Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

September 19, 2012
McClain held out of practice with concussion

ALAMEDA -- The Raiders held starting middle linebacker Rolando McClain out of practice today with a concussion. McClain will have to be medically cleared under league protocol to return, calling into question his availability for the Raiders' game Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Head coach Dennis Allen said the Raiders suspected McClain might be concussed after Sunday's game at Miami.

"It was something we thought might have been the case after the game, but it didn't seem like it was a major one," Allen said. "Seemed like a minor deal and so it's kind of a precautionary deal that we're going through the whole process to make sure he's fine."

McClain, who played the entirety of the Raiders' 35-13 loss to the Dolphins, said he felt funny during the game but couldn't pinpoint the play on which he was injured.

"It was more in the game where I felt like, well, dang, I don't feel like myself," McClain said. "It's one of the more scary injuries. With an ankle, you know what's wrong. But when it's in your head, you don't know."

McClain said this is his first concussion. Asked if he believes he'll be available Sunday, he answered: "That's the plan. Obviously you don't want to rush anything with the head, but it is what it is. I'm just doing whatever it is I can do to get back. We'll see."

Long snapper Jon Condo sustained a concussion in the Raiders' season opener last Monday night and was cleared to play this past Sunday against the Dolphins.

* Cornerback Shawntae Spencer (foot), right tackle Khalif Barnes (groin) and cornerback Coye Francies (concussion) did not practice today. Allen said the Raiders "still really don't have an answer" as to how long Spencer will be out, though the cornerback was making his way through the locker room still on crutches after practice.

Allen said Spencer underwent an MRI, but, "As far as I know, it's a sprained foot." With Spencer out, safety Michael Huff took some reps at cornerback in practice, something Allen said will likely continue throughout the week. Newly arrived corner Brandian Ross, whom the Raiders signed from the Green Bay Packers' practice squad, was at practice and is trying to get up to speed with the Raiders' defense.

* The rest of the Raiders' injury report: offensive lineman Alex Parsons (shoulder), running back Taiwan Jones (ribs), tight end David Ausberry (shoulder), kicker Sebastian Janikowski (left groin) and defensive tackle Richard Seymour (knee) were limited in practice. Receiver Juron Criner (ankle) was a full participant.

For the Steelers, safety Troy Polamalu (calf) and linebacker James Harrison (knee) were among the players held out of practice today. Also not practicing were running back Jonathan Dwyer (toe), tackle Marcus Gilbert (groin), tight end Heath Miller (abdomen), receiver Emmanuel Sanders (knee) and receiver Mike Wallace (groin). Tackle Mike Adams (back) and linebacker Stevenson Sylvester (knee) were both limited. Running back Rashard Mendenhall (knee) participated fully.

-- Matt Kawahara

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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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