Oakland Raiders running back Josh Jacobs enjoyed quite the career debut during the team’s 24-16 win against the Denver Broncos in the 2019 NFL season opener on Monday night.
The Raiders cashed in one of their three first-round picks from the 2019 NFL Draft on Jacobs with the hope that he can emerge into a bonafide workhorse. It is safe to say he got off to a stellar start on solidifying that notion against Denver.
Jacobs registered 85 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries while tacking on another reception for 28 yards. Regardless, he still feels he could have done more.
According to Kyle Martin of the team’s official website, the rookie says he left plenty of yards on the table in his debut:
“Honestly, if you want me to be honest with you, I feel like I left a lot of yards on the table,” Jacobs said critically. “So, I mean it feels good because I’d rather win — regardless of the yards — but me personally I know I left a lot of yards on the table. So, that’s my biggest focus when I watch film and coming back in tomorrow. Just focusing on taking everything that’s given to me.”
It is encouraging to see that Jacobs is not satisfied with his production. Although it may not have been up to his expectations, there is no denying that the Raiders are pleased with the skillset he displayed in his performance.
His outing was more than enough to help Oakland secure the victory. It seems it was also enough to earn him a spot in the history books as the first player since Hall of Famer LaDanian Tomlinson to record 100 yards from scrimmage and 2 rush TDs in his NFL debut. His comments indicate that perhaps he was unhappy with his efficiency after dialing up a mere 3.7 yards per carry, however, this can be forgiven considering he is still trying to find his footing as a rookie.
Jacobs was not the only first-rounder to leave his mark on the win. Defensive end Clelin Ferrell and safety Jonathan Abram also made their presence felt in containing the Broncos’ offense. The promising start for this trio of rookies is a positive sign for Oakland moving forward, although Abram suffered an injury that is expected to cost him the remainder of his rookie season.
The Raiders will certainly need all the confidence they can get as they get set to host the high-powered Kansas City Chiefs in Week 2. The Chiefs are coming off an impressive 40-26 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 1.