If the Denver Broncos are going to put a stop to a string of bad games against the run, they’ll have to do it without two of their most important tacklers: T.J. Ward and Derek Wolfe.

Both were ruled out of Sunday’s season finale with Oakland the team announced Friday.

Ward is in concussion protocol, and missed the Christmas Night game against Kansas City – a game that saw the Chiefs run for 238 yards, Denver’s highest total allowed in three years. Wolfe is out with a neck injury suffered in the Kansas City game.

Denver already ruled DeMarcus Ware out for the game when they placed him on season-ending IR on Wednesday. Inside linebacker Brandon Marshall, who also missed the Kansas City game, is questionable with a hamstring.

Despite playing the safety position, Ward is second in total tackles for Denver (87) and ranks first in solo tackles (69). This year he’s played a more aggressive role in the box to help counteract the loss of DE Malik Jackson and ILB Danny Trevathan. Ward has also beed solid in pass defense, recording eight passes defended and an interception. He has three forced fumbles and a pair of fumble recoveries.

Wolfe has posted career numbers in tackles and solo tackles this season. He was a half-sack shy of tying a career mark of six.

A pair of rookies will pick up Ward and Wolfe’s primary responsibilities in their absence. Justin Simmons recorded five tackles (four solo), two passes defended and had a 38-yard interception return last week in place of Ward. Adam Gotsis spelled Wolfe when he was sidelined mid-game last week, assisting on one tackle.

Against Oakland in Week 9, Ward was one of three Broncos to record eight solo tackles in the game. Wolfe had just two tackles (one solo) in the game before he suffered a hairline fracture of his right elbow in the loss. He missed the next game against New Orleans before returning after the bye week.

With Derek Carr out for the season and Matt McGloin in at quarterback, Raiders running back Latavius Murray will have the opportunity to improve on his 20-carry, 114-yard, three-touchdown performance against Denver, as the Raiders are expected to rely heavily on the running game in McGloin’s first start since 2013. Without Ward and Wolfe, that will be a very tough task for Denver.