By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Monday, November 7th, 2011 at 12:56 pm in Oakland Raiders.
Subbing for Steve Corkran today . . .
Raiders coach Hue Jackson says very little happens to his team that they don’t hear about from him first.
Kevin Boss apparently didn’t get the message when it came to his playing time Sunday in a 38-24 loss to the Denver Broncos.
Boss was essentially a spectator, playing only on special teams.
“I was surprised,’’ Boss said Monday. “Coach’s decision.’’
It’s been difficult for Boss to gain much traction as a Raider after signing a four-year, $16 million free agent deal after Zach Miller signed with the Seattle Seahawks. He missed the first two games of the season with a knee strain and has just eight catches for 160 yards, with a 35-yard touchdown reception coming from Shane Lechler on a fake field goal attempt.
Coach Hue Jackson said Boss didn’t play because the Raiders used a lot of formations with three wide receivers and two running backs, although that doesn’t account for having Brandon Myers, the backup tight end, on the field.
Boss sustained a concussion against Kansas City but had been cleared medically to play and had practiced all week leading up to the Denver game.
“I’ve got a lot of confidence in myself and I feel like I can help this team, but that’s something I can’t do when I’m not playing,’’ Boss said. “I think things will work itself out and I feel confident that I’ll get back out there and continue to do what I’ve done in the past and that’s make plays and be a solid tight end.’’
The absences of Boss and wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey, who played sparingly and had only one pass thrown his way, were notable. For what it’s worth, quarterback Carson Palmer said both players stuck around and worked on Thursday and Friday during the bye week to get timing with their new quarterback.
“They were here just as much as anybody else,’’ Palmer said.
Jackson said after the game Heyward-Bey simply wasn’t involved in a lot of the formations the Raiders used against Denver.
“I’m not sure of any specific reason,’’ Palmer said. “Sometimes that’s just the way things work.’’
Heyward-Bey was not present during the Raiders’ open locker room session.