Darren McFadden back at 'full speed'
ALAMEDA, Calif. -- Darren McFadden is back on the practice field after overcoming a foot injury that derailed his 2011 season and on Tuesday declared himself "full speed ahead."
Everybody has their own opinion, so, for me, I'm just going out there playing, going hard. If I get hurt, so be it. I could see if it was just going down the street, falling over, getting hurt, that's different, but I'm out there playing hard when I get hurt.” -- Darren McFadden, on whether he is injury prone
McFadden was off to a fast start last season before suffering a Lisfranc injury that cost him the final nine games of the season and was a big reason why the Oakland Raiders missed the playoffs. He led the NFL with 610 yards rushing through six games and felt he had a shot at an 1,800-yard season. He also added 129 yards receiving and scored five total touchdowns as the Raiders opened the season 4-2.
He said Tuesday that his goal for the 2012 season remains to reach the 1,800-yard mark.
"I was hoping to get to 1,800 rushing yards, but it didn't work out that way," McFadden told reporters, according to the Oakland Tribune. "I will keep pushing for it this year and hopefully get to those goals."
McFadden injured his right foot last season catching a pass early in the first quarter Oct. 23 against Kansas City. McFadden said he initially didn't think the injury was that serious but that it started to feel much worse the day after. The Raiders originally described the injury as a sprained foot and designated him week-to-week before it was discovered he had a more serious injury.
"It was one of those things where you just hated it," McFadden said. "Week after week you're trying to get out there, and you can't get out there because your foot won't let you. One of those deals, you have to just keep going, keep pushing for it. Injuries like that take a lot of time to heal up, so it's not something you can just get back out there on too soon."
McFadden said it took until early April until he could start running again and now he has no limitations. He has been running full speed and making cuts on the foot, showing signs of what he can bring to the Raiders offense this season if he can remain healthy.
That's always been the biggest question for McFadden, who has missed 19 games in his first four seasons with foot, toe, shoulder, knee and hamstring injuries. Despite that history, McFadden disagrees with the notion that he is injury prone.
"Everybody has their own opinion, so, for me, I'm just going out there playing, going hard. If I get hurt, so be it," he said. "I could see if it was just going down the street, falling over, getting hurt, that's different, but I'm out there playing hard when I get hurt."
Quarterback Carson Palmer, who didn't get to play with McFadden last season, is finally getting to glimpse what McFadden can bring to the Raiders' offense.
"That's the hardest thing for me right now is you want to watch him 'cause he's so electrifying and he can do so many different things," Palmer said Tuesday. "But I have a job on bootlegs and things like that and I have to make sure I get him the ball and then boot, but getting him on the field is just something the defense has to key on and really focus on, and it's been great to work with."
NotesWR Darrius Heyward-Bey said he regretted "bringing bad attention to the team" for his recent arrest on a charge of misdemeanor drunken driving. ... LB Rolando McClain is not in camp this week because he is scheduled to go on trial Thursday in Alabama on misdemeanor assault, firearms and other charges for allegedly firing a gun near someone's head in December. ... S Mike Mitchell also was not in camp because of a knee injury and DL Richard Seymour stayed home to work out on his own. ... DL Matt Shaughnessy (shoulder), C Stefen Wisniewski (shoulder) and G Mike Brisiel (hamstring) were among the injured players working on the side. .. The team announced Tuesday that it had signed free-agent fullback Owen Schmitt, who played the last two seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles. Schmitt also played for two years with the Seattle Seahawks.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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