HENDERSON, Nev. – First-year Las Vegas Raiders coach Josh McDaniels on Monday ended speculation that former Pro Bowl running back Josh Jacobs was being presented for a possible trade by playing so many snaps in the preseason opener.
“We have great confidence in JJ,” said McDaniels. “And you know, he made good use of his opportunities, which is what we were hoping for.
“But no, we don’t want to do that at all.”
Jacobs, who didn’t get his fifth-year option from Las Vegas’ new regime of McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler, had five carries, gained 30 yards and caught two passes for 14 yards total in the Raiders’ 27-11 Hall of Fame Fame Game win over the Jacksonville Jaguars last week.
And while speculation swirled around Jacobs over the weekend, he wasn’t the only alleged offensive starter enjoying significant playing time in Canton, Ohio. Because while quarterback Derek Carr and receivers Davante Adams and Hunter Renfrow watched but sat, four of the five starters on the offensive line were in — center Andre James played three series — and four other running backs saw action.
Rookie Zamir White led Las Vegas with 75 all-purpose yards (52 yards with 11 carries and three catches for 23 yards), while Austin Walter rushed for 49 yards and a touchdown with eight carries and caught a pass for 3 yards. Kenyan Drake, returning from a broken right ankle, had a 9-yard rushing on five carries, and Ameer Abdullah had an 8-yard TD run and caught two passes for 23 yards.
“As I said after the game, I really think the defenders…can’t really simulate what’s going to happen over the course of the regular season,” McDaniels said. “And so the aim is to give them the opportunity to actually be attacked, to take care of the football and to get used to a new system, quite honestly I think that’s the aim. Every man is different.
“We’ll try to do what’s best for the team. We thought it was a good thing, a good opportunity for all our defenders who played.”
Earlier in the camp, Jacobs said he had no ill will towards the organization after they decided not to exercise his option and instead let him play out the contract that season.
Jacobs, who missed most of the offseason program with an undisclosed injury, seemed motivated and quicker at camp.
“I have a strong belief that the work you put in is going to pay off, and I had to be here either way,” Jacobs said at the time. “And that’s where I want to be. I had no problem with that. It just gave me more reason to come in every day and meet and work with the guys.”
https://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/34369748/las-vegas-raiders-coach-josh-mcdaniels-ends-speculation-potential-josh-jacobs-trade Las Vegas Raiders coach Josh McDaniels ends speculation over potential Josh Jacobs trade