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Wednesday primer: Raiders week

Posted Sep 11, 2013

Senior writer John Oehser primes Raiders-Jaguars week with five topics to watch during Jaguars media access Wednesday:

JACKSONVILLE – Here’s this week’s Wednesday primer.

Each Wednesday morning during the 2013 season, jaguars.com senior John Oehser will set the stage for the Jaguars’ Wednesday media access by previewing major topics facing the team that day. Each Wednesday afternoon/evening, he will break down what was learned from Jaguars players and coaches that day.

Here’s a look at five key Wednesday topics as the Jaguars prepare for the Oakland Raiders . . .

1. How ready is Henne? Chad Henne will start at quarterback for the Jaguars because Blaine Gabbert is out at least a week with a laceration on his throwing hand. Henne went 1-5 as a starter in the final six games last season, and then was named the backup this season when Gabbert won the job. This will be Henne’s 38th NFL start, with 31 coming for Miami from 2009-2011. What’s his approach as he gets another chance to start for the Jaguars?

2. How’s the hand? Gabbert will miss Sunday’s game, and his status is uncertain for the following week’s game at Seattle. He needed 15 stitches on the hand, and a huge topic Wednesday will be just how long Gabbert believes he will miss. This will be a daily topic until he is healthy.

3. Will Will Rackley play? The Jaguars’ starting left guard, Rackley sustained a lateral knee sprain against the Chiefs, with Mike Brewster playing the last 26 plays in his place. Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley said Monday Rackley hadn’t been ruled out of practice for Wednesday. Also expected to be updated: the status of tight end Marcedes Lewis, who missed the opener with a calf injury.

4. What of the offensive line? This area struggled against Kansas City, with the Jaguars allowing six sacks and 11 pressures despite having the entire starting unit – left tackle Eugene Monroe, left guard Will Rackley, center Brad Meester, right guard Uche Nwaneri and right tackle Luke Joeckel – available. How will the team fare against the Raiders, who sacked Colts quarterback Andrew Luck four times last week, hitting him six times and hurrying him 10 times?

5. How do you stop Terrelle Pryor? Pryor, the Raiders’ quarterback, rushed 13 times for 112 yards against Indianapolis last week, and completed 19 of 29 passes for a touchdown with two interceptions. His final interception came in the red zone and ended the Raiders’ final scoring opportunity. Pryor was effective when blitzed last week, but his running ability added a dimension to the Raiders’ offense that gave them a chance at an upset. Fifty yards came on scrambles, which means Pryor is effective both on designed runs and when protection breaks down. Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith hurt the Jaguars once or twice in this area Sunday, but Pryor can change a game.

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