Earlier in the offseason, Raiders coach Tom Cable said he wanted a featured back to emerge between Darren McFadden and Michael Bush. Based on his lofty draft position, McFadden seemed to be the favorite for such a role.
Now, Cable has backtracked on that stance. Instead of having one workhorse, he indicated he might use a backfield committee.
“I think they’re both doing something exciting each day, whether it’s running the ball or pass protecting,” Cable told the Oakland Tribune about McFadden and Bush. “Each one of them has their own strength but they both show up every time we come out here. I actually think their both (No. 1s) and I think it’s a great deal we got going here.”
In my opinion, this will hurt the fantasy value of McFadden and make Bush a more attractive deep sleeper.
It won’t matter much who tops the depth chart, as Cable will use McFadden and Bush based on their skill sets. I expect McFadden to see more time in passing sets, while Bush will handle the majority of work between the tackles. Over the last two seasons, there hasn’t been much of a difference in these two backs from a fantasy perspective, either.
In fact, this duo is separated by just three combined fantasy points since 2008.
On a positive note, McFadden and Bush do face one of the easier schedules in the league among running backs, playing games against the Broncos (2), Chiefs (2), Chargers (2), Colts, Titans, Rams and Seahawks.
Unfortunately, knowing which two of these backs to start on a week-to-week basis could be a major headache. That will limit them both to being potential flex starters (barring injuries) in most fantasy leagues.