Tyvon Branch Injury: Updates on Raiders Safety's Leg, Likely Return Date
Updates from Sunday, Dec. 8
From Associated Press reporter Dennis Waszak Jr.:
UPDATE: Sunday, Oct. 13
From the Oakland Raiders:
Raiders Inactives: Tyvon Branch, Daniel Muir, Christo Bilukidi, Menelik Watson, Kaluka Maiava, Juron Criner, Stefen Wisniewski.— OAKLAND RAIDERS (@RAIDERS) October 13, 2013
Sure enough, it sounds like Branch, 26, is going to miss some extended time. It's a major blow for a Raiders defense that has been the stronger unit for Oakland in the early going, holding the talented Indianapolis Colts to 21 points in the season opener on the road.
Although there's no definitive timetable for Branch's return at the outset, a fractured fibula won't be easy to overcome for the Connecticut product. Assuming that turns out to be the final diagnosis, all he can do is sit back and wait for it to fully heal.
In the meantime, Brandian Ross will probably step into a larger role in the Oakland secondary. He's appeared in 16 games since the start of last season for the Raiders, racking up 20 tackles in mostly reserve and special teams roles.
Ross won't be able to match the effectiveness of Branch, who's been one of the game's most reliable safeties over the past handful of seasons, racking up at least 90 tackles each year since 2009. But the starting spot is a chance for the undrafted defensive back to prove his worth.
Playing alongside a wily veteran like Charles Woodson should help, but quarterbacks are definitely going to test him early. When Branch will be back remains very much up in the air.
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