By Steve Corkran
Friday, October 7th, 2011 at 10:57 am in Oakland Raiders.
The Raiders met with veteran defensive lineman Trevor Pryce on Thursday. They apparently came away feeling as if he doesn’t have much to offer them in the way of run-stopping ability because he is not on the practice field this morning.
Pryce, 36, last played in 2010, when he wrapped up his 14th season with the New York Jets. He flashed at times for the Jets but he is, after all, 36 and the product of many head-to-head battles over the years.
Raiders defensive end Matt Shaughnessy is not at practice, either. That portends the Raiders going with more of Jarvis Moss and Trevor Scott, unless defensive coordinator Chuck Bresnahan opts to move Richard Seymour from tackle to end and throws Big John Henderson in the middle.
Coach Hue Jackson didn’t mention anything about Pryce on Thursday. He will be asked about the matter in a couple of hours.
Cornerback Chris Johnson (hamstring), fullback Marcel Reece (ankle) and tight end Richard Gordon (hand) also aren’t at practice today.
Given coach Hue Jackson’s comment Thursday about a tendency to shy away from using players in games who don’t practice that week, it’s unlikely that any of those three will play Sunday against the Houston Texans.
Rookie DeMarcus Van Dyke and Joe Porter likely will get added playing time Sunday if Johnson and Chimdi Chekwa can’t play.
Chekwa was riding a stationary bike during the early part of practice. He had his right calf and hamstring wrapped while doing so. He said Thursday that he suffered a setback while attempting to practice the day before.
Jackson is mulling over several options at fullback in the likelihood that Reece and Gordon can’t play.
For now, the likely candidates to fill in are veteran running back Rock Cartwright and practice squad fullback Manase Tonga.
The Raiders would have to cut a player to make room for Tonga on the 53-man roster if that’s the route they decide to take.
Tonga has not played in a regular-season game during his two years with the Raiders. He said he is eager to make his debut.
Rookie quarterback Terrelle Pryor is working out by himself today in what should be his final practice away from his teammates.
His five-game suspension ends Sunday. He is eligible to rejoin his teammates at practice and receive coaching from Jackson and his staff Monday.
The Raiders might receive a brief roster exemption for Pryor, given he hasn’t practiced all season. However, before long the Raiders will have to cut a player to make room for Pryor on the 53-man roster.
Linebacker Ricky Brown (concussion) also is not practicing. He, too, isn’t expected to play Sunday.
Wide receiver Louis Murphy appears to be making solid progress toward his 2011 debut. However, that might not come until Oct. 16, when the Raiders host the Cleveland Browns.
Jackson is concerned about Murphy returning too soon, when he needs time to get acclimated to the every-day grind of practice and rounding into football shape.
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