ALAMEDA – Raiders strong safety Tyvon Branch has been practicing for two weeks now, but the team doesn’t consider him ready to play.
He was downgraded from questionable to out before a road loss to the New York Jets and was deemed doubtful for Sunday’s home game against the Kansas City Chiefs on the Raiders’ official injury report.
While coach Dennis Allen didn’t anticipate much time between Branch’s return to practice and play, the veteran hasn’t responded as well as expected.
That has less to do with his healing fractured fibula than the rigors of playing his position.
“It’s really a factor of whether he’s fully healthy enough to go out there and perform the things he has to perform to play the position he has to play,” Allen said. “When you’re dealing specifically with a lower body injury at the defensive back position, you have to remember that the player will be doing a lot of running. We’ll have to see when he gets back to where he can be fully effective.”
The Raiders have kept Branch on the 53-man roster since he got hurt during a Week 2 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars. With just two games remaining, Allen’s patience may run out. The Raiders may move Branch to injured reserve before he has a chance to come back.
“Nobody has a crystal ball to know when a guy is going to get back, but you’ve got to make the best decisions that you can and forecast if there’s a chance they can come back at help you,” Allen said. “If they do, you keep them up and if not, then you’ve got to put them on IR.”
Moore expected to play: Receiver Denarius Moore was listed as questionable on the team's injury report, but Allen said there were positive signs that indicate he'll play Sunday against the Chiefs.
Raiders Status Report
RB Darren McFadden (hamstring), RB Jeremy Stewart (knee, ankle)
S Tyvon Branch (ankle), DT Vance Walker (concussion)
WR Denarius Moore (shoulder)
TE Nick Kasa (concussion), OLB Sio Moore (neck), DE Jason Hunter (foot, finger), RT Tony Pashos (foot), RB Rashad Jennings (concussion), LG Khalif Barnes (knee, ankle), RG Mike Brisiel (knee)
Chiefs Status Report
LT Branden Albert (knee), TE Anthony Fasano (concussion, knee), OLB Justin Houston (elbow)
WR Dexter McCluster (ankle)
CB Marcus Cooper (back), C Rodney Hudson (elbow), TE Sean McGrath (knee), CB Ron Parker (shoulder), FB Anthony Sherman (knee, ankle), LB Nico Johnson (ankle)