, hey, that was just something in my off time I wanted to do. I don't think that was bad."

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Greg Ellis has been in the NFL since 1998, so naturally, the defensive end is playing special attention to the league's seeming rising awareness of head injuries.

"Yeah, it's something that has to be taken seriously, and in most cases, it needs to get to the level where they are protecting us, the players, against our own selves," Ellis told reporters. "Since we started playing football as a little kid, you're taught toughness, toughness, toughness. Some of us, if we can walk, we say, 'OK, I'm good, I'm fine.'

"My wife is getting on me all the time, 'How you feeling, Greg?' Well, I'm fine. 'No, you're not fine. Why are you doing this? There's something wrong.' But it's just a conditioned thing. So, unfortunately, when it's something that's not going to be long-term, OK, it's fine. But if it's something where you're talking about a head problem, then it needs to be supervised by somebody better than the players."

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Those that did not practice - WR Nick Miller (shin), WR Chaz Schilens (foot), RB Darren McFadden (knee), QB Bruce Gradkowski (ill), Cornell Green (calf), LB Ricky Brown (ankle) and DE Greg Ellis (knee). Ellis is the only one of the aforementioned who should play Sunday at San Diego.

Meanwhile, LG Robert Gallery (fibula) and TE Tony Stewart (chest) practiced limited.

WR Louis Murphy (hip) and CB Chris Johnson (groin) did not finish practice.

"We'll see," Cable said when asked if Murphy was a troubling problem. "Again, been sore but it got worse as we got into practice, so we stopped him."

More than a week after the Raiders trumpeted Schilens' return from his Aug. 18 broken left foot, Cable acknowledged having doubt about the wideout's availability this weekend.

"I am right now," he said. "Yep."

McFadden, however, has started a slow rehab from his knee surgery.

"He's running on a lessened load," Cable said of McFadden. "He's starting to jog, do all those things, so we should really get back to work next week with him, it looks like."

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About Raiders Blog and Q&A

Matt Kawahara was born in Sacramento and attended McClatchy High School and UC Berkeley, where he wrote for the independent student paper The Daily Californian. He graduated from Cal in 2010 and started at The Sacramento Bee as a summer intern. He joined The Bee's sports staff in fall 2011.

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