It is all too apparent that in the year dubbed as “The Year of the Quarterback,” it is exactly that. In week one, four quarterbacks threw for over 400 yards, including rookie Cam Newton who had 422 yards. Jason Campbell was in the bottom five quarterbacks in yardage with 105, but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Running back Darren McFadden, who had a great year last season, was number one in the NFL in rushing with 150 total yards for week one. He averaged 6 yards per carry. This is extremely significant because this has undeniably become a passers league, with many defenses making adjustments to guard bigger, faster receivers. This leaves a small gap when it comes to defending the running game, which is great news for the Raiders.
Not only is McFadden off to a high-powered start, Michael Bush is not far behind. He ran for 30 yards on Monday night, which was right up there with the starters DeAngelo Williams, Reggie Bush and BenJarvus Green-Ellis.
For years Al Davis has drafted big, fast, strong guys; it’s almost a “gimmie” that if one of these players becomes available, Al will find a way to sign him. So after all this time of building a team of big men, it’s finally paying off. The offensive line is stacked and poised to create holes for the running backs (they just need to perfect how to not block the back as well).
In the “Year of the Quarterback,” Jason Campbell is going to have to give up the spotlight to McFadden. Expect to see the Raiders be one of the few running teams this season, and succeed at it.