Raiders report: Olympic flag football spurs locker room trash talk

The international contingent in the Raiders’ locker room made for a lively debate over the announcement that flag football would be added to the Olympic schedule in 2028.

“I think we’ll be good, but I know we’ll at least be better than Germany,” offensive tackle and England native Jermaine Eluemunor said, clearly directing his comments in the direction of fullback Jakob Johnson.

Johnson expressed interest in playing for his native Germany, though he’s skeptical of Eluemunor’s potential inclusion.

“Unfortunately there’s no real spot for him on a flag football team,” Johnson said jokingly. “He’s about 200 pounds too heavy to play flag football at any position. So maybe he can get a role on the coaching staff or something like that. Either way, I don’t see England going far in the Olympics.”

That kind of banter is typical for the two Europeans, whose daily roast battles get particularly loud and humorous when the topic turns to their home countries.

The trash-talking spilled over to other parts of the locker room, which drove home the point that there is genuine enthusiasm about the addition of football.

“It’s giving NFL players an outlet to get to the Olympics,” Eluemunor said. “That’s super cool to me.”

Several players indicated they would be open to being on the roster and competing for their country. Johnson even shouted across the room to point out that quarterback Brian Hoyer has dual citizenship and could play for Germany, though he would be 42 at the time.

“You already know I’ll be out there. You’ll see me for sure,” Johnson said. “I think we’ll surprise a couple people. You guys (the United States) are notorious for talking a big talk and then blowing it, like in basketball. We are world champions. I think a nice gold medal in football would go nicely with that.”

On a more serious note, Johnson said the inclusion of a form of American football will only help his sport continue to grow in his native country.

“The excitement about football has already been growing, as evidenced by three million people trying to buy tickets to the Germany games,” he said. “I think the excitement for flag football is going to help it grow even more because it’s such an accessible sport. I think we’ll see a lot of great athletes from other sports transition over, some of our track and field guys and things like that.”

Injury report

Wide receiver Davante Adams was upgraded to full participation Thursday after getting in a limited session Wednesday and should be good to go Sunday against the Bears despite a lingering shoulder injury.

Offensive tackle Justin Herron also practiced in a limited capacity for the first time since entering concussion protocol last week. Defensive end Maxx Crosby remained limited with knee and thumb concerns, as the team continues to manage his workload.

Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo did not practice and has been ruled out for Sunday’s game because of a back injury. Cornerback Nate Hobbs missed practice again because of an ankle injury that has kept him out the past three games.

No change for Hall

Cornerback Tyler Hall said he appreciates his promotion to the active roster from the practice squad, though it won’t change much about his approach.

“Every day I just put my head down and go to work to try to learn and improve in whatever way I can as a football player,” he said. “Just understanding my role and doing whatever the team needs from me.”

The fourth-year pro was called up for the Chargers game and played strictly on special teams. He saw his workload increase dramatically in his call-ups the past two weeks, as he played 30 snaps against the Packers and 46 against the Patriots.

“I don’t worry about anything except doing my job and working,” he said. “Some guys got banged up, and I was able to try to create a role for myself.”

Contact Adam Hill at ahill@reviewjournal.com. Follow @AdamHillLVRJ on X.

This post was originally published on this site