Raiders head coach Dennis Allen acknowledged this week that C Stefen Wisniewski needs more preseason reps and falls further behind with each day of practice he misses. There does not appear to be a clear timetable for Wisniewski’s return from injury, though.
The team is sensitive to the risk of rushing him back from the calf injury he suffered on the first offensive series of the team’s Aug. 13 preseason opener — he has not played since. The severity of the calf strain is not known, but Wisniewski is not expected to play in Oakland’s third preseason game Saturday night and our sources say the team is inclined to take a conservative approach to getting him back on the field.
Wisniewski does not need to prove his toughness — he did that in 2011, playing his entire rookie season with a torn labrum in his shoulder that required surgery in the offseason. He missed the entire offseason program while recovering from the surgery and has not been able to get much work in as he moves from left guard, where he started every game last season, to center. Also concerning is the fact that the offense is transitioning to a zone-blocking scheme under new coordinator Greg Knapp.
Alex Parsons, who has been getting the first-team reps at center with Wisniewski being out, could get the call in Week One of the regular season if Wisniewski needs more time to recover.