Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE
The Raiders have suffered a few injuries of late that could have several Raider players seeing the first starts of their careers in the team's season finale against the Chargers.
The most talked about injury is that of Carson Palmer who went out with a cracked rib and bruised lung in the first quarter of last week's loss to the Panthers. He was replaced by journeyman backup Matt Leinart with Terrelle Pryor seeing only a couple snaps. That could change this Sunday.
Dennis Allen said this week that he has changed his stance on whether to start Terrelle Pryor due to the his evaluation of "where we're at", which is to say the final game of a double digit loss season. He has said they would like to get a long look at Pryor and that could mean he gets the start over Matt Leinart.
If Pryor plays well, he would either earn a promotion or become a nice piece in a trade this offseason. If he plays poorly or even terribly, it would cause his trade value to plummet and the team would have to seriously evaluate his role on the team.
The next injury is that of Mike Brisiel. He missed practice on Friday which means he is not likely to play Sunday. If he is unable to go, he would be replaced by either of two rookies, Lucas Nix or Tony Bergstrom. For either Nix or Bergstrom, it would be their first career start.
Nix was an undrafted free agent signing as a guard. He is listed behind Brisiel on the Raiders official depth chart but he has been inactive all season.
Bergstrom was the Raiders third round (and top) pick in the draft this year. He has been coming in as a tackle eligible and is listed on the depth chart as the backup left tackle. However, the Raiders drafted him as a guard and if they want to get a good look at him, this might be a great chance to do so.
The other injury is to corner Phillip Adams who himself has his first start at cornerback just last week. He went out with a groin injury and was replaced by Chimdi Chekwa. However, it is Brandian Ross who is listed as his backup and if that holds true, we could see Ross get the first start of his career.
The Raiders wanted a youth movement and they are getting one.