Three Oakland Raiders returned to practice on Wednesday, but two of them left the field after aggravating their injuries. Menelik Watson and Pat Sims could not complete practice, and it is unknown how long the Raiders will be without either player. The bright spot was the return of running back Latavius Murray. He completed a full practice and said he feels like he is 100% again. He was anxious to get out there and get hit. The Raiders coaches have been teaching Murray to lower his pad level more in order to avoid taking as much punishment to his lower body. It’s apparent that they want to keep him and Rashad Jennings healthy in case Darren McFadden gets hurt again this season.
In an interview conducted by Silver and Black Pride’s Levi Damien, Murray told him, “I’m excited man. It’s been a while since I’ve played against another opponent, as far as not being on my own team, so I’m excited to go out there and play. It being now at this level (NFL Level), I’m excited.” The first pre-season game is on Friday, August 9, and I’m sure Raider Nation will finally get a chance to see these running backs in action. Although, I’m sure that McFadden will be limited to one or two carries, we will probably see a heavy dose of Rashad Jennings and Jeremy Stewart.
Head Coach Dennis Allen said that he will be limiting the exposure to the players who just returned to practice from injury, so I don’t expect to see much of Murray in the first pre-season game either. He’ll probably only get a few carries himself. The Raiders are trying to limit the possibility of experiencing an injury to one of their starters prior to the season. I can sympathize with their decision, because there have been major injury losses suffered by some of the more publicized teams in the NFL (i.e., Denver Broncos, Baltimore Ravens, Green Bay Packers, Atlanta Falcons, San Diego Chargers, Philadelphia Eagles, Seattle Seahawks, San Francisco 49ers, etc…).
We all know that injuries are a part of football, and sometimes they are just unavoidable. Last season, the Raiders dealt with numerous injuries that sidelined many of their top players. Coach Allen seems to be moving gingerly forward with his injured players in a practice setting. More than likely he is trying to avoid another injury plagued year in the regular season. In any event, we are just one month away from the start of the regular season. This being the first week of pre-season games, we finally get to see the players that have been talked about for so long in game-time action, even if it is only for a few plays.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons Baltimore Ravens Darren McFadden Denver Broncos Green Bay Packers Latavius Murray Menelik Watson Oakland Raiders Pat Sims Philadelphia Eagles Rashad Jennings San Diego Chargers San Francisco 49ers Seattle Seahawks