The status of Nick Roach means the difference between the Raiders having starters in place at all three linebacker spots, and having a glaring need at the most important linebacker position. And that status is not looking good.
Wednesday Reggie McKenzie answered the question of whether Roach was ready to go with a negative. And from the way he discussed his feelings on the matter sounds very much like Roach's days in Oakland could be done.
"No [Roach is not cleared]. It's still the same," said McKenzie via Bay Area News Group. "The last time the medical staff had spoken to me, he has not cleared as of yet. You've got to start looking out for the player. We'll continue to communicate with the medical staff and I'll talk to Nick and we'll make the decision. But I'm in the best interests of the player and as much as we'd love him to be our signal caller on defense, I don't want to risk life-long injury if he goes out there. Especially if he has any, not discomfort, but any type of feeling within him that something's not right. And for it to last this long is not a good thing."
This is exactly what the team feared when more than a month after he received the concussion in the preseason, Roach still had symptoms.
With the many recent cases of the long term effects of concussions on NFL players, such at CTE, concussions are taken very seriously. As they should.
The new league year is in three weeks on March 10. Usually you would expect a decision to be made by that time. Not to mention so the Raiders can go about looking for someone to replace Roach at middle linebacker. The only other player on the roster with middle linebacker experience is Miles Burris and he will be filling in for Sio Moore who is expected to miss the entire offseason after a hip surgery.