fb pixel

Log In

Reset Password

Souped-Up Raiders

ARLINGTON, Texas — The silver-and-black debut for Jason Campbell comes against a familiar silver-and-blue opponent, though it will only be a glimpse of Oakland's new quarterback.

Campbell's first snaps for the Raiders will come in their preseason opener tonight, when Washington's former first-round pick who is replacing Oakland's No. 1 overall bust JaMarcus Russell faces the Dallas Cowboys.

"Yeah, I get the Cowboys, and DeMarcus Ware and Jay Ratliff I know well," said Campbell, who started for the Redskins five times against their NFC East rival the past 21/2; seasons. "I have the opportunity now to start playing some games and stop looking at the same old faces every day."

Even though Campbell might know the Cowboys as much as he knows his new team, Raiders coach Tom Cable has no plans for his new quarterback and the rest of the starters to get any extended time for a chance to get better acclimated with each other and new coordinator Hue Jackson.

"No, I've lumped the first-team guys through the first quarter," Cable said.

All Campbell wants a chance to do is get used to playing with his new teammates and getting out to a good start.

"The main thing in preseason is for all of us to get a feel for each other in a game-like situation," he said.

For Dallas, it will be the second preseason game in five days.

Tony Romo and the Cowboys' starting offense played only one series in the 16-7 victory over Cincinnati on Sunday night, a 14-play, 63-yard drive that ended with a field goal. They probably won't play much more than that against Oakland, especially since they got an extra game by playing on Hall of Fame induction weekend.

"It really is the first preseason game if you have a four-game preseason," coach Wade Phillips said. "I was going to play the starters a little bit more, except I want to see those young guys play. ... We will play starters more than we did, but it's not going to be a full half of anything like that."

Oakland, which has had an NFL-record seven consecutive seasons with at least 11 losses, acquired Campbell during the draft in April.

A couple of weeks after that, the Raiders released Russell after spending more than $39 million and nearly three seasons trying to develop the 2007 No. 1 overall pick into a franchise quarterback. He won only seven of his 25 career starts with 18 touchdowns and 23 interceptions.

Campbell had 55 TDs and 38 interceptions while going 20-32 as a starter for the Redskins. He was a first-round pick in 2005. He had three different offensive systems in five years for Washington after four different schemes in as many seasons at Auburn.

"I'm happy that he's in a situation where he can kind of get under an offensive coordinator's wing ... just kind of get in a system and grow," said Ratliff, the Cowboys nose tackle who was Campbell's teammate at Auburn for four seasons. "This is a fresh start for him. That's something he kind of needed. I think he's going to be a premier quarterback in this league."

Ratliff last spoke to Campbell before the trade, when the quarterback had stopped attending offseason workouts and was given permission to seek a trade after the Redskins acquired Donovan McNabb.

"I didn't want any information or anything, I just wanted to make sure he's good," Ratliff said. "I knew some team was going to pick him up."

Campbell had a 1-4 record with five TDs and four interceptions while completing 63 percent of his passes in his starts against the Dallas. He was sacked 11 times, including four last December.

"He's a tough guy. We hit him a lot of times. He can run around with the ball, he's got a strong arm," Phillips said. "He showed a lot of leadership on a team that didn't win a lot of games, but he kept hanging in there, so I have a lot of respect for him."

Oakland Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell, shown throwing in training camp, will face a familiar opponent tonight in the exhibition opener. The former Redskins starter challenges the Dallas Cowboys, who used to be one of his division rivals. - AP