Latavius Murray Ready, Deserving to Replace Darren McFadden in Oakland

The Oakland Raiders are finally ready to part ways with running back Darren McFadden, who has been a below-average running back since 2011. McFadden hasn’t had a decent season since he returned from a Lisfranc injury in his foot and the team fired Hue Jackson.

Ready to take the reins as Oakland’s top running back is Latavius Murray, who nearly outrushed McFadden last year on about half the carries and did match his touchdown total. Turning to Murray was long overdue last season when the Raiders’ running game was anemic, but now it makes even more sense.

Murray is a big, explosive running back who impressed in limited carries last season. McFadden went over 1,000 career carries last season, has never been particularly good in pass protection and is coming off the first healthy season of his career.

The needle is clearly pointing in two different directions when it comes to Murray and McFadden’s future outlook. There’s just not a lot of value in bringing McFadden back at any cost based on his production. Murray is worth a look as the team’s top back in 2015, but the Raiders can easily pencil him in as part of two-back system.

Head coach Jack Del Rio said via Eddie Paskal of

I think he’s shown enough of the traits to make him a candidate to be that guy. I don’t know that he’s earned that, yet. I think he’s shown that there’s potential there and we’re excited about working with him and developing him to his fullest, and having him compete.

The Raiders haven't had "that guy" since McFadden was lighting it up, so even having a guy with that kind of potential is exciting. When McFadden was good, the Raiders were able to go 8-8 in back-to-back years—their best finishes since 2002. 


Missing McFadden

Despite looking like his speedy self in practice, McFadde...

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