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Darrius Heyward-Bey officially ruled out for Sunday

Darrius Heyward-Bey

Oakland Raiders wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey is on the ground following an injury during the fourth quarter of an NFL football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Sept. 23, 2012. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)


Raiders wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey said this week that he is eager to get back on the field after being carted off the field in Oakland last Sunday, but he will have to cool his jets a little bit longer.

The Raiders announced Saturday afternoon that they downgraded Heyward-Bey from doubtful to out for the game against the Broncos. This isn’t a particularly surprising turn of events. Heyward-Bey had to spend a night in the hospital after taking a shot to the head from Steelers safety Ryan Mundy and he didn’t practice all week because of the concussion and neck injury he suffered on the play.

The Raiders will be on their bye in Week Five, which means that Heyward-Bey will have two full weeks to recover before the Raiders face the Falcons on Oct. 14. Offensive coordinator Greg Knapp hinted this week that Derek Hagan will start in Heyward-Bey’s place ahead of rookies Rod Streater and Juron Criner.

“Derek has really taken to the offense pretty well -- Hagan. This week, the last two days, we’ve had very good practices with the young guys (Streater and fellow rookie Juron Criner), but they are still young guys and I hate to put the burden on a rookie receiver if we don’t have to,” Knapp said, via the Sacramento Bee. “You’ll probably see a rotation with all four of them playing some sort. I’ve been very impressed with Derek and how quickly he’s learned the offense.”

The Raiders also ruled tight end Richard Gordon out for the game.