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Holmes to practice Wed. for first time since '05, could play vs. Raiders

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Running back Priest Holmes will practice
Wednesday for the first time since a severe 2005 head and neck
injury.

Chiefs coach Herm Edwards repeated Tuesday there's a chance
Holmes could play at Oakland.

The Chiefs traded backup running back Michael Bennett to Tampa
Bay for draft picks on Tuesday, creating a spot behind starter
Larry Johnson and adding to speculation they might activate Holmes
in time for Sunday's game against the Raiders.

Holmes "will put the pads on. He will put the helmet on.
Whether he participates in the [Oakland] game or not, we'll see how
practice goes," Edwards said.

Holmes sustained neck and spinal injuries in a game at San Diego
on Oct. 30, 2005, when he was hit by Shawne Merriman. He was placed
on the physically unable to perform list and stayed there until he
showed up at training camp in River Falls, Wis., claiming he'd seen
himself playing football in a dream.

The three-time Pro Bowler, who turned 34 this month, appears to
have lost about 10 pounds since July and looks fit.

Holmes is eligible to come off the inactive list this week, and
the Chiefs have 21 days beginning Wednesday to either activate
Holmes, place him on injured reserve or waive him.

Chiefs president Carl Peterson said he expects Holmes to be
activated sooner rather than later.

"My sense right now is that he will be ready to go," Peterson
said. "I've said a thousand times, those people who question
Priest Holmes are very foolish. Throughout his entire career, he's
always come back. When he called me last spring shortly before
training camp and told me he would like to do this one more time, I
felt that I owed him that opportunity."

When Holmes was healthy he was one of the most productive
running backs in the NFL. He owns 18 Chiefs single-game and career
records, including career marks for yards rushing (5,933), total
touchdowns (83) and TDs rushing (76).

Edwards said it won't be long before he knows whether Holmes is
ready.

"If he can go out there and practice pretty well, and feels OK
after practice, that's good for us and for him. We'll know this
week," Edwards said. "It's been three months. Either he's ready
to go or he's not. Another week won't make much of a difference.
He's prepared. He's been mentally into it. He's working his tail
off.

"For a guy his age to go through what he's gone through over
the last three months, you have to take your hat off to the guy."