Raiders coach McDaniels declares 'no desire' in trading Jacobs

·2-min read

While most established starters typically sit out the NFL's Hall of Fame Game, Las Vegas Raiders running back Josh Jacobs saw plenty of action last Thursday night.

Jacobs touched the ball on seven of the Raiders' first 12 plays – rushing five times for 30 yards and catching two passes for 14 yards – leading some to believe the team was deliberately giving him a larger workload so there would be more tape on him for a potential trade.

Las Vegas coach Josh McDaniels quashed those rumours on Monday, dismissing the idea of the team looking for a trade.

"We have a lot of confidence in J.J. And, you know, he did well with his opportunities, which we hoped he would," McDaniels said. "But no, we have no desire to do that at all."

Some of the speculation that the Raiders want to trade Jacobs stems from the fact he is entering the final year of his rookie contract after the team decided not to pick up his fifth-year option this past offseason.

He was one of the bigger names on the Raiders not to get a contract extension under the new regime led by McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler after quarterback Derek Carr, edge rusher Maxx Crosby and wide receiver Hunter Renfrow all received big paydays.

Jacobs has led the Raiders in rushing each of his first three seasons in the league with his 3,087 rushing yards ranking fifth in the NFL since his 2019 rookie season.

He is expected to be Las Vegas' starting running back again this season, though the team did draft Zamir White out of Georgia in the fourth round of April’s draft, signed veteran free agent Brandon Bolden and will get Kenyan Drake back from a broken right ankle that cut short his 2021 season.

White led the Raiders with 75 all-purpose yards in Thursday’s 27-11 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, while Drake ran five times for nine yards.

"As I said after the game, I really do believe that the backs, don't really get to simulate what's going to happen during the course of the regular season," McDaniels said. "And so, giving them an opportunity to actually get tackled, take care of the football and get acclimated to a new system, quite honestly, I think is the goal. Each man's different.

"We'll try to do what's best for the team. We felt like that was a good thing, a good opportunity for all our backs that played."