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From left, Oakland Raiders safety Tyvon Branch and punter Shane Lechler greet free safety Michael Huff on the sidelines during NFL football training camp in Napa, Calif., Sunday, July 31, 2011. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

NAPA -- The revolving door at Raiders training camp has free safety Michael Huff checking in, wide receiver Jacoby Ford out with a broken hand and tight end Zach Miller on the way.

Huff will return for his sixth season after signing a contract Sunday, terms of which were not disclosed.

Ford, one of the most pleasant surprises from last year's rookie class as a wide receiver and return specialist, will miss most if not all of the 31/2-week training camp after fracturing his left hand Saturday.

Coach Hue Jackson said Ford is expected to be ready for the start of the regular season Sept. 12 in Denver.

While no deal has been announced for Miller, the Raiders' Pro Bowl tight end and leading receiver each of the past three years, a team source said the two sides were working out the final details of a new contract.

Huff, 28, had four sacks, three interceptions and two forced fumbles last year in his best season as a Raider since he was selected No. 7 overall in the 2006 NFL draft.

His original six-year contract voided after a fifth season, and an obscure rule that prohibited players from signing contract extensions if their salary rose more than 30 percent between 2009 and 2010 prevented the Raiders from signing him at the same time they were giving new deals to cornerback Stanford Routt and defensive tackle Richard Seymour.


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Huff made $945,000 in 2009, and his salary jumped to $5.75 million in 2010.

Although free to sign with any team, Huff said he had a deal in place until it was foiled by the 30 percent rule and that he never considered going anywhere else.

There were rumors he would return to his native Texas and the Dallas Cowboys, where former Raiders coordinator Rob Ryan runs the defense.

"I'm from Dallas, so everybody put two and two together," Huff said. "The whole time I knew what was going on, and the Raiders knew what was going on. So there was really no panic on our side."

Asked if Ryan called him, Huff smiled and said, "No comment."

Ford's injury was a setback for a player who was expected to have an increased role this season in an offense that is being expanded in terms of motion and shifting under new coordinator Al Saunders.

As a rookie, Ford scored seven touchdowns, second on the team to Darren McFadden's 10, and had some of the Raiders' most electrifying plays.

A fourth-round draft pick out of Clemson, Ford had 25 receptions for 470 yards and two touchdowns, 10 rushes for 155 yards and two touchdowns and 53 kickoff returns for 1,280 yards and three touchdowns.

The three scores on returns of 101, 99 and 94 yards set the Raiders' career record and gave him the third- and fourth-longest touchdown returns in club history.

"We come out there, we don't want to get anybody hurt, but that's a part of it," Jackson said. "We'll be fine, he'll be fine, and he'll be ready for the start of the season."

The free-agent market has been curiously quiet for Miller, a four-year veteran who became an unrestricted free agent after the collective bargaining agreement was reached.

"Zach is still a free agent, and I've talked to him several times, and hopefully that situation will be resolved soon," Jackson said. "Which way it's going to go, nobody knows."

Miller has been the Raiders' most consistent offensive player over the past four years and has led the club in receiving for the past three.

Huff said: "We're trying to get him back. I talked with him this morning. We need Zach, Zach wants to be here. I hope everything gets done."

  • Rookie cornerback Chemdi Chekwa was wearing a sling on his left arm the day after injuring his shoulder during a wrap-up drill.

    Jackson had no timetable for his absence but conceded it could be at least two weeks.

  • Six players age 30 or older took the practice off -- defensive tackles Seymour and Tommy Kelly, guard Cooper Carlisle, cornerback Chris Johnson, safety Hiram Eugene and running back Rock Cartwright.

  • NFL.com reported the Raiders were negotiating with cornerback Antonio Cromartie.

  • Officials have been at four practices, and the flags were flying Sunday. Jackson said he hopes to have officials at every practice to reduce the Raiders' issues with penalties.

    "We led the league in penalties last year. That's a fact," Jackson said. "It's something we have to get better at."