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Darren McFadden remains confident he can succeed in Raiders scheme

Oakland Raiders v Miami Dolphins Getty Images

The Raiders got blown out by the Dolphins on Sunday and one of the biggest reasons why was their total inability to run the ball in the second half.

Oakland took a 10-7 lead into the third quarter, but they ran for -1 yard on six carries in the second half. As the Dolphins began to pull away to a 35-13 win, abandoning the run made sense. But their lack of success earlier in the half and minimal success in the first half came well before there was a need to change approaches.

This wasn’t what anyone expected to see with a healthy Darren McFadden in the lineup and much blame has been pointed at the shift to a zone blocking scheme under new offensive coordinator Greg Knapp. Some people believe that McFadden is a bad fit with such a style, an assertion that’s gained credence in the first two weeks of the season. McFadden isn’t on board with that notion, however.

“I’m very comfortable in this scheme,” McFadden said, via Paul Gutierrez of CSNBayArea.com. “I just feel like we have to get going. Like I say, you hit one or two runs here, three-yard runs here, and eventually it’s going to start popping.”

Almost any change in schemes is going to have a transition period where things don’t work out as hoped. The Raiders’ best-case scenario right now is that McFadden is right and that they are in the midst of such a rough patch. If these struggles don’t start turning into successes, it’s going to be a long season for McFadden and the entire Raiders rushing game.

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48 Responses to “Darren McFadden remains confident he can succeed in Raiders scheme”
  1. hehateme2 says: Sep 17, 2012 11:25 AM

    The Dolphins have a good run defense. They held the Texans to a low average as well. So, keep that in mind when McFadden couldn’t get it going.

  2. buckarama says: Sep 17, 2012 11:25 AM

    It’s been a long decade for Raider fans. How anyone can put that crap on the field and call it a NFL Football team is beyond me. By the way lets pay them all Millions of dollars why we are at it!

  3. eagleswin says: Sep 17, 2012 11:25 AM

    On the bright side, at least he’s outperforming $56 mill running back Chris Johnson.

  4. tdk24 says: Sep 17, 2012 11:26 AM

    I don’t know what their blocking scheme was called last year, but apparently he did better in that then in this zone blocking scheme. Either that’s the issue or teams are just not letting him do what he did last year before his injury.

  5. r8rsfan says: Sep 17, 2012 11:27 AM

    Knapp was such a poor play in his previous stint in Oaktown that the Cable guy took over play calling and an immediate improvement was seen. Knapp was gone at the end of the season. The definition of insanity is expecting a different result with the same scheme. Bottom line – this organization is too cheap to put an experienced, proved coaching staff in place. Knapp can’t call plays and Allen is a deer in the headlights. And that’s not even mentioning the horrible secondary and confused LB’s.

  6. nestaaali says: Sep 17, 2012 11:34 AM

    Yesterday was pathetic. Embarrassing. I’d rather put the 3rd string on the field than watch our first team play like that. Granted we haven’t had any real success in a decade, to lose the way we did yesterday was hard to stomach. Hubris Jackson had faults, but at least the offense showed some signs of life. Special teams too. I understand the ZBS takes time to produce, and I like what RM and DA are attempting to do with the philosophy of the team, but that was just hard to stomach. Another showing like that, and Knapp has to go.

  7. joetoronto says: Sep 17, 2012 11:41 AM

    It’s a matter of time before the run game gets going and when it does, look out.

    Palmer has looked good with no running game, he look much better when it gets going.

  8. r81ders says: Sep 17, 2012 11:43 AM

    I dont understand if he was doing good in cables and jacksons run style why in the heck do you force some dumb scheme on him that will not work. Palmer also looks like WOW. This is a joke i rather have jackson or cable back if we are going to rebuild why the hell not trade all these vets for fresh new players. DMAC is done in oakland unless they trade him or change schemes. Its a joke to be a Raiders fan.

  9. onderin says: Sep 17, 2012 11:47 AM

    It’s really tough to see this Raiders team right now. Not a lot of good things happening. Plus with the Steelers and Broncos coming up, they could be 0-4 heading into the bye week.

    Even with that possibility looming, the toxic reaction from Raider Nation has been really unsettling these two weeks. All I hear is “Fire *insert every Raider employee*”. Not to talk down about a man who is no longer with us, but that’s the exact approach we had with Al Davis the past decade and it did the team no good.

    How about we give this regime some time? I know this sucks, but in order for Reggie and Allen to get what they want on the field they are going to be stripping this team for the next two years at least.

