Sapp and Curry progressing with rehabilitation


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Jan 22, 2006
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Sapp and Curry progressing with rehabilitation

Raiders notebook

ALAMEDA -- The return to full strength of several key players injured last season figures to be critical to the Raiders' fortunes this season. So far, so good, coach Art Shell said.

To that end, Shell said starting defensive tackle Warren Sapp and No. 3 wide receiver Ronald Curry are on schedule with their rehabilitation from a torn rotator cuff and a ruptured Achilles tendon, respectively.

Sapp attended the team's first minicamp early last month and offered visual proof that he can be counted upon to make a strong return, Shell said.

"He did well with (the shoulder), so he's coming along well," Shell said. "He didn't work but he's coming along well. We're going to take our time with these guys."

Curry missed most of last season after sustaining the same injury he had the previous season. It took well into training camp last year before Curry felt near 100 percent.

"He's further (along) now than when he hurt the thing before," Shell said. "He's doing much better. So the report that I've gotten from Rod Martin, the trainer, is that all of our guys are coming along very well. By the time we get to training camp, we expect everybody to be at full speed."

Small world

Oakland's second-round draft pick, Thomas Howard, arrives with an interesting twist. His father, Thomas Howard Sr., played against Shell from 1977-82, when Shell played offensive tackle for the Raiders and Howard played linebacker for the Kansas City Chiefs.

"I remember Mr. Howard," Shell said. "I asked Thomas (Saturday), 'How is your dad going to feel about you coming to the Raiders?' He said, 'He has to accept it now. He has to become a Raider fan.'"

Howard said he hasn't had a chance to hear his dad reminisce about his confrontations with Shell, though he expects to in the coming days.

Quote of the day

"He amazes me every time I am around him when you go through this process. The knowledge of all the players in this league and the recall of all the players that have gone through the draft; he is amazing. He can talk about a player we chose today and compare him to somebody who played in 1970 just like that, off the top of his head. He'll say, 'Remember this guy?' and then you'll have to think for a while. And he knows the name, the guy's wife's name, he knows everything. It is amazing." -- Shell on what it's like taking part in a draft with managing general partner Al Davis for the first time since 1994.

Camping time

The Raiders' second minicamp is scheduled for Friday through Sunday in Alameda. Shell said this one is mandatory and that he expects full attendance.

This camp gives the players drafted this weekend and the free agents signed since last season their first opportunity to don a Raiders uniform and participate in full-squad drills.

Even so, the rookies and newcomers won't get any extra attention at this camp, Shell said.

"The focus is on our football team," Shell said. "We'll get our team ready to go. We did some things with the first minicamp. We'll do some more with this particular minicamp. We're moving forward with what we're doing. We'll get the rookies caught up between now and training camp."

Extra points

The Raiders selected the final player in the draft for the third time in four years. They drafted wide receiver Ryan Hoag in 2003, linebacker Andre Sommersell in '04 and Maine receiver Kevin McMahan on Sunday in the spot that comes with the title "Mr. Irrelevant." Neither Hoag nor Sommersell made the team.

-- Steve Corkran
Good news on Curry and Sapp.

Hah! Just another twist on what anyone who knows anything about Al Davis should remember. The old guy knows more about this game than Bobby Knight remembers and has forgotten about basketball at least three times over.
I was impressed with Curry 2 years ago before his injury....when did he get injured last season? Do you think he'll still be able to play at the high level he was?
2nd game last season. They rushed him back onto the field.

I don't have any fear about his return to a high level of play. Why? He came into the league with a repaired left achilles tendon. My concern is whether he can stay healthy now. Or how long he'll stay healthy. Since the left hasn't popped again, I'm encouraged about recovery and durability. I just want them to make sure he's healthy before putting him back out there.
Well.....Norv Turner (or whoever made the decision) was stupid to put him back out there too soon last year.....I think Curry is a great player!! :)
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