Among the many position battles being waged in Napa, the position of running back might be the fiercest of all for the Raiders. Both Michael Bush and Darren McFadden are poised to have a breakout year now that opposing defenses will actually have to respect the passing game.
But just who is going to get the bulk of the carries?
Tom Cable did his best to offer no significant insight into the running back battle royale during a Q&A session this morning.
Q: Bush and McFadden a thunder and lightning?
A: I don’t know all about the nickname stuff but I do know that they are different. They’re both having a whale of a camp thus far and they both will be very important in what we do.
Q: How do you want it to work out there, one guy gets the bulk or situational?
A: I think again we’ll get all that determined as we get down the road. It’s just too early to start putting labels or putting something to paper that says that’s how it will be. It will work itself out.
Q: But they have such different styles, can you take advantage of that?
A: Sure we can. Michael is a guy with a lot size and mass as well as quickness. But Darren is probably a little smoother, a little quicker. They’ll be maybe some things one does better than the other and maybe we’ll play it to that a little bit.
What else would you expect Cable to say just one week into camp? If this is truly an open competition then it’s safe to say that we’re a Tim Tebow’s chance of success in the NFL away from beginning to even scratch the surface on this topic.
Given the response to the fan poll here on JBB, most of Raider Nation – at least those that frequent this fine blog – believe Bush should sees the lion’s share of the rock.
One year ago, McFadden was simply handed the job. After some unimpressive showings and yet another injury, Run-DMC was grounded paving the way for Bush to push his way into the rotation. By season’s end, Bush was the leading ground gainer for the Silver and Black.
With Justin Fargas out of the picture, this truly is a two horse race. Just how “open” this competition truly is remains to be seen. Naturally, situations will dictate which back is featured more prominently. However, at some point you get the feeling that one of the two will emerge as the clear cut #1.
Get your popcorn ready, Nation. This promises to be an entertaining battle well worth the price of preseason admission.