Raiders

Asomugha, Lechler, Willis named to All-Pro team

Asomugha, Lechler, Willis named to All-Pro team

Jan. 24, 2011NFL PAGE RAIDERS PAGE 49ERS PAGE

NEW YORK (AP) -- Raiders Nnamdi Asomugha and Shane Lechler, along with 49ers linebacker Patrick Willis were named to the All-Pro team on Monday.

The 2010 NFL All-Pro team, as selected by a national panel of 50 media members:

First teamOffense
Quarterback - Tom Brady, New England.
Running backs - Jamaal Charles, Kansas City; Arian Foster, Houston.
Fullback - Vonta Leach, Houston.
Tight end - Jason Witten, Dallas.
Wide receivers - Roddy White, Atlanta; Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis.
Tackles - Jake Long, Miami; Joe Thomas, Cleveland.
Guards - Logan Mankins, New England; Jahri Evans, New Orleans.
Center - Nick Mangold, N.Y. Jets.
Kicker - Billy Cundiff, Baltimore.
Kick returner - Devin Hester, Chicago.

Defense
Ends - Julius Peppers, Chicago; John Abraham, Atlanta.
Tackles - Haloti Ngata, Baltimore; Ndamukong Suh, Detroit.
Outside linebackers - Clay Matthews, Green Bay; James Harrison, Pittsburgh.
Inside linebacker - Patrick Willis, 49ers; Jerod Mayo, New England.
Cornerbacks - Nnamdi Asomugha, Raiders; Darrelle Revis, N.Y. Jets.
Safeties - Troy Polamalu, Pittsburgh; Ed Reed, Baltimore.
Punter - Shane Lechler, Raiders.
Second teamOffense
Quarterback - Vacant.
Running backs - Michael Turner, Atlanta; Adrian Peterson, Minnesota.
Fullback - Ovie Mughelli, Atlanta.
Tight end - Antonio Gates, San Diego.
Wide receivers - Brandon Lloyd, Denver; Calvin Johnson, Detroit, and Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City (tie).
Tackles - Jason Peters, Philadelphia; Sebastian Vollmer, New England.
Guards - Chris Snee, N.Y. Giants; Carl Nicks, New Orleans.
Center - Maurkice Pouncey, Pittsburgh.
Kicker - David Akers, Philadelphia.
Kick returner - Leon Washington, Seattle.

Defense
Ends - Osi Umenyiora, N.Y. Giants; Justin Tuck, N.Y. Giants.
Tackles - Vince Wilfork, New England; Kyle Williams, Buffalo.
Outside linebackers - Cameron Wake, Miami; DeMarcus Ware, Dallas.
Inside linebackers - Brian Urlacher, Chicago; Ray Lewis, Baltimore.
Cornerbacks - Devin McCourty, New England; Charles Woodson, Green Bay.
Safeties - Nick Collins, Green Bay; and (the following tied) Antrel Rolle, N.Y. Giants; Eric Weddle, San Diego; Malcolm Jenkins, New Orleans; Quintin Mikell, Philadelphia; Chris Harris, Chicago; Michael Huff, Raiders; Michael Griffin, Tennessee; and Darren Sharper, New Orleans (tie).
Punter - Mat McBriar, Dallas.

VotingHere is how the voting broke down.
Quarterback
Tom Brady, 50.

Running backs-x
Arian Foster, Houston, 45; Jamaal Charles, Kansas City, 33; Michael Turner, Atlanta, 8; Adrian Peterson, Minnesota, 6; Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville, 5.
Fullback-y
Vonta Leach, Houston, 17; Ovie Mughelli, Baltimore, 13; Le'Ron McClain, Baltimore, 7; Lawrence Vickers, Cleveland, 4; Greg Jones, Jacksonville, 4; Michael Turner, Atlanta, 1; Jason Snelling, Atlanta, 1; John Kuhn, Green Bay, 1; Marcel Reece, Raiders, 1.

Tight end
Jason Witten, Dallas, 36; Antonio Gates, San Diego, 8; Marcedes Lewis, Jacksonville, 3; Vernon Davis, 49ers, 2; Rob Gronkowski, New England, 1.

Wide receivers
Roddy White, Atlanta, 47; Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis, 18; Brandon Lloyd, Denver, 10; Calvin Johnson, Detroit, 8; Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City, 8; Andre Johnson, Houston, 5; Greg Jennings, Green Bay, 2; Mike Wallace, Pittsburgh, 2.

Tackles
Joe Thomas, Cleveland, 22; Jake Long, Miami, 21; Jason Peters, Philadelphia, 11; Sebastian Vollmer, New England, 7; D'Brickashaw Ferguson, N.Y. Jets, 6; Donald Penn, Tampa Bay, 5; Andrew Whitworth, Cincinnati, 5; Kareem McKenzie, N.Y. Giants, 4; Jordan Gross, Carolina, 4; Chad Clifton, Green Bay, 4; Marshal Yanda, Baltimore, 2; David Stewart, Tennessee, 2; Michael Roos, Tennessee, 1; Michael Oher, Baltimore, 1; Tyson Clabo, Atlanta, 1; Matt Light, New England, 1; Sam Baker, Atlanta, 1; Damien Woody, N.Y. Jets, 1; Eric Winston, Houston, 1.

