Bucs' Martin served as a tuneup for Ravens' Rice

Published: Friday, Nov. 9, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 4C
Last Modified: Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012 - 10:40 am

ALAMEDA – After giving up 251 rushing yards to Tampa Bay rookie Doug Martin, what will the Raiders do for an encore?

They'll find out Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens and running back Ray Rice, whose style closely resembles that of Martin. The comparison came from none other than Buccaneers coach Greg Schiano, who coached Rice in college at Rutgers.

"He coached both of 'em, so he would know best," Raiders coach Dennis Allen said. "They look very similar on tape."

Rice, at 5-foot-8, 212 pounds, has a low center of gravity like Martin. He leads the Ravens with 622 rushing yards, averages 4.7 yards per carry and has six touchdowns.

"Ray Rice is a little bit more polished a running back," Raiders linebacker Philip Wheeler said.

With Martin scoring four touchdowns, including breakaway runs of 45, 67 and 70 yards, Allen noted it wasn't the first time the Raiders struggled against the run (Reggie Bush, Willis McGahee).

"But there have been games when we've played exceptionally well, so we know we're capable of playing the run well," Allen said.

Wheeler believes Rice and the Ravens offer the perfect opportunity to get back on the horse.

"I was kind of shocked that we let that happen," Wheeler said. "Even after the game, I was thinking, man, we have a chance to redeem ourselves. We have another team with a similar running attack. We can redeem ourselves."

Injury report – Raiders running backs Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson didn't practice Thursday because of high ankle sprains, and Allen didn't expect to know their status until today at the earliest. Goodson was spotted at the facility with a protective boot on his right foot.

If McFadden and Goodson can't play, Allen said options include increased use of Taiwan Jones, playing Marcel Reece as a tailback or activating Jeremy Stewart from the practice squad.

Linebacker Aaron Curry returned to the 53-man roster, and Allen expected him to play in a reserve role. Curry credited prayer and the care of a chiropractor practicing "neuromuscular re-education" for his return.

"After one treatment, I was better than at any time prior to that," Curry said.

Defensive tackle Desmond Bryant was cleared by doctors and back at practice after leaving the Tampa Bay game early in the second half because of an accelerated heartbeat.

Bryant believed the condition might have been caused by dehydration.

Right tackle Khalif Barnes practiced for the first time since having groin surgery after Week 2, and Allen wouldn't rule him out of Sunday's game.

Defensive tackle Richard Seymour sat out practice because of a sore knee and strained hamstring.

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Read more articles by Jerry McDonald



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