ALAMEDA – Raiders linebacker Miles Burris is eligible to come off the physically unable to perform list when ready. Despite the second-year pro’s best hopes, it’s always been uncertain when he will be.
Coach Dennis Allen gave a vague estimation on Thursday afternoon.
“I’m hoping we’ll have an opportunity to get Miles back at practice next week,” Allen said.
That would be a huge step for a player who hasn’t practiced since last season. He had knee surgery and an agonizingly slow rehab afterward, which has put him out of the mix all season long.
Defensive coordinator Jason Tarver tries to keep Burris involved as much as possible, showing a Burris highlight from last season each day.
“We do that in our defensive meeting sometimes to keep Miles entertained,” Tarver said. “We keep him going because you don’t know when those guys — it’s a long season. It’s a marathon, not a sprint -- are going to help you win a game. We keep them engaged, and that’s what professionals do anyway. It’s your job. Miles (has) been very good in their rehab process in making sure they understand everything that’s going on.”
Burris played middle linebacker last season, when he made 15 starts and had 96 tackles. Tarver has him studying all three linebacker spots to give him a chance to fit back in, likely as a reserve.
Burris has a long road left, even after he starts practicing. He must work his way back into the rotation during a 21-day practice window before the team must add him to the 53-man roster or place him on injured reserve.
Limited participation: C Stefen Wisniewski (knee), CB Tracy Porter (shoulder), Kaluka Maiava (hamstring)
Did not practice: SS Tyvon Branch (ankle), RT Tony Pashos (hip flexor), C/G Andre Gurode (quadriceps), OT Menelik Watson (calf)
Injured reserve: TE David Ausberry (shoulder), RB Latavius Murray (ankle), K Eddie Carmona (leg), G Tony Bergstrom (foot); Designated to return: LT Jared Veldheer (triceps)
Physically unable to perform list: LB Miles Burris (knee)