Jennings not cleared to play vs. Jets

Jennings preparing to play, loves Jones' explosiveness

Jennings not cleared to play vs. Jets
December 8, 2013, 9:15 am
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Rashad Jennings was inadvertently kicked in the back of the helmet Nov. 28 against Dallas and his head slammed into the turf. (AP)

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – The Raiders were thin at running back even before Rashad Jennings was ruled out with a concussion.

He wasn’t cleared for contact and therefore ineligible to play Sunday morning’s game against the New York Jets.

That means fullback Marcel Reece will be the primary ball carrier, and defensive back Taiwan Jones (a converted running back) will be a secondary option after taking offensive practice reps this week.

The rushing situation is dire because Darren McFadden (ankle) is out a fifth game and Jeremy Stewart will miss his first with knee and ankle injuries.

Jennings was inadvertently kicked in the back of the helmet Nov. 28 against Dallas and his head slammed into the turf. He was wobbly walking off the field then, and while he was limited in practice, he was never formally cleared to play.

Jennings had a concussion last season, and missed four games after the injury.

Reece will step in, just has he did over a four-game stretch last season. He exceeded 100 yards total offense in three of those contests.

Jones has 94 rushing yards over two seasons, although he had ball security issues even in practice.

In addition to the three running backs, receiver Denarius Moore (shoulder), safety Tyvon Branch (ankle), guard Lamar Mady and right guard Mike Brisiel (knee) were also inactive.