Raiders Make Bold Final Decision on Josh Jacobs: Report

josh jacobs

Getty Las Vegas Raiders RB Josh Jacobs.

One of the major moves the Las Vegas Raiders made last offseason was using the franchise tag on running back Josh Jacobs. He was coming off a 2022 season where he led the NFL with 1,652 rushing yards.

The Raiders face another decision on Jacobs this offseason but he’s coming off his worst season yet and only rushed for 805 yards. With that in mind, the team is not planning to use the franchise tag on him again, per a February 26 X post from ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Schefter did note that the Raiders are going to try and work on re-signing the star running back but they will likely let him test free agency. The team would’ve had to give Jacobs $14.1 million guaranteed for 2024 if they were to franchise tag him again.

That’s a huge cap hit for a running back and new Raiders general manager Tom Telesco clearly isn’t interested in paying that price. Jacobs will now be able to choose what he wants to do. He’s expressed interest in staying in Las Vegas but he’s never been able to test free agency before. If he gets a big offer from another team, it’s on the table that he plays elsewhere in 2024.

What’s Josh Jacobs Going to Cost?

The running back market is in an interesting place right now. Last offseason, teams chose to franchise tag their running backs over giving them big contracts. This offseason, teams appear willing to let their running backs test the market.

This could be a very telling offseason for how running backs are going to get paid going forward. Josh Jacobs isn’t likely to get close to the $16 million a season Christian McCaffrey is making. It’s hard to imagine a team paying Jacobs more than $12 million a season.

That’s a reasonable price for a top running back but Jacobs is coming off a down year. He could be looking at closer to $10 million a season. That’s much less than top wide receivers and tight ends are making these days but that’s the state of the market. There will be a much better idea of what the going rates for running back contracts will be going forward after this offseason.

Should Las Vegas Raiders Re-Sign Josh Jacobs?

Josh Jacobs was a first-round pick of the Raiders and has meant a lot to the franchise. He’s rushed for over 1,000 yards in three of five seasons and has never rushed for fewer than 800 yards. He’s also been a team captain and a respected member of the locker room.

Jacobs is likely more valuable to the Raiders than other teams. The problem facing him is that Zamir White played really well for Las Vegas when Jacobs was injured and is still on a rookie contract. Why pay Jacobs $10+ million a year if White can give similar production at a fraction of the price?

It’s hard to see the Raiders signing Jacobs for anything more than $12 million a season. That won’t put him as the highest-paid running back in the league but it would put him in the upper echelon. Jacobs may be able to make more elsewhere but he has to weigh whether or not he wants to make a big change after five years with the Raiders.

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