The Oakland Raiders have been bitten hard by the injury bug last week. First starting quarterback Terrelle Pryor could not play with his concussion. Then in the game, the team lost starting running back Darren McFadden and fullback Marcel Reece. The most concerning injuries may be along the offensive line.
The Raiders received a huge blow when center Stefen Wisniewski was listed as doubtful this week with a knee injury. Wisniewski makes all the offensive line calls as well as helps Pryor shift through defenses. Andre Gurode will start with Wisniewski out.
Wisniewski is not the only Raiders lineman who's status in in jeopardy. Rookie tackle Menelik Watson is listed as questionable with a knee injury. He has yet to play this season and only practiced in limited fashion this week. Starting right tackle Tony Pashos is listed as questionable after not practicing Friday with a groin injury. Guard Lucas Nix missed the last two weeks with an ankle injury and is questionable for San Diego. Not to mention the Raiders already lost left tackle Jared Veldheer to torn triceps.
With so many injuries and question marks, the Raiders are going to have to piece together a starting offensive line against the Chargers. Khalif Barnes will start at left tackle. If Pashos can go he will be on the right side. If he and Watson cannot go, Jack Cornell or Antoine McClain will fill in. Both are natural guards and have never played in an NFL game. If Wisniewski and Nix can't go, Lamar Mady will fill in. Mady is another play who has yet to play in an NFL game.
Pryor could be running for his life on Sunday. No matter who is one the field, the Raiders offensive line must play better. They struggled last week allowing seven sacks, although Matt Flynn holding the ball didn't help them. Pryor's running ability can hide some of the offensive line deficiencies, but they are going to have to protect their prized offensive weapon, especially with running back Darren McFadden doubtful.
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