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Thursday, October 9, 2003
Updated: October 10, 10:11 AM ET
Notebook: Plummer tests shoulder


DENVER -- Jake Plummer tested his sore right shoulder with some short throws Thursday, but the Broncos won't know if he'll be able to play this weekend until after he airs it out more.

Plummer was too sore to practice on Wednesday, but he made it through Thursday's practice without any problems. He will increase the length of his throws Friday before the team decides if he can play against Pittsburgh Sunday.

"Feeling better, but we still didn't ask him to throw it more than 20 yards," Broncos coach Mike Shanahan said. "Hopefully there's no setback and he'll get better tomorrow."

Plummer partially separated his shoulder three weeks ago against San Diego, then aggravated the injury against Kansas City Sunday when he was knocked down trying to pass in the second half.

Plummer bounced back from the original injury by gradually increasing the length of his throws, but he also had an extra day of practice to prepare for a Monday night game against Oakland.

"I think very similar to the Raider week," Shanahan said of the plans for Plummer. "We didn't ask him to throw over 20 yards and tomorrow hopefully he can. I don't have any guts anymore. I just watch what I see and try to make a decision."

PORTIS AND SMITH: Running back Clinton Portis and wide receiver Rod Smith like to trade jabs at their weekly news conferences on Thursdays. This week was no different.

Smith was about halfway through with his news conference when Portis ran in and grabbed him from behind.

"I'm suing you, but you ain't got no money," Smith said after Portis' attack. "You get some money, I'm going to sue you."

Portis followed by poking fun at Smith's passing ability after the two connected for a 72-yard pass off a reverse last week against Kansas City.

"Come on, you've seen it. It was a horrible pass," Portis said. "I had the man beat by like 15, 20 yards. I had to wait on the ball, (it) took me off my path of running straight ahead, I had to cut back across field. I mean, if the guy would just give me some help."

Smith had a different view.

"He should have scored. He messed up my quarterback rating, but for the most part, he did all right," he said. "He was so wide open, I just wanted to make sure I got it to him because his hands aren't very sure."

Portis also alluded to a statement Smith made about the versatility of Pittsburgh's Hines Ward and Antwaan Randle El.

"Ward and Randle El are better passers than Rod," he said to the laughter of reporters.

KENNEDY READY: Strong safety Kenoy Kennedy tweaked his sprained ankle in practice Thursday but later returned. He's missed two games and is itching to return.

"Watching all the guys fly around and have fun, it's been kind of frustrating," he said. "Especially the KC loss. If I was out there, maybe I could have made at least one play and made the difference."

EXTRA POINTS: Smith will be inducted into Missouri Southern's Hall of Fame this weekend, but he won't be able to attend the ceremonies at his alma mater. "It was pretty good, but I'm really not going to be able to enjoy it," he said. "I wish I could be there to get to see a lot of the people I played with, a lot of the teachers and the coaches." ... Portis said his bruised chest is fine after he played Sunday against Kansas City. He missed the previous game against Detroit after getting hit under the pads against San Diego on Sept. 14. ... DT Daryl Gardener returned to practice after spending the weekend in the hospital with strep throat.