    It’s not a fun process seeing your team have to take a step back, but sometimes that’s necessary to eventually to put a quality product on the field.

  10. KIR says: Sep 17, 2012 11:49 AM

    The Raiders OFFENSE was very good last year. They should have kept HUE and got a new Defensive coordinator.

  11. csdaddy7777 says: Sep 17, 2012 11:51 AM

    I think another part of the problem is the raiders have not been committed to the run. Its as if they think they have the falcons receivers. Mcfadden ran the ball 11 times the entire game. Bush ran the ball 9 times in the first quarter alone. Therefore in the miami heat the phins wore down oaklands d by continuing to feed bush and the other back the ball. If the raiders can’t commit to running the rock with Mcfadden they are in serious doggie doodoo

  12. justwinbaby29 says: Sep 17, 2012 11:56 AM

    Reggie McKenzie and Dennis Allen both have at least three probably four years to get this thing turned around. I predicted the Raiders at 9-7 but (while it is only 2 games) have come to the realization that this is a 5-11 team at best.

    This team needs a complete rebuilding job. There is just not much talent on the defense. Seymour and Kelly are past their prime and need to go. McClain is a bust. There is no talent at CB.

    The ship will get righted but it will take some time.

  13. radrntn says: Sep 17, 2012 11:57 AM

    say what you want but when the raiders every year lead the league in penalties, lead the league in miles traveled every year, and every east coast game is a 10am pst start time. I have to question if the league is really about being fair. 10 am games means a 5:15am wake up call, after flying in late at night the night before the game ( they got into Miami after 9pm sat night)…..it’s pretty hard not to be flat. Raiders looked like they had a serious case of jet lag in that game. The league should make it mandatory when west coast teams play on the east coast, they should have the afternoon game. (period)

    as far as zbs……their offense is strait up boring to watch, and lacks any and all imagination…..no reverses, no gadgets, or trick plays, not even a single pitch out to mc fadden on the edge where he can utilize his speed, just boring football to watch….i mean 1 for 12 on third downs…that says all you need to know about this offense and the play calling. Hue last year had big balls to call some of his plays that he did, fake punts, fake field goals, etc……but it was exciting to watch, and we scored….watching them now just makes me mad…….defense can’t even come up with a take-away…c’mon raiders…lets go

  14. go9ers says: Sep 17, 2012 11:57 AM

    Two games in and they’ve already had their butts kicked dy the Dolphins and they’re a game behind the Browns. Looks like the Raiders will give the Chiefs some competition for the top draft pick.

  15. sourdough says: Sep 17, 2012 12:04 PM

    All one heard in the offseason from Raiders fans was that this Raiders team would be different than the last nine that have failed to post a winning record because,

    1) Palmer had an entire offseason to work w his offense/WR’s.

    And

    2) A healthy McFadden would be in beast mode and run all over opponents. So far he has 56 yards on 26 carries for a paltry 2.1 yard per carry average. Not exactly beastly, is it Raiders fan!?!

    Just lose, baby!

  16. nflhof says: Sep 17, 2012 12:08 PM

    The Raiders are so bad right now it’s pathetic. We all know now why they accepted the new blackout rule to reduce the sell out numbers to 85%. You have to wonder if Al Davis ever would have accepted such mediocrity.

  17. r8rsfan says: Sep 17, 2012 12:09 PM

    The team has no playmakers on defense. And the tackling has to be the worst in the league. In basketball it’s called matador defense – ole!

  18. junior559 says: Sep 17, 2012 12:23 PM

    Raider fans i know it looks bad, really bad after all the hope we had but that defense needs a true pass rusher and at least one good corner, honestly as a raiders fan palmer is not out guy it would be nice to be able to get matt barkley in the draft because its gonna be a long season for the silver and black unfortunatley

  19. torturedraiderfan says: Sep 17, 2012 12:24 PM

    I’m a Raider fan. I’ve been through this enough over that last 10 years. I already know how this story ends. Wake me up when the season’s over.

  20. nyoazz says: Sep 17, 2012 12:29 PM

    I’m with justwinbaby29. Our DT’s were nowhere to be found yesterday. Then Kelly wants to talk about how emberrassed he is. I would be too if I played like he did. The Raiders still have the damn mentality that they can breeze through games against inferior opponents. This means you Kelly & Seymour. The Dolphins get paid too and obviously wanted it more than the Raiders did.

