Las Vegas Raiders: Zamir White steps into the spotlight if Josh Jacobs holds out

The Las Vegas Raiders second-year running back will have all eyes on him if Josh Jacobs holds out this summer.
New England Patriots v Las Vegas Raiders
New England Patriots v Las Vegas Raiders / Chris Unger/GettyImages

With the rookies scheduled to ascend on Henderson, Nevada on July 20, the 2023 Las Vegas Raiders football season is right around the corner. This will be an interesting season for the Raiders, as they are coming off a six-win season, and made a bunch of changes to the roster in hopes of putting together long-term success.

However, one change they likely did not want to make is at running back, as Josh Jacobs emerged as arguably the best player at his position group in the game last season. Jacobs ran over, and around NFL defenses all season long, putting together the best season from a Raiders running back we have seen in the last 40 years.

This offseason, despite Jacobs's herculean efforts in 2022, the team decided to place the franchise tag on him, something that could end up blowing up in their faces. Jacobs did not sign the tag, and when the July 17 deadline passed for him to ink a long-term deal with the franchise, it raised the question of whether or not he will even show up this summer.

If he does not, a second-year running back steps into the spotlight.

Raiders second-year running back will have a golden opportunity in 2023

That running back is Zamir White, who the Raiders selected in the fourth-round of the 2022 NFL Draft last year. White, known for his bruising rushing style, has the nickname "Zeus," and while he did not see the field much as a rookie, all of that could change in a big way if Jacobs continues to stay away from the franchise.

White rushed only 17 times for 70 yards last season, so there is not much of a sample size, making this summer a crucial one for him. With veterans behind him on the depth chart in Ameer Abdullah and Brandon Bolden, the team is likely to give the second-year back a long look, in hopes that he is the future if the team cannot get a deal done with Jacobs.

Interestingly enough, White is only one year younger than Jacobs.

The hope for Raiders fans is that Jacobs will be the starting running back in 2023, and White can slide in as a capable No. 2 in his second season in the NFL. If Jacobs does not return, there will be a learning curve for White, a curve that second-year head coach Josh McDaniels likely cannot afford if he hopes to keep his job.

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