Expectations for the Oakland Raiders this season are very low, but if there is one player who is capable of putting up amazing numbers on offense this season it is running back Darren McFadden.
McFadden has shown flashes that he is capable of being one of the top running backs in the league, but has only been able to put together on full season in which he was able to make good on that potential. McFadden has made it clear that he wants to re-sign with the Raiders and now, according to Pro Football Talk, he believes he owes the Raiders a fantastic season:
“The organization has shown tremendous faith in me, and I’m very grateful for that. I feel like it shows real faith in me and in this offense as a whole. They clearly have confidence in my ability and what I can do in a downhill running scheme. I’m so excited to be able to run in this type of offense again. I feel like I owe the Raiders a fantastic season.”
Raider fans, and the organization, would be overjoyed to see McFadden produce the type of season they envisioned when they drafted him in 2008. The downhill running scheme that he spoke of fits him perfectly, but the odds will be severely stacked against him.
Not only is the Raiders best offensive lineman, Jared Veldheer, out for at least half of the season, but his replacement, rookie Menelik Watson, hurt his knee in practice leading the Raiders to turn to Khalif Barnes to fill in at left tackle.
Additionally, the Raiders quarterback situation is a complete question mark. While Pryor is expected to start in Week 1, some in the organization believe undrafted rookie Matt McGloin gives the team a better chance to win this season.
Regardless of who the QB is, teams will be sure to stack the box to stop McFadden and force the QB to beat them so if McFadden does produce this fantastic season, he will have earned it.