ALAMEDA, Calif. – Oakland Raiders linebacker Miles Burris, who has been on the mend since knee surgery in January, and left tackle Menelik Watson, who has been sidelined by a sore calf, returned to practice Wednesday. And left tackle Jared Veldheer, who underwent surgery on his left triceps in August, is closer to returning after a check-up Monday with his doctor in Los Angeles found no setbacks.
“Everything’s real positive,” Veldheer said Wednesday. “We’re on the right track. It’s getting close. This is the exciting part.”
Coach Dennis Allen concurred, pointing to the three-month recovery period initially prescribed to Veldheer.
“We’re at a point now where we can kind of ramp up the rehab a little bit,” Allen said. “I still think he’s a little bit away but indications are that he’s on schedule. Hopefully we’ll have him out there sooner rather than later.”
Technically, Veldheer is eligible to play Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles. That will not happen, though.
Burris, meanwhile, is now on a 21-day clock at the end of which the Raiders must activate him to the 53-man roster or place him on season-ending injured reserve.
“My biggest goal is to get back on the 53-man [roster] and contribute any way I can,” said Burris, who started 15 games at weakside linebacker for the Raiders as a rookie last season but has been studying all three linebacker spots in Oakland’s 4-3 alignment in his time off.
Watson, the Raiders’ second-round draft pick this year, has dealt with injuries to his calf and knee since training camp. He was slated to start at left tackle despite only a handful of practices before knee surgery put a stop to that plan. Still, despite limited action, he could get into a game in short order, especially with offensive linemen Tony Pashos and Andre Gurode still out. Watson will work at both tackle positions in practice.
“With some of the depth issues we have on the offensive line right now, [Watson] could potentially be forced into action sooner than we’d normally want,” Allen said.
Following, then, is the Raiders’ injury report for Wednesday:
Did not participate: SS Tyvon Branch (ankle), C/G Andre Gurode (quadriceps), RT Tony Pashos (hip).
Limited practice: LT Menelik Watson (calf).