In 2008, deceased Oakland Raiders’ owner Al Davis had just endured his fifth straight losing season. That was due in large part to Davis missing on every first-round pick after Nnamdi Asomugha in 2003 to that point, including colossal bust Jamarcus Russell in 2007. So Davis had another Top-10 pick and needed a lightning rod to help turn things around.
So he selected Darren McFadden out of Arkansas with the No. 8 overall pick, figuring his speed out of the backfield would change games. In Week 2 of his rookie season, he showed that he change games with 161 yards, a touchdown and a few big runs against the Kansas City Chiefs. It appeared that Davis had his man then but McFadden hasn’t played 16 games in his six years in the NFL with a slew of injuries.
His rookie contract ran out at the end of last year and he surprisingly ended up back with the Raiders this year. And now that he is still there, I expect McFadden to make it count and produce up to the level of his immense talent. Like I said in my last article, I’m going out on a toothpick-thin limb and saying he will finally stay healthy and get it done for the Raiders in 2014.
His time has come!
Turn the page to see how and why.