Nick Miller, who has taken over as the regular punt return specialist and was in line to get some snaps as a wide receiver against Seattle because of an injury to Louis Murphy, injured ankle at practice Friday and is listed as questionable.
It was too early to tell if the injury is severe enough to keep him out of Sunday’s game against the Seahawks at the Coliseum.
“He was limping when he came off the field, so we’ll see,” Raiders coach Tom Cable said.
If Miller can’t play, Johnnie Lee Higgins would assume the role of punt return specialist as well as serve as the third receiver in all offensive packages along with starters Darrius Heyward-Bey and Jacoby Ford. Murphy is out with a lung contusion and Chaz Schilens will miss his eighth consecutive game recovering from minor knee surgery.
Miller caught his first pass an NFL player last week, a 32-yard sidline reception from quarterback Jason Campbell.
Cable made official the foregone conclusion that Jason Campbell would be the starting quarterback, but was encouraged by Bruce Gradkowski’s progress.
“In fact, I think if had to do it, I think he could go in and play,” Cable said.
Cable did not rule out making Gradkowski the backup quarterback behind Campbell. If that is the case, it’s not out of the question Gradkowski could be available to start against Kansas City the following week, although the smart money is probably on him coming back following the bye week.
Cornerback Chris Johnson was limited at practice Friday but has not yet passed all the mandated tests following a concussion and will have a chance to do so Saturday. If Johnson can’t play, Cable said rookie seventh-round pick Jeremy Ware would assume the role as nickel back, with Michael Huff also a possibility as a corner in some packages.
Those who did not practice and were declared as out were Murphy (lung contusion), Schilens (knee), defensive tackle John Henderson (stress fracture). Listed as questionable and limited at practice were Gradkowski (A-C joint), RB Michael Bennett (hamstring), TE Zach Miller (arch), LB Travis Goethel (lower back), LB Thomas Howard (knee), LB Kamerion Wimbley (groin), Miller and Johnson.
More to come later . . .