The Las Vegas Raiders came back to earth on Sunday after a 23-16 loss to the New York Giants. The team is now 2-3 in its last five games and things aren’t going to get any easier. The offense has been mostly solid this season but one-dimensional. Las Vegas is second in the NFL in passing yards a game but 27th in rushing yards per game.
Much of the struggles on the ground have been due to Josh Jacobs dealing with injury issues all season. He’s missed two full games and was limited in another two. At the start of the Giants game, it looked like Jacobs was back but he clearly got dinged up and was less effective as the game went on. He ended the game with 13 carries for 76 yards. Kenyan Drake and Jalen Richard are great receiving running backs but aren’t the most consistent runners. Brent Sobleski of Bleacher Report believes the Raiders should bring in Todd Gurley in case Jacobs suffers any further injuries:
Lead back Josh Jacobs has been dinged up throughout the season, and he seemingly wasn’t happy about the coaching staff saying he suffered a chest injury against the Philadelphia Eagles. Kenyan Drake started to come on as of late after a slow start to the season, while Peyton Barber hasn’t played since Week 4.
Gurley can be an insurance policy for the Raiders, who rank among the bottom five in overall rushing yardage and yards per carry. He might not single-handedly fix their ground game, but he can help.
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Does Gurley Have Anything Left in the Tank?
Gurley had one of the quickest falls from grace in recent NFL history. He had an incredible run with the Los Angeles Rams between 2015 and 2018. In those four seasons, he rushed for 4,547 yards and made the Pro Bowl three times. However, his productivity went way down after it was revealed that he has arthritis in his knee.
The Rams just outright released him after the 2019 season and he only lasted one season with the Atlanta Falcons, rushing for just 678 yards in 15 games. Gurley has remained a free agent all season despite teams having major needs at running back. He’s only 27-years-old but it’s clear that teams still question if his knee has fully healed.
Raiders Won’t Sign Gurley
If it wasn’t for the knee issues, Gurley would likely already be on a team. The fact that no team has even brought him on to a practice squad is quite telling. For the Raiders, it’s hard to believe that they’d be interested in Gurley.
Jacobs has been banged up but remains as tough as they come. Peyton Barber is still on the roster and he showed the Raiders some promising signs earlier in the season when Jacobs was out. They haven’t used him in recent weeks but he remains the insurance policy for Jacobs. At this point in his career, it’s unlikely that Gurley would be an upgrade over Barber. The Raiders have other needs and will address those before thinking about running back.