PRO FOOTBALL / DAILY REPORT : RAIDERS : Shell Has Two First-Team Quarterbacks
Quarterback Todd Marinovich said Thursday that he had given his father, Marv, an airplane ticket to Kansas City for Saturday’s AFC wild-card playoff game against the Chiefs as a Christmas present.
Although Coach Art Shell refused to name a starting quarterback for Saturday’s game, he said that Marinovich and Jay Schroeder have been practicing with the first team this week.
“They’ve both been getting reps in practice,” Shell said. “I won’t go into the percentage, but they’ve both been getting reps.”
Shell dismissed newspaper reports that Marinovich would be the starter.
“I won’t comment,” Shell said. “If somebody says that Marinovich is going to be the starter, then I guess somebody knows. It could be Vince Evans. It could be Jay Schroeder. I’m not going to comment on that. Rumors always abound. Whoever shows up at the start will be the guy.”
Maybe it was a coincidence, but assistant coach Tom Walsh, who is left-handed, as is Marinovich, was throwing to receivers before practice Thursday. Normally, the receivers practice with a ball-throwing machine.
Sportswriter Art Thompson III of the Orange County Register said he was shoved by a Raider employee, Ron Neuerburg, in front of the team’s El Segundo training complex Wednesday.
Although the Raiders have closed practice this week, reporters are allowed to use the press room, and Thompson was on his way there when Neuerburg confronted him. Thompson said Neuerburg shoved him after he had walked out the door.
“It was no big deal,” said Al LoCasale, Raider executive assistant.
Defensive end Howie Long, who played sparingly in last week’s 27-21 loss to the Chiefs, will start Saturday’s game.
“I’m not healthy,” Long said. “But I would like to have the opportunity to be in the game so that, win, lose or draw, I know that I’ve made a significant effort to do everything I can as an individual.”
This is the second consecutive year that Long has played with an injury in the playoffs. He played with a pulled calf muscle in a 51-3 loss at Buffalo in the AFC championship game last season.
“It’s very frustrating to be at this point in the year two years in a row and not be able to play at full capability,” Long said.