Hall gets good news on hand injury

The Raiders received some good news Monday when an MRI test revealed that cornerback DeAngelo Hall's right hand injury was only a strain and wasn't broken as some team officials feared.

Hall did not practice in the morning workout but was back on the field for the two-hour evening practice wearing a protective cast that he'll continue to wear for the near future.

"He's going to have to have it bandaged for a little bit," Oakland head coach Lane Kiffin said. "It is a sprain so they're casting him up and he'll be able to play with it. How long we don't know yet."

Hall showed just how effective he can be with the cast during a goal line drill when he came up near the line of scrimmage and laid a nice hit on one of Oakland's running backs.

"A lot of guys would hold themselves out of that period, the goal line period with the cast on, but he stepped right up," Kiffin said. "Even though we weren't live, he came up and hit the guy almost as live as you could. Most guys right there you tell them to stay up but our team needs to feel that. For a corner to go up inside a C gap, fit inside like that on a goal line and make a hit, I'm not going to slow that up."

Hall is the second member of Oakland's secondary to be fitted for a cast this week. Rookie safety Tyvon Branch suffered a broken thumb on his right hand during the preseason win over the 49ers and is scheduled to have surgery.

Like Hall, Branch will be able to play with the cast but Kiffin said the team will not allow him to return kickoffs. Nevertheless, Branch stayed after practice in the morning and worked on fielding punts from a Jugs machine.

In other news and notes from Monday's two practices:

· Kicker Sebastian Janikowski did some light jogging for the first time since injuring his hamstring during kickoff practice last week. Janikowski, who did not play in the win over San Francisco, is expected to resume kicking next week and the team hopes to have him available for its preseason game against Arizona on Aug. 23.

"It feels better. I couldn't jog two days ago," Janikowski said. "So it's doing good progress. If I had to I probably could (kick), yeah. Just (want to) make sure it's going to be healthy."

· Newly signed Adam Archuleta was on the field for the evening workouts and practiced with the linebackers. The plan is for Archuleta, a former first-round draft pick of the Rams, to take reps at the Sam and Will spots and also get in some time on special teams.

· Quarterback JaMarcus Russell didn't have a good practice in either session. He overthrew a few passes, launched a rocket that sailed behind tight end John Madsen and had several other throws broken up by defensive backs.

In the night practice during a 7-on-7 drill, Russell launched a deep throw down the left sidelines for Jonathan Holland but cornerback Darrick Brown leaped up and wrestled the ball away from Holland for the interception.

On the first play of a goal line drill during the evening practice, Russell dropped back to throw but the ball slipped out of his hand and went straight up in the air where Hall came in to intercept it. Not everything went wrong for Russell. He made a nice throw over the middle to Drew Carter, who raced past defensive end Kalimba Edwards who was dropping back in coverage during a 7-on-7 drill. · The running backs squared off against the linebackers and safeties in a tackling drill, and with maybe one or two exceptions, the running backs totally dominated. Justin Fargas blew past Jarrod Cooper three times while Darren McFadden had an easy time against Ike Ekejiuba to highlight the drill.

· Rookie defensive end Trevor Scott worked out with the linebackers during the evening practice. That's reminiscent of what Oakland did with former first-round pick Tyler Brayton when they had him playing outside linebacker one year.

· Ricky Brown sat out the morning practice but returned for the night workout and played with the second defense. Brown had the inside track for the starting strongside linebacker job before injuring his back and knee early in camp.

· Running back Joe Echemandu suffered a hamstring injury in the night practice and Michael Bush suffered a stinger. Of the two, Echemandu's injury appears to be the most serious.

· Left tackle Kwame Harris had trouble trying to slow down defensive end Kalimba Edwards, whose first step continues to be impressive. Edwards zipped past Harris and would have had an easy sack if the Raiders were tackling. Harris was later called for a false start and had to run a penalty lap as a result.

· Terdell Sands worked out in the morning but was held out of the second practice after complaining of a sore knee. Earlier in the day Sands had to be prodded by Kiffin, who screamed "Push yourself Sands, push yourself!"

· Wide receiver Javon Walker got thrown to the ground by Grant Irons during a morning drill then slammed his hand to the ground in frustration. Walker also looked confused during a one-on-one drill against Nnamdi Asomugha when he ran a route then suddenly stopped and stood there as the ball landed near his feet.

· Tight end Darrell Strong suffered a separated right shoulder in the morning workout.


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