Darren McFadden is actually on track to play Week 16 against the Chargers on the road. This is a bit of a surprise after he was being considered for the season-ending IR, which could have effectively ended his career with the Raiders. Between his hamstring and his ankle injuries, McFadden only ran the ball 103 times for 365 yards in 8 games.
Since the fortunate emergence of running back Rashad Jennings, the Raiders don’t need to put all their eggs in the McFadden basket. If McFadden plays during Week 16, it will only be to back up Jennings.
So who will invest in McFadden if the Raiders give up on him? Certainly a few teams need a steady running back, but McFadden is anything but that. In his 6 year career, he averages only 10.8 games played a season. With younger, faster and more durable running backs always at the NFL’s disposal, there might not be a team willing to take a chance on McFadden.
Unfortunately for the Oakland Raiders, the odds were never quite in their favor during the 2013 season. They’re stuck in the dominant AFC West with the Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs and the resurgent San Diego Chargers. There was never much stability in the quarterback position between Terrelle Pryor and Matt McGloin. And running back Darren McFadden lived up to his notorious injury-prone reputation.
The Raiders are in a massive drought. They haven’t made the playoffs in 10 seasons. Occasionally, we see a Raiders team that we think can do it. But they usually find a way to self-destruct before anything comes to fruition. This season showed some promise before it began and McFadden would be the one to lead them. In keeping with Raider tradition however, that hope was quickly derailed.