Guards
Jahri Evans, New Orleans, 24; Logan Mankins, New England, 15; Chris Snee, N.Y. Giants, 14; Carl Nicks, New Orleans, 13; Brian Waters, Kansas City, 12; Kris Dielman, San Diego, 9; Josh Sitton, Green Bay, 5; Brandon Moore, N.Y. Jets, 3; Ryan Lilja, Kansas City, 3; Steve Hutchinson, Minnesota, 1; Rich Seubert, N.Y. Giants, 1.

Center
Nick Mangold, N.Y. Jets, 37; Maurkice Pouncey, Pittsburgh, 11; Casey Wiegmann, Kansas City, 1; Alex Mack, Cleveland, 1.

Placekicker
Billy Cundiff, Baltimore 24; David Akers, Philadelphia, 10; Sebastian Janikowski, Raiders, 4; Rob Bironas, Tennessee, 4; Matt Bryant, Atlanta, 4; Adam Vinatieri, Indianapolis, 3; Neil Rackers, Houston, 1.

Kick returner
Devin Hester, Chicago, 43; Leon Washington, Seattle, 4; Jacoby Ford, Raiders, 2; Marc Mariani, Tennessee, 1.

DefenseEnds
Julius Peppers, Carolina, 35; John Abraham, Atlanta, 21; Justin Tuck, N.Y. Giants, 16; Osi Umenyiora, N.Y. Giants, 9; Dwight Freeney, Indianapolis, 7; Trent Cole, Philadelphia, 4; Jason Babin, Tennessee, 2; Jared Allen, Minnesota, 2; Robert Mathis, Indianapolis, 1; Cameron Wake, Miami, 1; Vince Wilfork, New England, 1; Justin Smith, 49ers, 1.

Tackles
Haloti Ngata, Baltimore, 45; Ndamukong Suh, Detroit, 30; Vince Wilfork, New England, 15; Kyle Williams, Buffalo, 3; Justin Smith, 49ers, 2; B.J. Raji, Green Bay, 1; Casey Hampton, Pittsburgh, 1; Jonathan Babineaux, Atlanta, 1.

Outside linebackers-z
Clay Matthews, Green Bay, 39; James Harrison, Pittsburgh, 31; DeMarcus Ware, Dallas, 9; Cameron Wake, Miami, 9; Tamba Hali, Kansas City, 7; Lance Briggs, Chicago, 2; Terrell Suggs, Baltimore, 1.

Inside linebacker-q
Patrick Willis, 49ers, 28; Jerod Mayo, New England, 21; Brian Urlacher, Chicago, 20; Ray Lewis, Baltimore, 18; Lawrence Timmons, Pittsburgh, 8; Jonathan Vilma, New Orleans, 1; Derrick Johnson, Kansas City, 1; A.J. Hawk, Green Bay, 1.

Cornerbacks
Nnamdi Asomugha, Raiders, 20; Darrelle Revis, N.Y. Jets, 19; Devin McCourty, New England, 17; Charles Woodson, Green Bay, 14; Asante Samuel, Philadelphia, 12; Tramon Williams, Green Bay, 8; Brent Grimes, Atlanta 3; DeAngelo Hall, Washington, 2; Champ Bailey, Denver, 2; Joe Haden, Cleveland, 1; Brandon Flowers, Kansas City, 1; Antoine Winfield, Minnesota, 1.

Safeties
Troy Polamalu, Pittsburgh, 47; Ed Reed, Baltimore, 41; Nick Collins, Green Bay, 4; Darren Sharper, New Orleans, 1; Antrel Rolle, N.Y. Giants, 1; Malcolm Jenkins, New Orleans, 1; Michael Griffin, Tennessee, 1; Eric Weddle, San Diego, 1; Chris Harris, Chicago, 1; Michael Huff, Raiders, 1; Quintin Mikell, Philadelphia, 1.

Punter
Shane Lechler, Raiders, 34; Mat McBriar, Dallas, 11; Sam Koch, Baltimore, 3; Donnie Jones, St. Louis, 2.

Notes:
x-three voters selected only one running back.
y-one voter selected did not vote for a fullback.
z-two voters selected only one outside linebacker.
q-two voters selected only one inside linebacker.

Melifonwu back at Raiders practice, designated to return off IR

obi-melf-black-cowboys.jpg
AP

Melifonwu back at Raiders practice, designated to return off IR

ALAMEDA – Obi Melifonwu participated in a Raiders practice Tuesday afternoon, his first session in months.

The second-round safety has been on injured reserve all season and hasn’t done football activities of any kind since suffering a knee injury in a preseason game in Dallas.

He had arthroscopic knee surgery and was put on the shelf for the season’s first half. Melifonwu's professional career barely started and then quickly stopped. That's why Wednesday's practice was such a big deal. 

