For the second straight season, Oakland Raiders running back Darren McFadden has gotten off to an awful start. McFadden was wholly ineffective against the Colts as he rushed for 48 yards on 17 carries. While most observers would brush off McFadden’s performance as one bad game, ask yourself when was the last time McFadden had a memorable performance. We can no longer blame McFadden’s mediocre play on Greg Knapp and the zone blocking scheme. I know the Raiders offensive line is in shambles but if Pryor could rush for 100 yards against an average Colts defense, McFadden should at least get more than 3 yards per carry.
Last season, McFadden was outplayed by backup running back Mike Goodson, who is now a third stringer with the New York Jets. It would be hard to fathom seeing general manager Reggie McKenzie resigning McFadden after his contract expires this year. Now that Terrelle Pryor has emerged as the starting quarterback for the foreseeable future, the Raiders must find a running back that can carry the ball 20-25 times a game without slowing down. At this point of his career it is hard to see McFadden being that type of running back for the Raiders.
After this year, it might be time for the Raiders and McFadden to go their separate ways. Rookie running back Latavius Murray looked like he could be a potential replacement for McFadden, but Murray succumbed to a season ending injury during training camp. Now that the Raiders will have all of their top draft picks at their disposal, expect McKenzie to at least consider drafting a big time running back in the first two rounds. I really hope I am totally off-base on Darren McFadden’s declining skills but I just don’t see the same explosive Darren McFadden that I saw a few years ago. McFadden might have plenty left in his tank but he does not seem like a good fit for the Oakland Raiders.