    Also, Knapp should be on the next plane out of Oakland. Us fans probably would have more patience with the ZBS if somebody other than Knapp was running it. He failed before and he will fail again. Dennis Allen made a horrible decision in bringing Knapp back to Oakland. As somebody else mentioned, Knapp was the QB coach in Houston, not the OC. Dennis Allen may just eventually pay for that mistake with his job.

    Bench Carson Palmer. In a postgame show, Jeremy Newberry noticed that Palmer may have elbow tendinitis in his throwing arm. If this is the case, put Leinert in. Palmer is so erratic with his passes. I do not trust him. At least Leinert has some experience in this offense. The Raiders play like they didn’t even have a training camp this year. The Raiders look like the best pick-up/sandlot football team ever, but this is the damn NFL. Lorenzo Neal even said that a high school football team would of had a better percentage on 3rd down against the Dolphins than the Raiders did.

    The more things change, the more they stay the same. The Raiders way. C’mon McKenzie, get on the coach that you hired’s azz and get some damn results. This BS does not take several years to acclamate. Just look across the bay and see how it’s done. It no longer takes a few years to turn things around, just smart decisions. Bringing Knapp and the ZBS back to Oakland not one of them.

    Raiders: Out-played, out-coached, out-managed.

  21. dannymac17 says: Sep 17, 2012 12:32 PM

    The Raiders are embarrassing.

  22. radrntn says: Sep 17, 2012 12:34 PM

    sourdough says:
    Sep 17, 2012 12:04 PM
    All one heard in the offseason from Raiders fans was that this Raiders team would be different than the last nine that have failed to post a winning record because,
    _______________________________

    incredible, sourdough did not hit his paste button….raiders eight strait season, yadda yadda yadda,,,wow thats a first

  23. whateverhommie says: Sep 17, 2012 12:42 PM

    r81ders says: Sep 17, 2012 11:43 AM

    I dont understand if he was doing good in cables and jacksons run style why in the heck do you force some dumb scheme on him that will not work. Palmer also looks like WOW. This is a joke i rather have jackson or cable back if we are going to rebuild why the hell not trade all these vets for fresh new players. DMAC is done in oakland unless they trade him or change schemes. Its a joke to be a Raiders fan.
    —————————————————

    McFadden never actually excelled in the zone blocking scheme when Cable was here. The zone blocking scheme favored former Raider Michael Bush as his numbers bore out. Once the team switched to a power blocking scheme under Hue Jackson, Bush’s numbers went way down and McFadden’s yards per carry and total yards gained exploded.

    Now under Gregg Knaap, the scheme is going back to the ZBS and away from McFadden’s strength.

    DMC is NOT the problem. The OC and the scheme IS.

  24. raiderrob68 says: Sep 17, 2012 12:52 PM

    Fire Knapp. Promote Al Saunders!!! At LEAST let him take over play calling. DMac did horribly in the zone blocking scheme his first years in the league. Under Hue Jackson and Al Saunders, he became a beast. Now he’s in the wrong system. While we’re at it, Carson Palmer is in the wrong system too. Fire Knapp. If this kind of coaching continues, fire Dennis Allen. Not prepared to call for his firing…..yet. Gotta give the young coach a little slack. This is a GOOD team. The offensive personnel is playoff-caliber. The defense lacks CB and depth at LB. Nothing a brilliant defensive-minded scheme can’t cover up. We deserve better, Reggie McKenzie.

  25. r8rsfan says: Sep 17, 2012 12:58 PM

    Don’t crack on Palmer – he’s the one bright spot on offense. DHB, Streater, etc. do not strike fear in any opponent. Any doubt about the stupidity of taking DHB over Crabtree was erased last night. I think the DB’s in Oaktown are so bad that they make these WR’s look unstoppable in practice, games have shown otherwise.

  26. souldogdave says: Sep 17, 2012 1:03 PM

    I had high hopes, now I will take a few weeks off of football, and see if there are any W’s in our season before I waste time watching the Raiders again. I am just tired of the inferior product on the field, year after year.

  27. 7pints says: Sep 17, 2012 1:04 PM

    Joetoronto is right! If they had the running game going it could have been 35-20! Lol!!! Stop embarrassing yourself.

  28. raiderlyfe510 says: Sep 17, 2012 1:32 PM

    Dennis Allen and his staff are jokes. It’s amazing how our O Line and running game were our strength last year…..now all of a sudden they can’t block….it’s the coaches not the players.

