Should the Oakland Raiders Trade for Adrian Peterson?

Through 10 games of the 2014 season, the Oakland Raiders were averaging 63 rushing yards per game—the fourth worst start for a rushing offense since the merger. Had the pace continued, the Raiders would have finished with the worst 16-game rushing season in NFL history.

It’s easy to see why the Raiders are one of the teams in play to trade for Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, as Bleacher Report’s Mike Freeman first reported. The Raiders need difference-makers like Peterson on the field, so although they may be “on the outskirts” of the chase, it makes a lot of sense for them to hang around to see if the price drops or the other suitors get cold feet.

Otherwise, the Raiders should avoid the kind of expensive quick fixes that have set the franchise back since their last Super Bowl appearance in 2002. The Raiders traded first-round picks for defensive tackle Richard Seymour and quarterback Carson Palmer in recent years and their limited success proved short-lived. 

There’s a lot more that goes into deciding to trade for Peterson than his value on the field next season, which used to be all the organization was concerned about. Cost in trade, cost in cap dollars, future value, team dynamics and in this case, public relations, have to be considered before making such a bold trade.

Peterson is arguably the best running back to play the game since Barry Sanders, so he would give Oakland’s rushing offense an instant lift in 2015 that they need. Beyond that, Peterson would provide the Raiders with a fraction of the value a top draft choice would be able to provide.


The Need

The only incumbent running back in Oakland is Latavius Murray, who rushed for 112 yards in Week 11 and is directly responsible for helping the Raiders avoid one of the worst rushing seasons in NFL history. Despite this, the Raiders don’...

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