By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Tuesday, August 24th, 2010 at 8:10 am in Oakland Raiders.
The doctor said it was a Grade 2 sprain, although X-rays could be forthcoming if there isn’t sufficient improvement within a week.
And that’s the most accurate medical report you’ll get around here for awhile, because I was standing right there when he said it.
The sprain is mine, incurred Sunday on a walking-biking-running trail when I got too close to the edge as bikes were whizzing past and ended up turning my right ankle and tumbling into a ditch.
The Raiders would describe my absence from practice this week because of “soreness,” “just being smart” or possibly even “fatigue.”
To be fair, they’re not the only ones. Non-disclosure of injuries, or at least staying as bland and generic with the pertinent information, is a way of life in the NFL.
It’s how Luke Lawton’s “headache” morphed into a concussion, Chaz Schilens’ rest periods for his surgically-repaired foot became potential knee surgery and Darren McFadden’s “tightness” evolved into a hamstring pull severe enough to keep him out more than a week.
As for Darrius Heyward-Bey and his curious case of “fatigue,” who knows?
McFadden and Heyward-Bey could return to practice today at 3:30 p.m., according to coach Tom Cable in his conference call with Bay Area media Monday.
As for me, I’ll miss the last three practices (so no more Twitter updates) and hopefully be mobile enough to make it to the 49ers-Raiders game Saturday night. A Raiders chat is in the works for Wednesday afternoon.
Beat writer Steve Corkran will pass along pertinent information as well as news and and notes and I’ll post it here with my right foot on ice.
Jumping to a few conclusions heading into the last three practices of training camp:
– Based on Monday night’s Arizona-Tennessee game, the Raiders ought to be at least 2-1 after three games. The opener in Nashville will be rough, with an extremely difficult defensive opponent played in high heat and humidity. But the home opener against St. Louis and Sam Bradford (A.J. Feely is hurt) in Week 2 and the Cardinals in Week 3 is a nice bit of scheduling.
Both Matt Leinart and Derek Anderson struggled to complete the most basic pass. The Cardinals, without Kurt Warner and Anquan Boldin, looked lost.
– The only way to look at it regarding Chaz Schilens is that anything they get out of him should be considered a bonus. Perhaps Schilens has a quick knee scope and returns to the field injury free forever, but that’s not the way to bet. You watch Schilens when he’s relatively healthy and wonder how he could have ever lasted until the seventh round. Then you look at his injury history dating back to San Diego State and wonder no more.
Good guy, good talent, bad body.
It was a major roll of the dice when the Raiders opted not to pursue a veteran receiver.
– Check out this recent Sports Illustrated story on Jets fullback Tony Richardson and then imagine him playing in Oakland along with Michael Bush and Darren McFadden should he be “terminated.”
– Let’s see, Johnnie Lee Higgins, Yamon Figurs, Jacoby Ford, Nick Miller . . . which one do you entrust with fielding the first Tennessee punt in Week 1? The Raiders would have loved for Ford to seize the job, and he’ll make the 53-man roster, but the quad injury put him behind. Don’t be surprised if it’s Higgins simply because he’s done it before for the Raiders.