Jon Gruden yelled out instructions, called out plays and ran an NFL practice for the first time since leaving coaching nearly a decade ago in Tampa Bay.
This was the day Gruden had been waiting for ever since he was hired for a second stint as Oakland Raiders coach.
The Raiders opened their first voluntary minicamp under Gruden on Tuesday with optimism that a change in coach can alter the fortunes of a team coming off a down season.
“He threw everything at me,” Carr said. “He tried to get me to see if I was listening to him in the meetings. We had a lot of fun doing that. It’s always fun to accept his challenge and hopefully do good at it and look at him or wink at him or something like that. We have fun together because we both have the same goal of putting the ship in the water and hitting this thing running.”
Gruden takes over a team that fell from 12 wins in 2016 to just six last season, leading to the firing of coach Jack Del Rio and a second stint for Gruden in Oakland. The Raiders’ facility looks far different than it did during Gruden’s first tenure from 1998 to 2001 thanks to a workout center that Del Rio initiated and new fields.
The team needs plenty of work after last year’s disappointment.
“I got pretty lucky,” Williamson said. “I felt fine then and I feel fine now. I’m sure once the adrenalin wears off later tonight, tomorrow we’ll see how the body feels. I’m sure I’ll be a little sore.”
Brandon Belt hit his fifth home run in six games, Joe Panik added three hits and scored twice, and the Giants won their third straight and fourth in the last five.
One night after hitting a 464-foot homer in the series opener, Williamson hit a first-pitch solo shot to center off Roark with two outs in the sixth inning that bounced off the top of the wall and broke a 3-all tie. It wasn’t as far as Monday’s clout — this one went 423 feet — but was just as pivotal for the Giants.
“We’ve talked about what a shot in the arm he’s been and he’s more than that,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “He came through again tonight. Good for him because he’s worked hard at it.”
Williamson’s deciding home run came one inning after he stumbled over the bullpen mound in foul territory and crashed into a low wall near the stands while trying to chase down Bryce Harper’s foul ball. Williamson stayed down briefly as team trainers rushed out before getting to his feet.