The Oakland Raiders returned to their facility Monday to begin preparations for their Week 13 showdown versus the Miami Dolphins. Players had some time to chat with the media and we got some injury updates on key players. Jacoby Ford told the media he is planning on returning to the practice field on Thursday, but he is not optimistic about playing Sunday.
The Raiders have been able to get by in spite of injuries to players like Ford and Darren McFadden. Marcel Reece led the team in receptions and receiving yards as they snuck by the Chicago Bears. Darrius Heyward-Bey quickly returned to the field after a neck injury in week 11, so they are buying some time. However, if they want to make any kind of run into January, they'll need to get their big guns healthy.
That's fairly obvious, but the real issue at this point is how long the Raiders can afford to wait. Ideally they could be conservative in bringing back McFadden and Ford, marching to the division title while resting players for the playoffs. But with teams like Green Bay and Detroit still on the schedule, the Raiders will need healthy weapons soon.
This week they travel to Miami to face a Dolphins squad that has proven incredibly dangerous in recent weeks. The Raiders will likely be without Ford and McFadden, so they'll need to make do with what they have.