NAPA, Calif. -- A daily review of the hot topics coming out of Oakland Raiders training camp:
Middle linebacker Ben Heeney, who tweaked his left ankle in a downfield collision while covering tight end Mychal Rivera in Monday's fully-padded practice, was dressed for the shorts-and-helmets workout to close camp on Tuesday. Heeney only participated in the individual drills and walk-through, though, as rookie Cory James got the reps at the MIKE linebacker spot in 11-on-11 team drills. Hard to imagine the Raiders risking playing Heeney on Thursday.
Sean Smith picked off Derek Carr in the end zone on a jump ball to Michael Crabtree and then proceeded to highstep it 105 yards the other way for what I'm sure he considered a massive pick-six. Alas ...
Yes, you could tell this was the last practice in Napa 30 minutes before practice started. The moving trucks were on site, players were shooting a basketball around -- Khalil Mack threw down a nasty monster jam and rookie quarterback Connor Cook had a sweet outside stroke -- and classic hip-hop was on the sound system. Afrika Bambaataa's "Planet Rock," anyone? The hoops were getting a little serious until coach Jack Del Rio strolled over. "Boys, boys," he yelled. "You can shoot, but no games." Makes sense. Don't need any rolled ankles, right?
The offense had to do at least two sets of "up-downs" after the second- and third-team units fumbled snaps to QBs Matt McGloin and Cook.
After 13 practices and nearly four weeks together in Napa, how will the atmosphere change at the Raiders' facility in Alameda? "When we're in the meeting rooms and all of that, there's always a good energy," Carr said. "Coach Del Rio is playing music and you can always hear (defensive coordinator) Kenny Norton, Jr., yelling from the QB room all the way across the hall. The energy is always there. Obviously, we're not staying the night in the same rooms as each other. We're not around each other 24/7, but that's what camp and the offseason was for. To build that camaraderie; build all those things up. That's really the only thing that you're missing out on because you don't get 24 hours together, you just get a few. I'd say that that's probably the only thing that changes because the energy, the tempo of practice, how hard we work, all that stuff will stay the same."
And will Carr miss his unlikely roommate of the past near four weeks, receiver Amari Cooper? "Coop can come to the house any day he wants," Carr said with a laugh. "We have an extra bedroom. He can come stay with us. Yeah, he can come stay whenever he wants. That's always an invite."
The Raiders played host to residents of the Aegis assisted living home and the Napa High School football team while a contingent of alumni, including Hall of Famer cornerback Willie Brown, visited the Veterans Home of California in nearby Yountville.
The Raiders are off Wednesday as they travel to play their second exhibition game on Thursday at the Green Bay Packers.