December 30, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders running back Darren McFadden (20) runs for a short gain during the second quarter against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Darren McFadden Says Zone-Blocking Scheme “Didn’t Work”


When the Oakland Raiders brought in Greg Knapp as offensive coordinator in 2012, they never could have expected the struggles that would ensue.

Knapp’s zone-blocking scheme was not popular in Oakland, especially with star running back Darren McFadden, who averaged a dismal 3.27 yards per carry last season.

“I looked forward to trying it, but no, it didn’t work,” McFadden told the San Francisco Chronicle. “Sometimes it’s hard to say that you can’t do something, but as an offense we couldn’t…so now we’re back to trying something else.”

The front office took notice, and after a 4-12 season, fired Knapp and his assistants in favor of Greg Olson. Olson will re-install the power running scheme that McFadden has had success with in the past.

“This is very exciting for me,” McFadden said. “I am the type of guy who likes to go downhill, make a cut and go; that’s my thing. We’ll mix it up like we used to, and get some zones in there, but for the most part, I will be keeping my shoulders toward the line of scrimmage.”

After a career year in 2010 when he rushed for over 1,000 yards, McFadden has seen his production decrease due to injury in 2011 and the ineffective running scheme in 2012.

He had 216 rushing attempts last season, but only garnered 707 yards and two touchdowns.

 

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  • jeff yaws

    we knew the knapp zone block wouldnt work when he was rehired before the season started