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Evans Gets to Suit Up With the Real Raiders : Teams Will Keep 85 Players Until Saturday as Safety Against Another Strike

October 20, 1987|MARK HEISLER | Times Staff Writer

Vince Evans made the Raider varsity Monday.

His fellow replacements were banished to a makeshift locker room, formerly a cafeteria, in the training facility to await, um, developments, but the strikeball quarterback remained where he was, dressing alongside the returning players, and joining their practice.

Yet to be determined is whether he will actually be on the 45-man roster. Teams may keep 85 players and needn't designate the 45 they will dress until Saturday. A Raider official said that is a defensive maneuver for the clubs, in case the union should call another quickie strike.

It looks as if the Raiders, however, are leaning toward keeping Evans. There was even speculation that they planned to leave him at No. 1, until the former Chicago Bear starter went 11 for 31 and threw that game-losing interception Sunday.

"Vince will be part of our group that goes out (to practice) with the veterans, I'll put it that way," Raider Coach Tom Flores said. "Just off what we've seen, off his performance.

"We'll add him to the group of quarterbacks we already have, which is (Rusty) Hilger and (Marc) Wilson."

Is it possible that Evans will start?

"I don't think so at this point."

So Hilger will?

"That would be my initial plan at this point, yes."

Evans, 32, out of football for two years and refused even a Raider tryout until the strike, said it was "more than I bargained for, that's for sure.

"I'm happy. I'm extremely happy, but it's kind of a bittersweet situation because of (Sunday). That taste is not totally out of my mouth but by the same token, it's definitely good to be here."

Injured cornerback Lester Hayes was back at the facility Monday, after serving a five-day exile at home.

Hayes was ordered by Al Davis to go home and cool off until the strike ended after an argument last week with trainer George Anderson, part of Hayes' ongoing series of disagreements with the Raider medical staff.

"I hate to be Bogarted but that's history man," Hayes said, laughing. "They can't send me home. I built this place.

"I went to Cuba. I met Fidel Castro. I didn't like him."

Actually, he went fishing off Santa Monica.

Hayes remains on injured reserve "with eight toes of death."

Raider Notes Will Bo Jackson play this week? "I don't think so," Tom Flores said. . . . The Raiders are still deciding if they want to keep the full 85-man complement around. If they do, it will raise such questions as how are workouts to be structured. Do the squads work out separately? Together? They may compromise and keep 65.

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