The Raiders drafted Josh Jacobs at No. 24 overall this year and immediately slotted him into the start spot, so he’ll certainly have a chance to make an immediate impact.
LaDainian Tomlinson expects it to be overwhelmingly positive. The Pro Football Hall of Fame running back said so this week on NFL Network, predicting Jacobs would win offensive rookie of the year honors.
“I think he’s going to have the opportunities to do so,” Tomlinson said on NFLN’s “Total Access.” “There’s nobody in that backfield, and he can do it all.”
The former San Diego Chargers great compared Jacobs’ early NFL opportunity to one Jon Gruden gave Cadillac Williams in Tampa Bay.
Gruden ran the Buccaneers when they selected Williams No. 5 overall and then gave him 310 touches as a rookie in 2005. He turned that sum into 1,259 yards total offense and six touchdowns. He got 225 touches the following year and totaled 994 yards and a score.
Jacobs should do better than both of those output sums in this offense – Gruden will give Jacobs similar opportunities -- loaded with weapons at the skill positions. Assuming, of course, that he stays healthy.
Tomlinson then used highlights to show why Jacobs should be effective, including plays made as a runner, receiver and pass protector.
Jacobs saw that Tomlinson video clip on Twitter and gave a motivated response.
No pressure time to work https://t.co/tsiUPKi3L4— Josh Jacobs (@iAM_JoshJacobs) July 9, 2019
Tomlinson is widely considered among the greatest all-around running backs, with a career Jacobs should aspire to and one Raiders fans would be thrilled for him to have in silver and black.
The pair have met, and Tomlinson came away impressed.
“That kid is ready to play,” Tomlinson said. “That kid is going to have a huge impact. He might be the rookie of the year."