‘We have the best facility I have ever seen in my life'
Silver & Black Illustrated|September 2020
‘We have the best facility I have ever seen in my life'
Raiders head coach Jon Gruden had his hands full as the team went through its first training camp in Las Vegas. Because of the pandemic, it has been unlike any other training camp Gruden has been a part of and it’s forced the entire coaching staff to be creative and innovative in how they approach things. Gruden talked about some of that and various other topics when he met with reporters throughout the early part of camp.

Q: Is the vibe different in this facility being out in Las Vegas and in a new facility?

A: There’s a different vibe. This is a great facility. Certainly, it’s exciting to have the best you could ever could ask for from a facility standpoint. I think the vibe is different because we have a unique cast. We got some good guys here. We have some really promising young players and we have the right kind of guys leading them from a veteran standpoint. That’s probably what I’m most excited about right now.

Q: What is having a healthy Jonathan Abram going to do for the team this year?

A: I don’t want to make any predictions. But we didn’t draft him in the first round for any other reason. We think he can be an outstanding player. He has to stay healthy. He has to prove he can do it. I think he can. Getting him back with (Nick) Kwiatkoski and Littleton, the addition of Damarious Randall and Jeff Heath gives us more depth and versatility in the middle of our defense, which we need. I’ll go back to Maliek Collins, it all starts there. He’ll be the anchor of us. We’ll go as far as he takes us.

Q: What has been your impression of Bryan Edwards?

A: Pretty good. He was a great receiver at South Carolina. Some of my favorite players I’ve coached come from there. Sterling Sharpe, Robert Brooks, Alshon Jeffrey, Sidney Rice. We knew he had the pedigree, he’s the all-time leading receiver at that place. But he’s physical, he’s got tremendous hands, he’s a quick learner. He’s a business man too. He’s not got a lot of other interests other than being a great receiver. He’s a really focused young man. We’re happy to have him.

Q: UNLV was supposed to play college games at Allegiant Stadium this fall and those games have been postponed. Has that shaken your confidence at all that the NFL will play games this fall?

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September 2020