Latavius Murray 2015 Predictions

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Dec 28, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Oakland Raiders running back Latavius Murray (28) runs the ball in the third quarter against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Broncos defeated the Raiders 47-14. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Breakout Year for Murray

I think 2015 will be a breakout season for Murray. Reports from Raider camp is that the starting job is Murray’s to lose. Trent Richardson may surprise people with a strong showing during training camp, but as it stands its looking like Murray will be the man in the backfield.

From a versatility standpoint, Murray taking a bulk of the snaps makes sense. He’s the most explosive, dynamic running back on the team. Richardson and Helu Jr. have complimentary skill sets to Murray, but that is all to play behind the young running back not to take the workload away from him. Richardson is an elite pass blocker at the running back position, while Helu Jr. is a great receiving option out of the back field as complimentary pieces who will only help Murray do more damage this season even if they could take a portion of the snaps themselves.

Further new Offensive Coordinator, Bill Musgrave, is known for getting great performances out of running backs. His traditional offenses have been power run based, who control the clock by giving their running backs a ton of touches to chip away yards and wear down defenses to open up the passing game down the stretch. The new system the coaching staff has implemented will have that, along with the up tempo style of Musgrave’s previous head coach, Chip Kelly.

Again, running the ball is the focal point of this offense set as well. Murray should get plenty of touches this season to give him every opportunity to prove he has the ability to be a great running back in this league.

The front office has made blocking a huge emphasis this off season, from free agency acquisitions to the draft, the blocking talent on the Raider’s offense has increased greatly. Not just on the offensive line, rookie tight end, Clive Walford is proving to be a true double threat tight end with a solid blocking skills in the run game.

As I mentioned earlier, Richardson is a solid blocking option as well as Marcel Reece. Of course, Reece has been a on the Raiders for quite some time, how can he be a “new” blocking option? Well, reports have been coming out that Reece is going to be use dmore like an H-Back this season, so maybe not a new player, but certainly a new use of a player. The H-Back isn’t something many Raider fans are familiar with, it’s essentially a tight end, but lines up a little farther off the line of scrimmage.

All of this adds up to some pretty stout run blocking in front of Murray which will help the running back become a known commodity around the league in his third season with the Raiders.

Here’s my predictions for Latavius Murray in 2015.

  • Rushing Attempts: 320
  • YPC: 4
  • Rushing Yards: 1300
  • Rushing Touchdowns: 10

With the kind of team the Raiders have put together, the potential Murray has shown, and the schemes the coaches are looking at using, I think this should be a great year for Murray. What do you think? Let us know in the comments section.