It was hard to find anyone who thought that running back Darren McFadden would be back with the Raiders in 2014.
The oft-injured running back was less effective than Rashad Jennings last season and the Raiders made little effort to keep McFadden from hitting the open market, which made Tuesday’s news of McFadden’s return to Oakland a bit surprising. McFadden signed a one-year deal worth $1.75 million with another $2.25 million in incentives and $100,000 guaranteed, and his agent Ian Greengross said that his client turned down bigger offers elsewhere.
“We did have real interest from four or five other teams — one offered more money,” Greengross said, via Jerry McDonald of the Bay Area News Group. “Darren wanted to stay a Raider. He felt like he still had something to prove in silver and black.”
It’s hard to imagine that there was a vast difference in offers if McFadden went back to Oakland and other situations might not offer the same chance to cash in on incentives. Jennings is headed to the Giants, leaving McFadden at the top of a depth chart that includes Latavius Murray, Jeremy Stewart and Kory Sheets. If he’s healthy, McFadden should get plenty of opportunities to earn that extra $2.25 million next season.
That’s an Everest-sized if, but McFadden will get one more chance to show Oakland that he can.