Programming note: For comprehensive Raiders coverage from Alameda, watch SportsNet Central tonight at 6, 10:30 and midnight on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area.
ALAMEDA –- Nick Roach was questionable for the regular-season opener after being limited in practice all week.
It’s a week later, and the Raiders middle linebacker is Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day.”
It’s a different week, but the same uncertainty surrounds the status of a vital part of the Raiders defense.
“You can’t rush these things,” Roach said after Friday’s practice. “You can’t come back early or try to push the recovery. You have to get back to 100 percent and pass through the protocol.”
Roach still hasn’t been cleared for full contact, the final stage of the NFL’s concussion-related protocol. They’ll test him again on Saturday in hopes that he can pass and assume his role as defensive brain trust.
Roach estimates that he had two or three concussions during five full seasons with the Chicago Bears. He said that they occurred far enough apart that he fully healed from each one.
The Raiders hope he’s ready to go against the Houston Texans. They certainly missed him against the New York Jets.
“Anytime you have a player with ability and the character in Nick Roach, you miss guys because of who they are,” defensive coordinator Jason Tarver said. “Nick, whoever, you miss them, but you also know it’s next man up all the time in this league. That’s how it goes. There are 16 games and somebody’s going to be down each week. You’ve got to adjust, you’ve got to roll.”
The Raiders rolled with Mile Burris in the middle last week, something they’d do again if Roach isn’t cleared.
Raiders Status Report
CB Taiwan Jones (foot)
RB Maurice Jones-Drew (hand), LB Kaluka Maiava (illness), MLB Nick Roach (concussion), OT Matt McCants (knee)
CB Chimdi Chekwa (knee)
Texans Status Report
OLB Jadeveon Clowney (knee), TE C.J> Fiedorowicz (foot), FS Shiloh Keo (calf)
TE Garrett Graham (back), WR Andre Johnson (ankle), CB Jonathan Joseph (foot), CB A.J. Bouye (shoulder), T Tyson Clabo (ankle), ILB Brian Cushing (ankle), RB Arian Foster (ribs), DE Tim Jamison (groin), CB Elbert Mack (foot), ILB Mike Mohamed (quadriceps), C Chris Myers (foot), T Derek Newton (elbow), FB Jay Prosch (hand), G Xavier Su’a-Filo (back), DE J.J. Watt (ankle/illness), NT Louis Nix III (wrist)