The Raiders’ preparation for Sunday night’s game against the Chiefs has been complicated by COVID-19.
Nine defensive players from the active roster are out of practice this week because they are on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Most of them went on the list as close contacts of defensive end Clelin Ferrell and are expected back for the game, but that isn’t making defensive coordinator Paul Guenther feel much better about how things are shaping up.
“I don’t know how we can beat these guys with a full lineup at practice, let alone three-fourths of your lineup not here all week,” Guenther said, via Paul Gutierrez of ESPN.com. “What don’t they have? We’re playing the world champs. What don’t they have? They have a great quarterback, great receivers, great tight ends, line is physical. And they’re coming off a bye, so it’s a daunting task.”
The Raiders had to practice without four offensive linemen before facing the Buccaneers, which Guenther called “a little bit different” because the absences were limited to one position group while the defense is shorthanded across the board. The Raiders lost that game 45-20, so they’ll hope that’s not the only thing that’s a little bit different this time around.