Rookie running back Zamir White impressed the Raiders in Thursday night’s Hall of Fame game, but his solid outing wasn’t the only notable development in the offensive backfield.
Josh Jacobs started and played the first two sets despite a weather delay and the absence of other first stringers like Derek Carr, Davante Adams and Darren Waller. He ran five times for 30 yards and caught a few passes before head coach Josh McDaniels explained why the veteran was in the lineup.
“I still think it’s good for the backs to carry the ball in pre-season,” McDaniels said, via Tashan Reed of TheAthletic.com. “A lot of things happen when you get tackled and hit that you can’t fake in practice. I think all of our guys had the ball tonight; all of our guys caught it or got the ball and had to get tackled. We can’t really simulate that or represent that in practice.
The Raiders have declined Jacobs’ option for 2023, making it clear they are unconvinced of his long-term future in their offense. Playing Thursday night with White, Kenyan Drake, Ameer Abdullah and Austin Walter suggest they are still setting up a short-term pecking order as Jacobs would likely have been excused if he was the clear point guard.