The Oakland Raiders have to figure out who their feature back will be in 2019, and it could be a guy with zero NFL regular season experience.
When it comes to the 2019 Oakland Raiders, there are plenty of questions to be answered on both sides of the ball. They need an edge rusher, that is for sure, and their wide receiver group is led by an aging Jordy Nelson, and a seventh-round rookie in Marcell Ateman.
In the backfield, the team is set with Derek Carr as their quarterback for a sixth straight season, as he has the backing of new general manager Mike Mayock. However, there is no telling who the feature running back will be in 2019, so expect that question to be answered early in the offseason.
This free agency season, the Raiders have three running backs who are free agents, including Jalen Richard, Doug Martin, and Marshawn Lynch. Head coach Jon Gruden has said that he would love to have Lynch back, and Martin rushed very well for the team late in the season, closing out the year with back-to-back 100-yard games.
Richard is a guy who can do anything you need within an offense, and became one of the better pass-catching running backs in all of football last season. Realistically, all three could be back in the Silver and Black next season.
Then there is Chris Warren III, who joined the Raiders as an undrafted free agent last summer. All Warren did during the preseason was lead the NFL in rushing, showing an incredible blend of speed, and power, as he turned heads throughout the organization.
Warren was a beast during the preseason in 2018, and the hope is that it can translate over to the regular season in 2019. There is a big jump from the games that count to the games that don’t count, but Warren has the physical ability to be a dominant rusher at the NFL level.
The running back group is one that will be a major topic of conversation this offseason, as they have pending free agents, and guys in both free agency, and the draft who can help this team right away. The bottom line is, the Raiders have to add pieces around Derek Carr, and Warren certainly looked the part last summer.