Raiders lose three defensive backs to concussions


The Raiders issues in the secondary began on the first game of the season and they have continued through the season. On Sunday against the Browns, they saw three members of that secondary leave with concussions.

The first player to go down was Matt Giordano on the final play of the first quarter. He tackled Browns tight end Ben Watson and didn't get up. He left the game and didn't return as tests revealed he had a concussion. He was replaced at free safety by Mike Mitchell.

The Raiders had benched Ron Bartell in the second quarter after he gave up a 44-yard touchdown catch and replaced him with Phillip Adams. Adams had an interception a short time later. Then in the third quarter, Adams left the game with a concussion though it is uncertain exactly which play in which he suffered it. This forced the Raiders to put Bartell back in the game. Adams was also replaced in his return duties by Denarius Moore.

A short time after the Raiders announced the Adams had a concussion and would not return, Mitchell too was taken from the field and to the locker room with a concussion. The Raiders then were forced to dig even deeper into their depleted secondary and replace him with Brandian Ross.

Every one of the concussed players were forced into starting duties due to injuries to other players. These injuries started in week one with the loss of Bartell to a broken shoulder blade and continued with the foot sprain to Shawntae Spencer which eventually had him placed on injured reserve.

Those injuries had Michael Huff switching from free safety to cornerback and Matt Giordano taking his spot at free safety. Huff has been very solid at corner but he knows better than anyone how frustrating it has been to field this patchwork secondary every week.

"It's definitely tough, because we don't carry many safeties, especially with me outside," said Huff. "With all three of ‘em hurt at one point, it's definitely tough. Just have to find a way. It's ugly."

With the injuries at safety, it seems like to some that it could make sense to move him back to free safety. But it is really like the old fingers in the leaky dam. You plug one hole and another leak springs.

Since replacing Huff, Giordano seems to suffer an injury of some sort every game. This is also his second concussion this season which could mean he misses next Thursday's game against the Broncos. The Raiders will hope Mitchell's concussion isn't as serious because they will need him to step in again.

There are no days off in the short week should know the status of all three players fairly soon.

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