Raiders RB Josh Jacobs

Zamir White, Brittain Brown Making Most Of Absence By Josh Jacobs, More RB Reinforcements On The Way

While the Las Vegas Raiders continue their OTAs, preparing for the upcoming season, one notable absentee is Josh Jacobs. The All-Pro running back has yet to sign his franchise tender, but unless there’s a move made by team brass, Jacobs will eventually return. When he does, he’s obviously RB1. However, in his stead, those behind Jacobs in the depths are making the most of it. Also, it appears that we can add another name to the hat in the running back’s room.

While speaking to the media this week, offensive coordinator Mick Lombardi spoke about the state of the running back position. Yes, Jacobs has yet to participate, but that doesn’t mean the coaches stop developing those behind Jacobs—most notably, Zamir White and Brittain Brown.

The show goes on with or without Josh Jacobs…

As rookies last season, neither player made an impact. In fact, only White saw snaps in the regular season, which totaled 17. Nonetheless, given the history behind head coach Josh McDaniels’ usage of running backs, it was only a matter of time before both got their shots. Lombardi spoke to this, mentioning that the duo is getting plenty of reps at the moment.

“I think there hasn’t been a greater opportunity than the one in the running back room for those young players like Zamir [White] and Brittain [Brown]. So, they’ve gotten a lot of reps, they’ve gotten a lot of exposure, and they’ve learned a lot, so there’s no hiding anymore. There are a lot of reps that they get that maybe Josh would have had or somebody else would have had, but they’re getting them, which is great for them.”

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As Lombardi went on to mention as well, both White and Brown “need to learn how to fail to succeed.” It’s not an optimal situation from the standpoint of not having your second-best offensive player missing, but the show goes on. Also, Jacobs proved that he didn’t need a committee, as many had predicted would happen with McDaniels calling the shots. However, the Raiders coaching staff wouldn’t be doing their jobs if said committee wasn’t prepared for the alternative.

Another addition for the Raiders this year will be Sincere McCormick. As an undrafted rookie who joined after the NFL Draft last year, McCormick went down with an injury, keeping him from showing Raider Nation what he was capable of. Luckily, an impressive showing at the combine gave fans a taste, especially his remarkable speed. A back-to-back Offensive Player of the Year in the CUSA from 2020 to 2021, McCormick could soon be vying for snaps during training camp as well.

Coach Lombardi shared his thoughts on early observations from the former Texas-San Antonio product.

“Anytime a player obviously gets an injury like that where they’re out a long time, you hope they come back and hope they can perform the way they want to perform. And I think Sincere [McCormick] has not only done that, but he’s done a great job of just learning the playbook and coming out there, and then, like I talked about Brittain [Brown] and Zamir [White], he’s gotten some reps too, probably reps he wouldn’t have gotten as a rookie before.”

Better safe than sorry, right?

Things could get interesting this summer. If there’s one thing we’ve learned in the NFL, it’s that running backs go down all the time. With a war chest full of possibilities with this young trio, a committee might be the best way to keep Jacobs fresh.

*Top Photo: Sam Morris/Getty Images

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