Fans of the Oakland Raiders certainly don’t have many fond memories of former Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson. The former NFL MVP was unstoppable in his early years as a Charger. He made headlines against the Raiders in 2005 when he became one of the only players in NFL history to score a receiving, rushing and passing touchdown in a game.
Not only that, he frequently would torch the Raiders every time he played them. However, the former Raider rival had an exciting prediction for the newest Raider running back.
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LaDainian Tomlinson Has Lofty Prediction for Raiders’ Josh Jacobs
Since he retired from the NFL, Tomlinson has been spending his days as an analyst for NFL Network. He recently was on NFL Total Access and heaped praise upon the rookie running back for the Raiders Josh Jacobs and predicted he’d win offensive rookie of the year:
For me, I’m going to say Josh Jacobs [will win offensive rookie of the year] because he’s going to have the opportunities to do so. There’s nobody in that backfield, and he can do it all. Remember what Jon Gruden did with Cadillac Williams his first two years? Cadillac had 300 touches and then followed it up with over 250 touches. Josh will get those same types of opportunities.
Tomlinson also noted how versatile Jacobs is as a receiver, runner and blocker. There’s been no lack of hype concerning Josh Jacobs since he was drafted by the Raiders. He’s already had movie producers trying to buy the rights to his story and fantasy experts are predicting he’ll be a top-10 running back.
If anybody knows running backs, it’s LaDainian Tomlinson. Raiders fans have spent years hating Tomlinson, but he’s finally said something that they can get excited about. The Raiders haven’t had a consistent running back in a long time. If the hype is to be believed, Jacobs could finally solidify that position for the silver and black.
Lack of Contract Could Result in Holdout
In other news, Josh Jacobs remains to be the only Raiders rookie that is unsigned. The reasoning for him being unsigned isn’t totally clear, but it seems to be because of a disagreement about guaranteed money. Vic Tafur from The Athletic reports that the lack of a contract could lead to a holdout.
This would cause Jacobs to be absent from HBO’s Hard Knocks which would add to the drama and would be bad optics for the Raiders. Considering that there is a rookie wage scale, it doesn’t seem to make sense why the Raiders would be stingy right now. Jacobs isn’t going to make a boatload of money. There may be some apprehension to give him too much-guaranteed money because of how often running backs get injured and Jacobs had a small workload when at Alabama.
His workload will be significantly heavier in Oakland and it’s unknown how his body will react to the greater wear and tear. It could also be inexperience on new general manager Mike Mayock’s part. This is his first year as a general manager and he could just be playing this situation poorly. Regardless, it would be pertinent for both sides to come to an agreement soon because the team needs Jacobs to be at top form when the season comes around.