ALAMEDA When the Raiders signed Shawntae Spencer as a free agent in March, coach Dennis Allen and general manager Reggie McKenzie hoped the veteran cornerback could help stabilize a secondary that underwent significant changes in the offseason.
Instead, Spencer has spent more time in the trainer's room getting treatment for a sprained right foot than he has on the field.
He's had plenty of company, too.
The Raiders listed 20 players on their injury report Friday as they prepare to play the Chiefs. That doesn't include linebacker Aaron Curry, who is a roster exemption for one more week after spending the first six weeks of the season on the physically unable to perform list.
Cornerback Ron Bartell is also on the temporary injured reserve list.
Allen slightly altered Oakland's practices this week to accommodate the injuries, none of which are serious.
Spencer and right tackle Khalif Barnes (groin) are the only players listed as out for Sunday's game in Kansas City.
"We've got some guys with some soreness," Allen said. "It's just a matter of making sure that they're ready to go come Sunday, so we listed a few of them as questionable."
Defensive end Matt Shaughnessy and backup defensive tackle Desmond Bryant are among the seven Oakland players listed as questionable. Another 11, including running back Darren McFadden, defensive tackles Richard Seymour and Tommy Kelly, and kicker Sebastian Janikowski, are probable and likely to play.
Just when Spencer can get on the field remains uncertain.
The former 49er, who opened the season with Bartell as the Raiders' starting cornerbacks, hurt his foot against Miami on Sept. 16 and initially needed crutches to get around. He also wore a protective walking boot. Since then, Spencer has made progress but not enough to be cleared to play.
"I'm not in control of the timetable," Spencer said. "Whatever they say is whatever they say. I come to work, do whatever I've got to do, do what they ask. Whenever doc clears me, he clears me."
The situation with Curry is a little bit easier to figure out.
Allen said that the veteran linebacker, who underwent knee surgery in the offseason, has been taking reps with the Raiders' defense in practice and is getting closer to returning.
He'll be eligible to play against Baltimore on Nov. 11.
NFL Lawyers for the league filed a motion in U.S. District Court in New Orleans, arguing that former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue should be allowed to hear appeals on the Saints' bounties case next week.
The action comes after the players' union and the four players suspended in the bounties case filed a motion asking that Tagliabue recuse himself from the case because of what they say is a conflict of interest.