The Oakland Raiders lack clear depth at the running back position, and with the question marks surrounding Latavius Murray’s ability to be a bell-cow in Bill Musgrave’s system and Oakland’s 28th ranked rushing offense in 2015, targeting a physical specimen like Ohio State’s Ezekiel Elliott almost makes too much sense.
Elliott, a two-year starter with the Buckeyes, is a three-down running back that is capable of making an impact both as a runner and in the passing game. On top of having excellent vision out of the backfield, Elliott can be elusive in the open field and is physical enough to lower his shoulder to finish runs consistently. At 6’0”, 225 pounds, Elliot has the ideal size and athleticism to carry the load for any offense at the NFL level.
Though drafting a running back in the top-end of the first-round has been unquestionably frowned upon by analysts and various GM’s around the league, NFL Network Analyst Mike Mayock wouldn’t be surprised if the former Buckeye comes off the board Day 1.
With Oakland, Elliot could ease his transition to the NFL by sharing touches with Murray during his rookie campaign, and if he manages to meet expectations, he would have the opportunity to assert himself into a premier role with Murray’s contract expiring in 2016.
Whether or not he is taking a majority of the snaps in year one, inserting Elliott behind the offensive line Oakland has built this offseason would only produce positive results.