Raiders depending on depth

Oakland likely to be without another starter while two others are questionable

Even though his team had been relatively injury-free the past two years Raiders head coach Jon Gruden's challenge in the offseason was to build up Oakland's depth. So far it has paid off, with players like Adam Treu, Frank Middleton and Roderick Coleman all playing well in place of starters Barret Robbins, Mo Collins and Darrell Russell. That depth will get tested again this week against Philadelphia as the Raiders are all but certain to be without running back Tyrone Wheatley. Left tackle Barry Sims and safety Marquez Pope are also nursing injuries that could affect their playing time against the Eagles. Wheatley did not practice Wednesday while Charlie Garner and Terry Kirby shared time with the first-team offense. Wheatley leads the Raiders with 55 carries this season but is second to Garner in total yards with 181 compared to Garner's 210. Wheatley started against Indianapolis two weeks ago but came out of the game with a knee injury. ''If he's not able to play we'd certainly miss him,'' said Oakland quarterback Rich Gannon. ''If he doesn't play then Terry Kirby will step up and get more work. Charlie will probably get more work as well. We feel like that one of our strengths as a football team is the depth that that we have at a lot of key positions.'' Pope and Sims both practiced with the team on Wednesday but their status is questionable to play Sunday in Philadelphia. Pope has a sore hamstring while Sims is nursing a fractured bone in his foot. Back-up quarterback Bobby Hoying also will be held out of the Philadelphia game because of a sore right elbow, though head coach Jon Gruden said Hoying has begun to throw on the sidelines during practice. ''He's still a week to 10 days away from taking any reps,'' Gruden said. INJURY REPORT Raiders: Quarterback Bobby Hoying (elbow) doubtful, guard Mo Collins (leg) questionable, safety Marquez Pope (hamstring) questionable, tackle Barry Sims (foot) questionable, running back Tyrone Wheatley (wrist/knee) questionable, safety Derrick Gibson (hand) probable. Eagles: Defensive tackle Corey Simon (concussion) questionable, wide receiver Todd Pinkston (wrist) questionable, defensive tackle Paul Grasmanis (Achilles) probable, defensive end N.D. Kalu (ankle) probable, wide receiver Gari Scott (ankle) probable, running back Duce Staley (shoulder) probable, tackle Tra Thomas (eye) probable.

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