NAPA, Calif. -- In comparing Khalil Mack to a six-story building but saying his elevator was only on the third floor, Howie Long was talking about the potential of the Oakland Raiders' All-Pro edge rusher. That should scare opposing offensive linemen, quarterbacks and coordinators.
Maybe that's why Mack's goal of racking up a 30-sack season, as leaked by Raiders quarterback Derek Carr, does not sound so outlandish ... even if the NFL record is 22.5 by Michael Strahan in 2001.
"That's the number I shoot for, but I didn't want him to tell everybody else," Mack said with a grin at training camp. "But at the same time, D.C., he knows how hard we work, what kind of work we put in, and he knows what I want.
"Realistically, we just want to get the record at least. At least."
Mack, the reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year, has 30 total sacks in three NFL seasons, with four as a rookie, 15 in 2015 -- when he was first-team All-Pro at both outside linebacker and defensive end -- and 11 last season.
It was last season when Mack had an eight-game sack streak and became one of the game's best closers, even if several holds against him went uncalled and he was often double- and triple-teamed.
He had little to no help from the interior, either, with defensive tackles Stacey McGee and Dan Williams combining for three of the Raiders' NFL-low 25 sacks. Neither McGee nor Williams are returning this season.
"It was dope, man," Mack said. "I thought at first it was going to be something for the kids out this way in San Francisco, but when I got there, it was only NFL guys and I was like, 'What's going on?' He was like, 'Bro, you came here to get some work.' I was like, 'Oh.'
"Luckily, I had my cleats and I was like, 'Alright, cool. Go ahead.' It was good, though. I got a lot of great information from DeMarcus Ware and all the other guys that were there. It was something that helped me."
Mack would not elaborate on what tips, exactly, that he gleaned.
"I'm not going to tell, y'all, but it was a lot of stuff that I did learn that is going to help my game, for sure," Mack said.
"Just pulling for each other's mindset and figuring out what it is that we're good at and sharing with everybody else. It was dope."
Dope enough to set a record one day and break the bank as well?
Mack, the No. 5 overall pick of the 2014 draft, had his fifth-year option picked up by the Raiders this offseason but figures to be in for a huge payday next year, as general manager Reggie McKenzie has said signing Mack to a long-term deal is a priority.
"In terms of echelon, he's up there, if not the best in the game right now," offensive tackle Marshall Newhouse said of Mack, whom he plays against in practice.
"It's only going to make me better, and I hope I can challenge him and make him better as well. It's going to be fun, really physical. But it's going to get us both ready for [the season opener at] Tennessee. It's been good so far."
Maybe it'll even get Mack's elevator to go up another floor or three in Long's analogy.
"It speaks volumes when you hear it from a guy like that," Mack said of Long's comment. "Just the mindset that I have in general, I'm not even on, what did he say, level three? I'm not even that close yet. I'm just out here trying to get better every day."