Raiders running back Josh Jacobs is demolishing enemy defenses, The team might want to do something about his contract status.
Before the 2022 season, the Las Vegas Raiders decided to pass on exercising the fifth-year options on any of their three first-round picks in the 2019 draft. Understandable in the cases of edge-rusher Clelin Ferrell and safety Johnathan Abram, as Ferrell and Abraham have not produced to their draft status. But running back Josh Jacobs has been a plus starter through most of his career, and that was even true when Jon Gruden was calling the plays and establishing the overall culture, and Tom Cable was in charge of the offensive line.
If you can succeed under those circumstances, odds are, you’re a pretty good player.
Jacobs, who we ranked as the NFL’s eighth-best running back before the season started, absolutely is. Even in a disastrous 2021 season for the Raiders, Jacobs carried the ball 230 times for 955 yards and nine touchdowns. 683 of his rushing yards came after contact, he forced 60 missed tackles (third in the NFL behind Jonathan Taylor and Javonte Williams), and he had eight carries of 15 or more yards for 169 total yards.
At the 2022 scouting combine, new Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels was asked about Jacobs’ future.
The Raiders would have been smart to seal Jacobs’ future before the season, because at this rate, the Alabama alum is going to cost come team more scratch this offseason than McDaniels’ team would have had to pay before the season began.
Especially as the season has progressed, Jacobs has been a true force multiplier in McDaniels’ offense. To a historic degree, in fact. Jacobs riddled the Broncos and Chiefs in Weeks 4 and 5, respectively, with 28 carries for 143 yards and two touchdowns against the Broncos, and 21 carries for 154 yards and another touchdown against the Chiefs.
In Lax Vegas’ 38-20 Sunday win, coming off their bye, Jacobs ran 20 times for 143 yards and three more scores.
With all that, Jacobs attached his name to recent NFL history, and all-time Raiders history.
Unless the Raiders re-sign Jacobs or give him the franchise tag, they’ll have a lot to replace in their offense.