Darren McFadden said prior to Week 1 that he “owes a fantastic season” to the Oakland Raiders. Other than rushing for 129 yards against the Jacksonville Jaguars during Week 2, McFadden’s start to his 2013 season hasn’t been exactly fantastic. He only rushed for 48 yards from 17 carries against the Indianapolis Colts during Week 1, then had a shockingly terrible performance against Denver running for only nine yards from 12 carries. The reason why Oakland is currently ranked third overall in rushing, averaging 148.7 yards a game, is the pleasantly surprising Terrelle Pryor who is currently the team’s leading rusher averaging 7.6 yards a carry compared to McFadden’s 3.9.
As of now, CSNBayArea.com reported Pryor will start against the Redskins while ESPN.com reported Matt Flynn will start. In other words, no one will know for certain until kickoff. If Pryor starts, the threat of him keeping the ball and running will take attention away from McFadden thus opening lanes for him. If Flynn starts, McFadden must run well to take pressure off Flynn and give him time to get rid of the ball.
No matter who starts at quarterback, McFadden has to take advantage of a matchup that is in his favor – the Redskins are currently ranked 31st in rushing yards allowed. A good running performance against the Redskins could potentially get him rolling. After Washington, Oakland faces AFC West rivals San Diego Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs in consecutive weeks – two teams whose run defenses are currently ranked 28th and 25th respectively. If ever there was a time to get out of the quicksand and turn his season around, possibly his career, now is it.