Oakland Raiders' Dennis Allen: 'I like this football team'http://www.insidebayarea.com/breaking-news/ci_23454125/oakland-raiders-dennis-allen-i-like-this-football
By Steve Corkran firstname.lastname@example.org
ALAMEDA — The Raiders concluded their three-day mini camp Thursday with coach Dennis Allen pleased with what he sees from an overhauled roster.
"I know there's a lot of experts out there that might think differently," Allen said, "but I like this football team."
Allen no doubt is referring to the myriad stories written about the Raiders being a work-in-progress and far from ready to contend for a Super Bowl title.
Yet, most of the players that Allen is going to take with him into the regular season on the 53-man roster were here the past three days, as well as most of the offseason.
Allen and his coaching staff won't see the players on the field again until the Raiders convene in Napa for training camp in late July.
"I like this football team," Allen said, presumably for emphasis. "I like the players on this team and I'm excited to see what they can do once they get into training camp."
The Raiders finished 4-12 last season. During the offseason, general manager Reggie McKenzie jettisoned numerous veteran players and made little or no attempt to sign some of his own high-profile free agents.
In turn, McKenzie relied upon the NFL draft and lower-profile free agents to fill out his roster this year.
So far, so good, Allen said.
"I've been pleased with the work that these guys have put in and, obviously, we're not the finished product. We've still got a lot of improvement to do, but I wouldn't say that's any different than any of the other 31 teams. But I like their mentality, and I like the way that they work."