Jones gearing up for chance to be change-of-pace back

November 3, 2011, 11:04 pm
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ALAMEDA -- No doubt Michael Bush will get the majority of carries for the Raiders on Sunday should Darren McFadden not be able to play on his sprained right foot.But rookie Taiwan Jones will also have an opportunity to shine as the all-important "change-of-pace" back behind Bush. In fact, with his deceptive quickness, ability to create in open space and innate will to make people miss, some see Jones as a mini-Run DMC.

"Speed," Bush said, when asked what Jones brings to the game. "He picks up where Darren leaves off. And he can catch out of the backfield just like we can."Three of Jones' five carries on the season came in the Raiders' last game. And 18 of his 30 rushing yards came in that same game.Think he's ready for a little more? He has been splitting reps with Bush in practice this week."You've just got to remember, it's just football," Jones said. "I've been doing this my whole life and I'm doing it every day in practice. It's just, this time I might get to show everybody else what I can do."Many observers questioned the Raiders' decision to draft Jones when they already had McFadden and Bush. But with one runner down, Oakland seems vindicated now."You need good runners because when you look around the league, there's a lot of guys that are kind of bruised and battered right now," Raiders coach Hue Jackson said. "I just think you have to have those other guys who can make special plays and Taiwan Jones is one of those guys."Jones has been timed as fast as 4.27 seconds in the 40-yard dash. Which begs the question -- is he simply a stereotypical speed back who eschews running between the tackles?"You know, that's been something that's always been on my mind because a lot of people say because I'm a speed guy that I like to run outside," Jones said. "But I'm willing to go inside. Whenever coach needs me to run inside, Im willing to do it. It's just football."And it's just an opportunity to showcase his skills come Sunday.