Oakland Raiders: 5 Things To Keep An Eye On In First Preseason Game

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May 19, 2015; Alameda, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders running back Trent Richardson (33) at organized team activities at the Raiders practice facility. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Who Will Be Latavius Murray‘s Primary Backup?

Though not set in stone by any stretch of the imagination, it seems to be a commonly held belief that third year back Latavius Murray will be Oakland’s main ball carrier when the season starts. And not without good reason. In limited action last season – mostly toward the end of the year – thanks to the ineffectiveness of both Darren McFadden and Maurice Jones-Drew, Murray started getting a few more carries here and there.

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  • And the results were fairly electric.

    In one memorable game, Murray carried four times for more than 100 yards and two scores against the Kansas City Chiefs for Oakland’s first win of the year. For the season, Murray averaged more than five yards a carry and effectively earned the starting role this year.

    The bigger question then is, who will be his primary backup? Many thought that when the team signed Trent Richardson, that the disappointing former third overall pick would be the primary back up, possibly even splitting carries with Murray. And while that may yet still be the plan, Richardson even making the roster is a toss up at this point. That is mostly due to the fact that he missed some days at the start of camp as he recovered from pneumonia, and the emergence of UDFA Michael Dyer, who has really impressed the coaching staff in Richardson’s absence.

    Free agent pick up Roy Helu, and returning veteran Marcel Reece will both figure into OC Bill Musgrave‘s new offense, but sorting out the primary and back up ball carriers is a question a long way from being answered.

    Murray will likely get very limited time on the field against the Rams while Richardson and Dyer will both get the majority of the carries as they battle for a roster spot.

    Next: What's Wrong With the Rookie?