“It was awesome to get back out there, finally,” Melfonwu said. “It’s been a while. It was beyond fun to just be out there and practice with the team."

He nearing a return to game action. That’s why the Raiders designated him to return off injured reserve. Wednesday marks the start of a three-week practice window where the Raiders can decide whether to put him on the 53-roster.

He’s expected to do so when eligible. Melifonwu was first able to practice this week, and can join the 53-man roster after Week 8. His NFL debut could come in Week 9 at Miami.

He can't wait, especially because he's physically ready now. 

"I feel 100 percent," Meilfonwu said. I feel fine."

The Raiders still struggle covering the aforementioned skill players, using young linebackers or an undersized safety against those guys. The Raiders have given up the most yards to tight ends and running backs in the NFL this season. Melifonwu was drafted to help cover tight ends and running backs right away in sub packages, with a long-term eye on a full-time starting spot.

"I bring versatility, and I think I’m a guy who can fit into a lot of different spots," Melifonwu said. "Wherever the coaches need me to fit and help the team win, I’m all for it."

He has missed significant development time while out. He also missed most of training camp with an apparent ankle injury. The team hopes he can be ready to contribute when eligible despite missing so much time. The downtime was difficult, but Melifonwu now hopes to hit the ground running.

"It was definitely tough," he said. "As a competitor, you always want to be out there helping your team win. As a guy who hasn’t been hurt, it was pretty tough. It comes with playing football. I’m just glad to be out there now."

Bowman out to prove something with Raiders: 'I have a lot of juice left'

Bowman out to prove something with Raiders: 'I have a lot of juice left'

NaVorro Bowman hasn’t been a Raider long. The inside linebacker visited the team’s training complex Monday morning, signed a one-year, $3 million contract that afternoon and was on the practice field a few hours later.

Bowman’s in something of a rush. His new team plays the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday night. Bowman plans to face them.

That’ll take a crash course in Raiders defense. There’s new terminology to learn and roles to master, even if he hones on a specific package.

It won’t be easy. Even a perfect week might come up short with but one real practice in an incredibly quick turnaround.

It’s rational to think he won’t be ready, fair to give him two weeks practice before a Raiders debut.

That’s not the tack he’ll take.

“Hey,” Bowman said, with a wry smile. “I’m going to show you something.”

He understands the situation. The Raiders are 2-4, in desperate need of an AFC West win. A loss might put the Raiders too far down to rebound. The four-time All-Pro knows he’s needed, and believes he can help if he can get some scheme down.

“It’ll take a lot of hours, a lot of studying, a lot of repeating the same words and things like that,” Bowman said after Monday’s walk-through. “It’s part of being a good football player. You have to put the time in. It doesn’t come easy.

“I’m the guy to do it. I won’t let them down. I’ll put the work in that’s needed to be done.”

Immersing in brand new can be a cleansing process. Bowman left the only NFL team he’s ever known Friday when the 49ers cut him loose. He wanted to spend his career with one team. After seven-plus seasons, a switch was required. He didn’t like losing snaps. The 49ers wanted to go younger at the position. A trade was attempted. He didn’t like the suitor, and the 49ers respectfully pulled back. An outright cut was the decisive action.

It gave Bowman an opportunity to choose his next step. He didn’t go far. Bowman’s new job sits 35 miles north in Alameda, which offered plenty of advantages for a family man.

“My twin girls are five and my son is eight and they’re in school,” Bowman said. “They’re doing really well so you always want to keep that going as a parent. You don’t want to keep switching them in and out. That played a big part in what I was going to do. For the Raiders to show as much enthusiasm in wanting me to come here made my decision a lot easier.”

Enthusiasm was evident in two ways. The bottom line comes first. The Raiders offered $3 million to make this deal quick, adding a solid sum to the $6.75 million base salary guaranteed by the 49ers under his previous contract.

The second was clear in a Monday morning conversation with Jack Del Rio. The Raiders head coach spoke plainly, saying Bowman could make a major impact as a player and veteran leader of a shockingly young position group.

“It was really upfront, letting me know their position and how bad they want me,” Bowman said. “He let me know exactly what he wanted to get out of me coming here and being a presence for this defense. Being more vocal, getting guys to understand the urgency to be really good at the NFL level.”

His lessons start Tuesday morning. Starting weakside linebacker Cory James introduced himself in the locker room Monday and asked Bowman when he’ll start watching film. The answer: bright and early.

Bowman has a game to play Thursday. That’s possible because he didn’t have to relocate. He can just hit the ground running. He’s been constantly learning new systems during the 49ers coaching carousel, so he’d a quick learning. He also sees similar concepts between schemes.

“It’s not too different,” Bowman said. “The terminology is really the hard part. I’m a fast learner. I went out there today and I think I did pretty well. I’ll get in here early tomorrow and learn from my mistakes and try to keep getting better.”

That’s Bowman’s first goal. He also wants to show knee and Achilles’ tendon injuries haven’t sapped his effectiveness as many believe.

“I’m only 29 years old,” Bowman said. “I still have a lot of juice left in me.”