Oakland Raiders Still In DeMarco Murray Race Despite Helu Signing


When versatile running back Roy Helu Jr. signed with the Oakland Raiders on Tuesday night there was a brief thought that the addition of the former Washington rusher would mean that general manager Reggie McKenzie would be stepping away from the race for Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray altogether.

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After all the team’s backfield could appear to be set with Latavius Murray along with the hybrid back that is Marcel Reece being joined by Helu. With plenty of talent available in the 2015 NFL Draft you couldn’t blame the Raiders for sitting back and waiting until the mid-rounds to find a young prospect to add to a mix that already looked better than last year’s version with Helu being added into the rotation in place of Darren McFadden. All factors that would make it understandable to bow out of the high priced chase for Murray despite the Cowboys running backs considerable talents that he would bring to the table.

However according to reports in the wake of Helu’s signing, McKenzie and the Raiders aren’t giving up on the idea of bringing in the best rusher in the NFL last season to Oakland in order to add further playmakers on offense for the young Derek Carr at quarterback. Helu’s signing having no impact on the idea of taking one of the most dominant offensive players in the league last season and adding him to the Raiders plans should Murray decide that he could envision himself playing in Oakland.

Murray’s top landing spots are presently Jacksonville or Oakland should the running back decide to get more money by leaving the Cowboys, who are trying their best to not pay above market value for their running back after franchise tagging Dez Bryant. Needing to make a longterm deal with Bryant after the 2015 season, the Cowboys are running the risk of a team with the cap space of the Raiders swooping in and paying Murray big money to bolster their roster which would leave Dallas without the workhorse that arguably was the catalyst of their successful run to a NFC East title this past season.

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Because of the Cowboys winning success in 2014, there is a very good chance that Murray shows loyalty to Dallas by staying and trying to make a run at the Super Bowl. However as a running back Murray knows the opportunity to cash in for his talent along with his hard work may only come once, so the highest bidder may have the chance to steal him away from Jerryworld and the bright lights of playing for the Cowboys.

Expect this story to be one that is monitored very closely throughout Wednesday as all teams involved appear to be pushing hard for Murray, the only running back in 2015 NFL Free Agency that appears to have a real market interest. Because of that Murray should get paid well wherever he lands, where he lands is still up for debate, but the star running back is set to make the most out of what is the highest market for any running back who has hit free agency in the past few years. Oakland appear to be undeterred by that market and could pay Murray a salary that would satisfy their desires to land a big name in early March. Stay tuned.

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