Raiders' coach tired of the talk

Art Shell has grown weary of answering questions about his team's losing ways. He's also tired of talking about suspended wide receiver Jerry Porter. Just ask ESPN's Colleen Dominguez, who got an earful from the Raiders' head coach following practice Thursday.

Dominguez, who was in town ostensibly to do a feature on Porter and Randy Moss, first irritated Shell by initializing the coach's daily meeting with beat reporters with a question about the team's 0-5 start.

Dominguez then pressed Shell, asking him his thoughts on the prospects of the Raiders finishing with a winless record.

''Maam, please don't ... please don't insult me with that question, OK?'' Shell responded. ''I appreciate you very much but don't insult me with that question.''

Dominguez began a follow-up question about the leadership on the team before being cut off by Shell.

''Why would I think ... Why would I even think about such a thing?'' Shell asked. ''Next question.''

Dominguez was again cut off later and Shell turned to answer questions from other reporters. About five minutes later, the ESPN reporter tried coaxing Shell to talk about Porter, the team's disgruntled wide receiver who was suspended last Friday by Shell for what the organization deemed conduct detrimental to the team.

Asked by Dominguez about the chances of Porter ever being activated this season, Shell said, ''I'm not worried about Jerry Porter right now. I'm worried about the players that are here.'

' Dominguez made one last attempt in vain to get Shell to discuss why Porter was suspended.

''Next (question),'' Shell said. ''I've (already) discussed that.''

The tête-à-tête ended, Shell turned his attention to more pressing matters. Specifically, the Raiders finally received some good news when both LaMont Jordan and Justin Fargas returned to practice Thursday.

Neither player practiced Wednesday, Jordan because of a sore back while Fargas is recovering from a separated shoulder. Both players were injured in the Sunday night loss to Denver.

Shell is taking a cautious approach with both players, and although he is holding out hope that Jordan and Fargas will be available to play against Arizona, the Raiders are taking no chances. Fullback Zack Crockett has taken the majority of reps with Oakland's first team offense this week while Adimchinobe Echemandu, a practice squad player, has also gotten work in with the starters.

The Raiders also got some positive news for their defense. Cornerback Fabian Washington is likely to be back in the lineup after missing two weeks with a hamstring injury. Though he is listed as questionable, Washington practiced with no limitations Thursday and declared himself fit.

''Whenever you don't feel it, that's always good,'' Washington said. ''I think I'm ready to go. I'm ready to play.''


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