Raiders coach Dennis Allen said wide receiver Jacoby Ford’s surgery went well. He also revealed for the first time that Ford suffered the dreaded Lisfranc injury.
“It’s a hard injury to come back from,” running back Darren McFadden said.
McFadden speaks from experience. He suffered a similar injury last season and missed the final nine games.
Allen said the Raiders were hopeful of Ford recovering from the injury he suffered Aug. 17 against the Arizona Cardinals without surgery. However, his foot didn’t respond to treatment and rest as well as hoped.
“As I understand it, anyway, it’s the Lisfranc that he had last year,” Allen said. “It’s the same exact injury. They expected it to get better, and it didn’t get better, or at least it wasn’t good enough for him to do that job that he’s going to have to do. We all felt like surgery was the best option.”
Allen said Ford is going to be out for an extended period.
“They said the procedure went well,” Allen said. “And again, we’ll see how long that means.”
McFadden said he is symptathetic toward Ford, knowing full well how difficult it is recovering from the Lisfranc injury. McFadden didn’t require surgery, yet he missed more than half the season.
For those asking, McFadden’s injury happened at the Coliseum. Ford’s happened in Arizona. So, no need to blame the Coliseum playing surface.
“It’s just a good thing that he was able to go out there and catch it early,” McFadden said, “so he could be able to get it corrected and try to work on getting back.”
— Middle linebacker Rolando McClain missed practice today as a result of an ankle injury he suffered Monday night against the San Diego Chargers. Running back Taiwan Jones also missed practice. In his case, it was because of a ribs injury he suffered Monday.
“It’s not as bad as last year, but we’ll see,” McClain said, when asked if he intends to play Sunday.
— Speaking of Jones, Allen said the battle for the primary backup spot behing McFadden remains wide open between Jones and Mike Goodson.
Goodson received two carries against the Chargers. Jones became a non-factor after he fumbled the game-opening kick and mishandled a pitch from fullback Marcel Reece on a reverse.
“It’s still a battle there,” Allen said, “and it will probably be a battle throughout the remainder of the season. That’s really kind of the way we like it. Competition brings out the best in everybody.”
— Allen held out wide receiver Denarius Moore from the Chargers game in hopes of having him healthy for the long run. Sounds as if that was a prudent move, based upon the reviews Wednesday.
“He looked like Denarius of old,” quarterback Carson Palmer said. “He made a couple phenomenal catches (in practice). His burst was there last week, it’s just more conditioning, really getting in practice. There’s a totally different type of shape.”
Palmer said the Raiders the the “smart” thing by holding out Moore and giving him added time to recover from the hamstring injury that forced him to miss most of training camp and all four exhibition games.
“It was a very smart move by the staff and the training guys to hold him out and let him really get his lungs right and get his game tempo, game speed right,” Palmer said. “And he’s back this week. You can tell.”
Moore made it seem as if he doesn’t have any doubt about making his 2012 debut.
“I’m very excited,” Moore said. “I’m back with my teammates. I’m ready to rock.”
Don’t count on Moore returning punts Sunday.
— The Raiders worked out the following players Wednesday morning: defensive end Brandon Bair, defensive tackles Kade Weston and Bryce Davis and long-snappers Nick Guess, Swanson Miller, Kyle Nelson, Ryan Pontbriand, Travis Tripucka and Ryan Senser.
Ultimately, the Raiders signed Bair and Guess to their practice squad.
Allen said Guess will be the long-snapper against the Dolphins on Sunday if regular long-snapper Jon Condo (concussion) is unable to play.
“We would anticipate, if (Condo) isn’t able to go, that he would come in and take that role,” Allen said of Guess, who was an undrafted rookie out of Tennessee that signed with the Chargers in the offseason.
Allen said it might be as late as Saturday before there’s any definitive word on whether Condo is healthy enough to play. Condo is being evaluated by team doctors on a daily basis, and he has to pass a series of tests before he gets cleared.
Guess watched the game Monday night and had an inkling his phone might ring Tuesday, either from the Raiders or Redskins.
“I was definitely thinking about getting a call, absolutely, because the Redskins snapper broke his arm and then this happened to Jon,” Guess said. “I was definitely hoping to get a phone call. I didn’t know. I’m a rookie, so I don’t know how this process work. After I saw the hit, I just felt bad for Jon because I know it was just like a freak accident.”
— Dolphins running back Reggie Bush said Wednesday that McFadden is the one back in the NFL today that can withstand the kind of workload that used to be commonplace for running backs in the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s.
Palmer said there’s a fine line and that there’s a way to be smart about how many times McFadden touches the ball in a game. Against the Chargers, McFadden rushed 15 times and caught 13 passes. He also had five other passes thrown his way.
“You don’t want to overuse him,” Palmer said. “But I would rather throw him the ball 10, 15 times than have him run the ball 35. If they’re going to let us throw it to him, that’s OK with us, and if they’re going to take him away that means somebody’s open downfield.”
McFadden said he will take whatever comes his way and that he is durable enough to hold up with a sizable workload over the course of a long season.
“I just leave it to the coaches,” McFadden said. “If my number is called upon, I’m going to go out there and run the ball or catch the ball, whatever they decide. I just leave that to the coaches and go with whatever they decide.”
— McClain and defensive tackle Tommy Kelly are from the south, so they aren’t as concerned about the heat and humidity forecast for Sunday’s game in Miami.
“It don’t really matter,” McClain said. “Tennessee my first year was like being at home. Then we played Miami last year, and it felt like home to me. It’s just hot. It’s not like you died or anything. It’s just a little sun. Drink some water, you’ll be fine.”
Palmer said Allen already has addressed the issue, instructing players on how to hydrate properly and how to deal with the conditions mentally.
“It will be a factor,” Palmer said. “Just like we use the dirt when we play on it at home as an advantage, because other guys don’t play on it, they use the heat as an advantage for them.”