Raiders bolster backfield with Josh Jacobs in 1st round
Gregory Shamus / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The Oakland Raiders selected running back Josh Jacobs out of Alabama with the 24th overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Oakland used its second first-round selection of the night to fill a massive void in its backfield with Marshawn Lynch expected to retire.

Jacobs was the consensus top running back in the 2019 draft class and offers a complete skill set for head coach Jon Gruden.

The former Crimson Tide star will combine with recently signed Isaiah Crowell to form a bruising backfield duo, with Jalen Richard seeing time as the third-down back.

Prospect profile

School: Alabama
Height: 5-10
Weight: 220 lbs

Strengths

  • Sudden, explosive athlete
  • Elite elusiveness to make defenders miss and create yards for himself
  • Rarely brought down by first contact
  • Incredible balance allows him to barely break stride while shaking tackles
  • Will drop his shoulder and completely run through a defender
  • Good vision and decisiveness to hit the right running lane
  • Keeps plays alive and finishes runs with an impressive level of effort
  • Big-play ability as a pass-catcher
  • Physicality translates to impact as a pass-blocker

Weaknesses

  • Doesn't have home-run speed
  • Lacks production of a typical high-level running back prospect

Bottom line

Here's to wagering a guess that the NFL learned from letting Alvin Kamara slip to the third round of the 2017 draft. Jacobs is an entirely different player, but one of the few negatives working against him - as was the case for Kamara coming out of Tennessee - is that he wasn't the feature back at Alabama. Everything in his game so clearly projects to the next level, so the limited mileage should actually be considered a positive for his long-term outlook in the NFL. Jacobs is a first-round talent who can make an impact in all phases on offense and it'll be no surprise if he immediately emerges as one of the league's top backs.

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Raiders bolster backfield with Josh Jacobs in 1st round
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