By Steve Corkran
Wednesday, August 31st, 2011 at 12:10 pm in Oakland Raiders.
Oft-injured wide receiver Chaz Schilens was spotted on the practice field a short time ago, in full uniform and going through agility drills with a trainer.
That represents progress for a player who has battled a slew of injuries since he joined the Raiders in 2008 as a seventh-round draft pick out of San Diego State.
Schilens suffered an injury Aug. 11 against the Arizona Cardinals on an end around. He missed the rest of that game and has not practiced since. Wednesday marked only the second time in three weeks that he has been seen working out, while his teammates practiced nearby.
The Raiders are counting upon Schilens to be one of their primary receivers this season, if not their No. 1 wide receiver. At this point, they would be thrilled just to have him healthy and available to play at any level in the regular-season opener against the Denver Broncos on Sept. 12.
Schilens has appeared in 29 of 48 games during his three-year NFL career. He missed eight games in 2009 and 11 last season. He has caught 49 passes for 631 yards and five touchdowns overall.
The emergence of veteran Derek Hagan and rookie Denarius Moore as viable options in the passing game lessens the importance of Schilens rushing back for the regular season. However, the Raiders still feel as if Schilens has the potential to be their top receiver at some point.
*Projected starting left guard Stefen Wisniewski was back at practice after missing one day with what coach Hue Jackson described as a “ding.”
Wisniewski has his right knee wrapped, though it’s unclear whether that is the source of his discomfort. He appeared to be moving around fine and ready to proceed with his quest to nail down a starting job his rookie season.
*Defensive tackle Richard Seymour is supposed to be healthy, according to Jackson, yet he was working off to the side during practice.
It’s more likely that he is working through a hamstring injury, which is what Raiders play-by-play announcer Greg Papa said is the reason for Seymour missing practice the past several days as well as last Sunday’s game against the New Orleans Saints.
*Tight end Kevin Boss (knee), linebacker Sam Williams (undisclosed), safety Mike Mitchell (knee), cornerback Jeremy Ware (ankle) and receiver Louis Murphy (hamstring/groin) also missed practice.
*The Raiders are at 80 players right now. Today marked the final full practice for the 26 players who will be cut, traded or placed on injured-reserve between now and Saturday afternoon, the deadline for teams to be at 53 players.
Rookie quarterback Terrelle Pryor won’t count against the roster as of Monday because he will be placed on the suspended list. The Raiders don’t have to account for him on their 53-man roster until he returns from his five-game suspension Week 6.
*Rookie undrafted linebacker Chris Francis also returned to practice after missing one day. He is a long-shot to make the 53-man roster but a solid candidate to be placed on the practice squad if he gets cuts and clears waivers.
*Remember to join the live chat with defensive tackle Tommy Kelly at 3:30 p.m. today. Feel free to submit questions and follow along as Kelly answers questions from viewers.
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