This time last year there were “ooh’s” and “ah’s” coming from the beat writers assigned to the Oakland Raider’s training camp. They came in response to countless spectacular plays made by an unheralded rookie 5th round pick out of Tennessee. That Rookie was Denarius Moore. He would go on to show that he was more than just a camp star by registering 618 yards on 33 catches along with a team high 5 touchdown receptions. This, despite missing 3 games due to an ankle injury.
Today, the “ooh’s” and “ah’s” are coming from Moore himself, but these exclamations are coming in response to the pain in his right hamstring. The second year wide receiver injured the hamstring on the first day of mini camp back in June. He was making a cut while running a route during 7 on 7 drills when he pulled up lame, grabbing at his right hammy. He missed the final 2 days of mini camp.
Moore was participating on the 5th day of practice but was pulled early. “I’m not sure exactly when we pulled him out.” Said Dennis Allen after practice, “We made the decision to pull him out; it was somewhere early around the first team period but I’m not sure exactly when it was.”
The most disturbing part of this story is that the original injury happened 7 1/2 weeks ago and is still lingering. At the end of the day, there is one clear objective, as Allen pointed out.
“Those hamstrings can be a nagging deal so we’re going to be cautious to make sure that at the end of the day we have him ready to go come the Monday night opener (vs. San Diego). That’s really what we’re shooting for so we’re going to try not to put him in a position where he sets himself back a lot.”
So it looks like the former Volunteer has seen the last of practice for a while. It sounds as if the coaching staff is going to shelve him for the foreseeable future. Moore is listed as the starter opposite Darrius Heyward-Bey. His absence will allow some extra reps for other young wide receivers. Rookies Juron Criner and Rod Streater have impressed early and would benefit from added reps, not to mention second year man Eddie McGee as well.