ALAMEDA – The Raiders offseason program is now complete. Head coach Jack Del Rio considered this two-month period productive, without long-term cost.
The team’s injury list was short yet consistent, with seven players missing the mandatory minicamp that concluded this work stretch.
Del Rio doesn’t believe any ailment will remain when the team starts training camp in late July.
“We feel good about the whole team coming into camp being ready to work,” Del Rio said Thursday. “Obviously, we’ll see when we get there, but that’s the anticipation, that we’d have a healthy team going into camp.”
That includes safety Reggie Nelson, defensive lineman Denico Autry and running back Roy Helu, a trio absent from offseason proceedings open to the press. Helu is recovering from hip surgeries, Nelson is dealing with a lower leg injury. Autry’s injury is undisclosed.
The Raiders also missed linebacker Neiron Ball, cornerback Neiko Thorpe, and tight end Clive Walford, players present but inactive in practice. Cornerback DJ Hayden joined that group Thursday with what Del Rio termed a minor tweak.
The player who missed the offseason program needing it most is first-round rookie safety Karl Joseph, who missed practice recovering from knee surgery dating to the college season.
Rookies need all the reps they can get prior to their first season, but the Raiders tried to make the best of this setback.
“Ideally, he’s doing everything right now,” Del Rio said. “Short of that, what we can do is we can do the walk-thrus, we can do the meetings, we can spend extra time with him.
“Those are things that we’ve been doing and we’ll continue to do. As we go through this period here where they’re on their own, it’ll be more about physically getting himself in tip-top shape. But, mentally, being able to go back over the tape and being able to spend time (reviewing tape). It won’t be with us, it won’t be with coaches, but he can get that done. He can spend time looking at stuff, and I know he will.”
Joseph expects to return at the start of training camp, and did significant side work during practices that showed speed burst and the ability to change direction without incident.