Josh McDaniels says joint practice with 49ers will be two teams ‘trying to improve’

Aug 7, 2023, 2:44 PM

Tight ends John Samuel Shenker #86 and Austin Hooper #82 of the Las Vegas Raiders run on a field du...

HENDERSON, NEVADA - JULY 27: Tight ends John Samuel Shenker #86 and Austin Hooper #82 of the Las Vegas Raiders run on a field during the team's training camp at the Las Vegas Raiders Headquarters/Intermountain Healthcare Performance Center on July 27, 2023 in Henderson, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

This week, the Las Vegas Raiders host the San Francisco 49ers for multiple days of joint practices before the two teams meet Sunday for their first preseason games.

Practices will take place on Thursday and Friday, Aug. 10 and 11. The first preseason game for both teams takes place in Las Vegas, on Sunday, Aug. 13.

What makes the week of practices and a preseason game more intriguing than past matchups is the opportunity for the 49ers to face off against their former starting quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo. This past offseason, Jimmy G signed with the Raiders to team up again with his former New England Patriots offensive coordinator and current Raiders coach Josh McDaniels.

But McDaniels isn’t looking at the storylines. He wants his team to compete and prepare for their first preseason game.

“It’s not going to be a big scheme-a-thon. It’s just an opportunity to, number one, compete. I think that’s an important part of this because I think that makes everybody better and you see some competitive fire out of everybody,” McDaniels said. “Two, I think it’s an opportunity for you to really test your fundamentals, your discipline, the details and techniques that you’ve been working on for months against yourself, against bags and shells and all those things, and now you have an opportunity to go out there and kind of see where you’re at.”

Speaking to the media recently, 49ers quarterbacks Trey Lance and Sam Darnold said they’re looking for the opportunity to compete against player who aren’t on their team.

“It’s nice to go against different scheme, different players. So that’s always a bonus,” Darnold said. “Then all the competitiveness that comes along with it is always a fun thing for quarterbacks to enjoy.”

And while both teams had decidedly different 2022 seasons, Josh McDaniels sees the upcoming joint practices as a way to continue to improve.

“I think this is going to be just two teams trying to improve, get better, play good football, and see where they stand. And a lot of people will get opportunities. I think it’s a great change up for us, as coaches, as organizations, to be able to just line up against somebody different because there is a little bit of same as, every day you see the same thing going on in the red zone, it’s the same stuff from same coverages, same plays, etc. And so, to be able to do some things against somebody who hasn’t seen it all, I think it’s a break for the guys.”

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