Raiders unsure who will lead way for McFadden
Friday, October 7, 2011
ALAMEDA, Calif. (AP) -- Raiders fullback Manase Tonga finished practice, took a shower and then added a new twist to his Friday routine -- packing a suitcase for the team's trip to Houston.
Tonga is Oakland's only healthy fullback. Starter Marcel Reece is questionable with a lingering ankle injury and backup Richard Gordon already has been ruled out with a broken hand.
Fullback is a critical position for Oakland. Besides being the main blocker for league-leading rusher Darren McFadden, Raiders fullbacks are also a key cog in coach Hue Jackson's passing game. Reece was fourth on the team in receptions in 2010 and already has one touchdown catch this year.
Tonga, a member of the Raiders' practice squad for a second straight season, appears to be the likely replacement if Reece is ruled out. Tonga took all the reps with the first-team offense in practice this week.