Grove's season ends; Baker gets fresh start

It's been a rough year for Jake Grove. He lost his starting center job to Jeremy Newberry in training camp then hurt his knee midway in late October, which sidelined him for seven games. Now he's on injured reserved and done for the season.

Jake Grove, who started all 16 games for the Raiders last season, was put on IR by the team Thursday after his knee failed to respond to treatment and rehab.

Although no decision has been made yet, there is speculation that Grove -- a second-round draft pick in 2004 -- will have to undergo surgery on his knee in the near future.

"I don't know for sure yet," Oakland coach Lane Kiffin said. "They're looking at a couple of different options. Hopefully Jake will be back next year and ready to go. He has a bright future with us."

Chris Morris, who has been Newberry's backup since Grove has been out, will continue in that role.

The Raiders filled Grove's roster spot by signing safety Rashad Baker, who was released by New England earlier this week.

Baker played sparingly in eight games with the Patriots this season. Originally signed as an undrafted free agent by Buffalo in 2004, the 5-foot-10, 198-pound defensive back isn't likely to be in uniform for Sunday's game in Jacksonville but the team will take a long look at him in the off-season.

"It would be really hard to get him up to speed (by Sunday)," Kiffin said. "We claimed him to get him so we have him for this year and next year, and it gives us a chance to look at him before the off-season."


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