Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

September 19, 2008
Running back situation

ALAMEDA -- Darren McFadden didn't do a lot today in practice according to coach Lane Kiffin.

Kiffin said McFadden would need a pain-killing injection in his injured to toe play Sunday in Buffalo.

McFadden spent the last couple of days getting accustomed to running with a steel plate in his shoe to protect the injury.

Depending on how McFadden feels, Michael Bush could start the game and the Raiders could use McFadden as a change-of-pace back.

Justin Fargas (groin) won't play unless he wakes up and suddenly feels 100 percent. He hasn't practiced this week.

*WR Javon Walker will play. How much is anyone's guess. It all depends on how his hamstring feels on Sunday.

*Barring a miraculous recovery from Kwame Harris, Mario Henderson will start at left tackle for the second consecutive week.

*Kiffin said Bills DT Marcus Stroud will be tough to handle. The 6-foot-6, 310-pound two-time Pro Bowl player anchors the middle of the defense.

He's in the mold of the Titans' Albert Haynesworth and the Vikings' Kevin Williams, big DTs the Raiders struggled to block last season.

"So much of zone, you're hooking guys, you're hooking guys, the ball goes outside, but they're so big and so strong, you think you have a block, then all of a sudden he pushes and the next guy can't get to him because they're so big and powerful," Kiffin said. "So they cause this system a lot (of problems), especially when you're running at them. It's better when you're running away because you try to get them on the ground. The only way this system works is if you get these guys on the ground. Especially the big guys, otherwise it makes for along day."

The solution to that is cut blocking.

"Once you put it in his head guys are going to cut, and they feel that, now they slow down," Kiffin said.

*The Raiders are ready for the Bills' special teams.

"We've got 20 different fakes on film over the years from (Bills special teams coach Bobby April), and so we have to be on our toes at all times," Kiffin said. "They're not afraid to do anything."

Bills punter Brian Moorman threw a 19-yard touchdown to defensive end Ryan Denney on a fake field goal in Week 1.

--Jason Jones

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About Raiders Blog and Q&A

Matt Kawahara was born in Sacramento and attended McClatchy High School and UC Berkeley, where he wrote for the independent student paper The Daily Californian. He graduated from Cal in 2010 and started at The Sacramento Bee as a summer intern. He joined The Bee's sports staff in fall 2011.

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