NAPA, Calif. -- Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr is rooming with wide receiver Amari Cooper, and the hope is the two will be on the same wave length in pushing the passing game to new heights.
"I think all that interaction helps their rapport," offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave said Thursday. "They talk football, they talk life, and it's a good thing. Back in the day Steve Young and Brent Jones were roommates for years the night before the game. It's just good, as those two young players together, to be more productive."
Carr and Cooper have homes in the same East Bay city and had throwing sessions together throughout the offseason.
"We've gotten to know each other more, and that's always a good thing," Cooper said. "We talk to each other as a person, talk about the plays that we run. I don't want to talk about his personal business, but I've learned more about him since rooming with him."
--G Kelechi Osemele wasn't particularly interested in saying much during a recent media session, sticking mostly with quick answers with little or no elaboration.
Osemele perked up slightly when asked about the skill set of edge player Khalil Mack.
"(He has) athleticism and power, a rare combination ability to be flexible and bend around players and also be explosive at the same time," Osemele said. "I've only seen one player like that and that's Von Miller. So he's in rare air. He's good."
LB Bruce Irvin, who stands to profit from Mack's presence as much as anyone since he plays on the opposite side, has also been impressed.
"Some guys seem to not take advice that have had as much success as he's had in two years," Irvin said. "But he comes to work every day. I really think this was meant to be, to be teamed up with him. We're going to continue to push each other every day and we're going to make it happen this year."
--Offensive line coach Mike Tice said he thinks the middle of his line -- with Osemele at left guard, Rodney Hudson at center and Gabe Jackson at right guard -- will be formidable this year.
"I've been blessed to coach a lot of good football players, a lot of good linemen in Minnesota, some good ones in Jacksonville," Tice said. "Those three guys as a trio in there could be as good as any three guys I've been blessed to coach.
Jackson, exclusively a left guard in college at Mississippi State and for his first two seasons with the Raiders, has made a seamless transition to the right side, according to Tice.
"First of all, he didn't pout, so that was awesome," Tice said. "Second, he looks like a natural over there on the right side and he's having a great camp."