Raiders coach Dennis Allen said Monday that running backs Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson suffered high-ankle sprains against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
McFadden underwent MRI and X-rays on his injury, and the tests returned negative. Allen said McFadden has not been ruled out of Sunday’s game against the Baltimore Ravens.
As for Goodson, he is undergoing an MRI today. The results likely won’t be revealed until Wednesday.
For now, Allen said he is inclined to stand pat until he learns more about the severity of the injuries to his Nos. 1 and 2 running backs.
Once he knows more, he will decide whether to stick with the backs he has on his roster, sign a free agent or sign rookie Jeremy Stewart from the practice squad.
Second-year player Taiwan Jones won’t “earn” more playing time until he shows that he can hold on to the ball better than he has this season.
Jones bobbled a kick-off and mishandled a pitch from Marcel Reece on a reverse in the regular-season opener, and he didn’t handle the ball again until Sunday.
Against the Bucs, Jones fumbled at the end of a reception from Shane Lechler on a fake punt that got stuffed well short of the first-down marker. He got blasted after a 2-yard run in his only other touch.
– Allen said right offensive tackle Khalif Barnes is slated to return to practice Wednesday after missing the past six games with a groin injury that required surgery.
It’s not a certainty that Barnes will reclaim his starting spot from Willie Smith once he is healthy enough to play. Allen said rookie Tony Bergstrom is being considered for the spot, given Smith’s struggles from time to time.
– Cornerback Shawntae Spencer also has missed the past six games. For him, his absence owed to a right foot injury.
On Tuesday, he is scheduled to return to the practice field to gauge his progress in his recovery.
– Allen said he still hasn’t decided what to do with linebacker Aaron Curry. One thing is for sure, time is running out.
Curry’s 21-day evaluation period ends Wednesday. The Raiders have until then to decide whether to activate Curry to the 53-man roster, place him on season-ending injured reserve or waive him outright.
Complicating matters is the potential need for the Raiders to free up a roster spot for cornerback Ron Bartell and, perhaps, a running back if McFadden’s and/or Goodson’s injuries are serious enough to warrant adding another back.
– Defensive lineman Desmond Bryant was released from a local hospital Monday, and he is resting at home, Allen said.
Bryant was admitted to Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley on Sunday after complaining of a fast, irregular heartbeat.
He has not been cleared to return to practice, Allen said. However, there’s still a chance that he will play Sunday against the Ravens, Allen said.
– Allen had this to say, when asked if there have been any discussion about re-signing veteran cornerback Stanford Routt, who was waived by the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday:
“No,” Allen said, without elaborating.
There you have it. It doesn’t appear as if the Raiders are going to revisit the Routt situation eight months or so after they waived him in a salary-cap dump.