    I told you all. Dennis Allen and Knap are going to make Hue Jackson look like a football god.

  29. JSpicoli says: Sep 17, 2012 1:36 PM

    How do you get this from what we had? We were an underachieving 8-8 team who lost their starting QB mid season last year. Now we are circling the drain.

    Good job Coach Uptight.

  30. ambitoos says: Sep 17, 2012 1:50 PM

    Mcfaden can’t catch the ball. In the first two games he has dropped just about everything thrown to him.

  31. dougydougdoug says: Sep 17, 2012 1:53 PM

    McMuffin shouldn’t even be confident that he can make it through to the bye. He can enjoy watching Dancing with the Stars when he inevitably hits IR.

  32. bsizemore68 says: Sep 17, 2012 2:00 PM

    The Raiders had the choice to come down on Friday so the players could be better able to deal with the time change and perhaps to adjust some what to the humidify.Also they knew that they had to play in Miami last April when the schedule came out, bottom line was they were out played and out coach. Bill

  33. r8rnuck says: Sep 17, 2012 2:07 PM

    talk about high expectations…give it until the bye before we write off the season…look at the oline we had when we first tried the zbs…its a bit different now.

    i had a depressed/anxious/hopeless fit all day yesterday but when you do think about it, its only 2 games. every game is winnable and there’s months to go, guys. i’d feel far worse as a chiefs fan (who i thought had a real good chance at taking the division) than raiders. at least we KNEW the team was getting restructured. i don’t agree with all the fire knapp crap. its about the guys failing to execute. sure, you need to find ways to help them excel but at the end of the day, the guys on the field have to deliver. what was mcfaddens excuse for dropping an easy pass to take to the end zone?? oh ya, blame knapp! people are upset (which is expected) but again…the team needs to start clicking as a whole.

  34. mullman76 says: Sep 17, 2012 2:25 PM

    …watching K. Wimbley, Q. Groves & DVD make plays for their new teams was the final insult of another brutal Sunday…

    Steelers next. It could get ugly…

  35. dougydougdoug says: Sep 17, 2012 2:34 PM

    r8rnuck: The issue is that there was nothing in the game against the Hard Knocks which indicated that the Raiders had improved any major aspects of their game, since the loss to SD. I guess, you could argue that not bungling every punt was an improvement, which it is, but only considering that the fiasco from week one was a rare fluke to begin.

    As for the rest of the two phases, that was really horrible. Those two huge runs by Bush should have never happened. Especially the first. How many Raiders did he run into, and not one could tackle the guy? Not good.

  36. trevor123698 says: Sep 17, 2012 2:44 PM

    only suckers had him pegged for a monster year. i had him down near 40th overall for fantasy while he was going about 6th

  37. r8rnuck says: Sep 17, 2012 2:49 PM

    @dougydougdoug…

    you have a point. but unfortunately (for raiders fans) its pretty much what i was saying…the games are showing that the raiders are failing to execute. muffing punts, getting kicks blocked, dropping passes, missing tackles, failing to convert 3rd downs, boneheaded drive-extending (for them)/killing (for us) penalties, losing turnover war, losing field position battle…its easy to say “blame the coaches” but the guys need to be held accountable too, right?

    pft for some reason didn’t post my separate post saying that obviously my medication is working..

  38. dasmol says: Sep 17, 2012 3:05 PM

    McFadden is a different player since the injury. He runs out of bounds and drops passes regularily. He’s playing scared. And that’s a sure way to get hurt.

  39. nomoreseasontix says: Sep 17, 2012 3:18 PM

    The fact that Knapp’s offense was garbage the last time he was here has him on a short leash with the fan base.
    So far it looks like the skepticism is well placed.
    His offense is garbage this time as well.
    Reggie and DA weren’t here for that debacle and likely didn’t understand how unpopular he would be.

  40. robgilman says: Sep 17, 2012 3:38 PM

    Bring back Hue! Oh wait, remember he lost even worse to Miami last year than Allen did? It’s painful to watch but the reality is that this isnt the year. the new management wasnt going to go in and bet the farm like Al did every year. The franchise is taking a step back. Another 8-8 year with Hue overpaying undisciplined guys wasnt going to get them a superbowl anytime soon.

    Now, I pray Reggie doesnt turn out to be an idiot and that he actually knows what hes doing. But I look at Green Bay, I cant remember them making many big high profile signings. They slowly used draft picks and brought in disciplined, talented free agents and built a team. Thats where reggie comes from, and I think, I hope, that is where the Raiders are going. Reggie cleared out a lot of the high paid scholarship guys, and I imagine more will go after this season. Its a slow process, but in time, i think its going to pay off.

