Analyst Believes Raiders Should Trade Star Offensive Player Due to Rough Start

josh mcdaniels

Getty Josh McDaniels hugging Dave Ziegler.

The Las Vegas Raiders have gotten off to a highly disappointing 1-4 start this season but it hasn’t been due to Josh Jacobs. The former Pro Bowl running back has been arguably the team’s best offensive player through five games. He’s third in the NFL with 490 rushing yards and has set career-high marks in back-to-back games.

Jacobs is healthy right now and running with a purpose after the Raiders declined his fifth-year option in the offseason. He’ll be a free agent once the season is over and if he keeps playing at a high level, he’ll see a handsome payday. Las Vegas drafted Zamir White to eventually be Jacobs’ replacement and general manager Dave Ziegler comes from a place that never paid running backs good money. If the Raiders have no intention of giving Jacobs a new contract in the offseason and they continue to be out of the playoff race, Sosa Kremenjas of Underdog Fantasy believes the team needs to trade the running back.

The Raiders aren’t fully out of the playoff race and shouldn’t even consider sending away Jacobs yet. However, the November 1 trade deadline is nearing. If Las Vegas loses to the Houston Texans at home in Week 7, it might be time to start thinking about next season. Trying to get some value in return for Jacobs before he leaves in free agency isn’t the worst idea if the team doesn’t think the playoffs are realistic this year.

What Could Raiders Get for Jacobs in a Trade?

Running backs have lost value in the NFL over the years. The position rarely gets looked at in the first round of the draft and free agents don’t get paid nearly as much as other skill players. That likely means that Jacobs doesn’t have huge value in a possible trade. His contract situation and history with injuries would likely further diminish his value.

That said, a team could get desperate in the coming weeks. There are teams that rely heavily on their running backs. The Cleveland Browns, San Francisco 49ers and New York Giants are just a few that need good running back play to keep the offense moving. If an injury were to occur to the starting running back of a run-heavy team, they might be willing to give up more in a trade to get a player like Jacobs. Even in that scenario, the best the Raiders could do is likely a third-round pick.

Raiders Won’t Trade Jacobs

The Raiders have gotten off to a terrible start this season but there’s still hope they can turn things around. Every loss they’ve suffered has been by one score. The team is a few plays away from being 5-0 instead of 1-4. A big reason the Raiders have been close is thanks to Jacobs.

There was talk that the team could trade the running back after he played in their first preseason game but nothing came of that. Head coach Josh McDaniels has now been able to see just how good Jacobs can be. That’s been clear in the gameplanning as Jacobs has 49 carries over the last two games when he only had 42 through the first three games. If the team hopes to turn things around and make a playoff push, Jacobs is going to be one of the most important players.

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