Tony Sparano Explains Lack of Carries for Marcel Reece


Marcel Reece was a huge factor in the Oakland Raiders lone game winning drive of the season, stepping into a running back role with Latavius Murray out with a concussion and grinding out important yards in rookie quarterback Derek Carr’s late game drive that finished with a touchdown pass to give the Raiders their first win of the season against the Kansas City Chiefs. After that impressive fourth quarter running performance from Reece it was expected that the hybrid fullback would get more carries against the St. Louis Rams, but that didn’t come to fruition as Reece didn’t see the touches that interim head coach Tony Sparano mentioned in the lead up to the game he wanted to see.

Reece only had four carries on Sunday in the loss, one less than Maurice Jones-Drew (although in fairness MJD had his best game as a Raider and busted out a 13 yard run) and six less than feature back Darren McFadden. On Monday, Sparano explained the lack of touches by mentioning that a concussion to the backup tight end as the excuse for a lack of using Reece as a running back as more blocking duties needed to go to the fullback. Although Jamize Olawale does technically exist.

It was disappointing to see a lack of Reece at running back, but the entire offense as a whole was poor on Sunday. It is pretty much impossible to say that Reece getting more touches would have changed much, but the fact is that it is another case of the Raiders coaching staff failing to accomplish something they had mentioned was a focus of the team. Whether that was genuine or not is up for debate, but the Raiders lack of giving Reece more touches after he showed promise the game before is another reminder that the current coaching staff in place is just not up to the task going forward. Which is exactly why there will be wholesale changes around the Raiders come the offseason.