Last season, Josh Jacobs cemented himself as one of the best running backs in the NFL. He led the league in rushing and was named First-Team All-Pro. Instead of the Las Vegas Raiders rewarding him for his season, they slapped him with the franchise tag.
Jacobs has hinted that he wouldn’t be very happy if he was forced to play on the franchise tag but the Raiders have consistently stated that they’d like to sign him to a long-term deal. The star running back has been relatively quiet since having the franchise tag placed on him but decided to post a concerning message during draft weekend.
Fans noticed on Jacobs’ Snapchat that he said he hasn’t been in Vegas for months and doesn’t “plan on coming back” anytime soon.
Now, this message could have nothing to do with football. He could just be letting his friends out in Las Vegas know that he’s going to spend the offseason out of town. That said, the Raiders do have offseason programs starting up that Jacobs isn’t attending. He can’t attend them until he signs the franchise tag tender, which it’s unlikely that he will in the near future. With the draft wrapping up, this is the biggest situation to watch with the Raiders this offseason.
Jacobs to the Dolphins?
If things aren’t going to work out between the Raiders and Jacobs, they will certainly be able to find a trade partner. He’s one of the best running backs in the NFL and is only 25 years old. It’s harder to make trades after the draft but if a team looking for a running back doesn’t get one they like, Jacobs becomes a very interesting player.
The Miami Dolphins have been talked about as a team looking for a running back. They’ve been linked to Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook but Jacobs is a younger option who played with Tua Tagovailoa at Alabama. Fans also noticed that Jacobs said he was in Miami.
The fact that he’s in Miami doesn’t mean he’s forcing a trade there but it doesn’t seem like he’d be too bent out of shape if that’s where he ended up.
Jacobs Likely Still Stays in Las Vegas
The Raiders didn’t add a running back early in the draft and Zamir White didn’t play enough snaps to know if he’s a good replacement for Jacobs. Considering how important he was to the offense last season, it’s difficult to imagine the team won’t retain him. Paying running backs is always a tough pill to swallow but Jacobs is young, he works hard and is a leader on the team. It’s not easy to replace players of his caliber.
Whether or not he stays could come down to how much he wants to get paid. Almost every team that has given a running back a big contract in recent years has regretted it. Jacobs doesn’t want to sign a big contract just to get cut or traded in three years. If he’s willing to accept something similar to the four-year, $48 million contract Aaron Jones got from the Green Bay Packers a couple of years ago, that would make sense for both sides.