  41. calibear831 says: Sep 17, 2012 5:14 PM

    i waited 7-8 months for this?? . . .i couln’t wait to c my Raiders take the field. . .n we get this?!!

  42. masterblaster78 says: Sep 17, 2012 5:36 PM

    Ok, the season is over already, time to start looking at college football and find out who the Raiders are going to draft next year with a 1st round draft pick. Hope it’s not from LSU.

  43. radrntn says: Sep 17, 2012 6:49 PM

    robgilman says:
    Sep 17, 2012 3:38 PM

    Now, I pray Reggie doesnt turn out to be an idiot and that he actually knows what hes doing. But I look at Green Bay, I cant remember them making many big high profile signings. They slowly used draft picks and brought in disciplined, talented free agents and built a team. Thats where reggie comes from, and I think, I hope, that is where the Raiders are going. Reggie cleared out a lot of the high paid scholarship guys, and I imagine more will go after this season. Its a slow process, but in time, i think its going to pay off.
    _______________________________

    so if you are correct in the interim we should just watch college football so we know who the raiders will get with the top three picks in the nfl draft for the next three years why reggie rebuilds a team that has been getting better ever year since 2009……..just build for the future baby…. i don’t think so ,and you are making excuses….. the raiders have gone 8-8 the past couple of years… this team today already reminds me of the 2006 art shell or the 2007 lame kiffin teams, and how they started out. to me it wasn’t the players …..just saying

    Bottom line the next two games will define the 2012 Oakland Raiders, and reflect the coaching staff. Go Raiders!

  44. raiderapologist says: Sep 17, 2012 8:44 PM

    I can’t believe all the despair coming from Raider fans. Then again, my expectations for this season might have been a lot lower than some of yours. By the end of the season fans of 30 teams are going to be disappointed. The only satisfied fans will be those that follow the Super Bowl winner, and Charger fans, who believe beating the Raiders makes for a successful year.

  45. villa41 says: Sep 17, 2012 9:12 PM

    The injuries are piling up. Spencer and Barnes may miss significant time. That’s more concerning than anything, as we all knew the depth was an issue.

    The good news is it doesn’t look like anyone is running away with this division. KC got pounded. Denver is getting pounded, and the Dolts will get pounded soon for being a fraudulent early contender.

    There’s three picks for Manning.

  46. highwaiianjahwaiian says: Sep 18, 2012 3:57 AM

    i wish football teams would make ballsy trades like

    cj2k for mcfadden..

    that would change the game

  47. maximus929 says: Sep 18, 2012 3:09 PM

    Bring back Hue Jackson as OC. Knapp’s system is terrible. How you can’t get RDMC yards is mind boggling.

    Has to be the system… all else is equal.

  48. silvernblak says: Sep 18, 2012 3:18 PM

    What the hell ever happened to our smash mouth football mentality? Power and dominance like we showed on offense last year with the power scheme? Where DMC was on his way to shattering rushing records? Now he averages 2yds? runs out of bounds instead of lowering his shoulder like he used to (which is I believe are specific instructions from DA and Knapp thinking that’s going to keep him healthy is to run out of bounds to avoid contact???! ) Hello??? and he is getting pounded on by the defenses we play. San Diego absolutely slaughtered him! Now we look like a team trying not to lose instead of the pure dominance of the Raider mystique by taking the wins!The O was not our main problem. Our biggest problem was our D! and so DA ( D minded coach) comes in, hires CrappKnapp (ZBS and Al Davis fired) and completely flips over our power offense for this kind of play!?? come on guys lets be honest here! Truth is, were in serious trouble with Hansen or Coye in our backfield. They looked like they were just bodies out there. Our next 3 games while in this offensive scheme we are up a crick without a paddle. I don’t see us doing a damn thing against Roth,Manning and then Ryan in our next 3 games. So, that means what 0-5 and our season is over already? The players are not to blame in my opinion they are doing what they are told to do. They don’t have a choice. As sad as it is to say, the problem is RM for allowing DA to hire that stupid dumb ASS Knapp and allowing his ZBS to continue at 0-2 is the real crime here! Knapp needs to be fired immediately and we need to bring Al Saunders back in to do what he knows is best to exploit all this talent we have that is not being used.Otherwise, see ya next year!

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