Raiders OTA Observations: Marshawn Increases Activity, Remains Limited

ALAMEDA – Running back Marshawn Lynch practiced a bit more during the second week of Raiders OTAs than the first, but was still limited in his offseason work.

Lynch wore a helmet in a Tuesday OTA session open to the press, and participated in individual drills, some run-specific work and install periods, but wasn't part of team periods in a practice without pads. Lynch frequently joined the first-team's huddle, but watched those plays from a distance.

The Raiders are easing him back to action after a year away from NFL football, and aren't concerned by limited participation during the offseason program. He has been around every day, and coaches have praised his work ethic since the Oakland native joined his hometown team.

"He has showed that it's important to him to integrate himself into the scheme and into the locker room," offensive coordinator Todd Downing said. "It's been nice to have him around. He did a little more today. We're excited about where he's at. What we've seen from him so far has been outstanding."

Here are some other observations and notes from Tuesday's OTA session:

-- First-round cornerback Gareon Conley moved up the ranks some in the second week of OTAs. He was the first-team slot cornerback – TJ Carrie occupied that spot last week – and played inside and out with the second unit. He looked comfortable and covered No. 3 receiver Seth Roberts well on the inside.

Conley worked with the second and third units last week.

-- Offensive coordinator Todd Downing praised tight end Jared Cook's blocking skills, and said versatility within the position group will allow him to be unpredictable while using multiple tight end sets.

-- Marshall Newhouse continues to sit in pole position at right tackle, taking all first-team reps at that spot.

-- Offensive linemen Austin Howard and Jon Feliciano and defensive tackle Darius Latham did not participate in Tuesday's OTA session.

-- Undrafted rookie linebacker Nicholas Morrow returned to the team after missing last week's OTAs while Greenville College completed its academic year. Third-round defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes remains out with UCLA still in session. 

-- Linebacker Jelani Jenkins participated in team drills Tuesday after being relegated to side work during the last open OTA session. Ben Heeney's activity increased a bit, as the middle linebacker worked in individual drills this time around.

Cory James and Tyrell Adams remained the first-team inside linebackers.

-- The Raiders offense was out of sync on Tuesday, with several receiver drops and poor passes. Even starting quarterback Derek Carr threw a pick six to David Amerson in team drills generally dominate by defense.

"There was a bit of a Memorial Day hangover, no doubt," Downing said. "We need to iron out a couple things, but I like the effort. I think the attention to detail will come with everybody getting re-acclimated to OTAs and not on a holiday weekend. Overall, I was pleased with their attention and effort."

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