McFadden key cog in Allen's plans for Raiders


McFadden key cog in Allen's plans for Raiders

Finally, thankfully, cooler heads appeared to have prevailed.Granted, the drum to trade Darren McFadden for draft picks was being beaten by fans and media types. Not purportedly by anyone who actually works inside the walls of Silver and Blackdom.Still, it was a relief, or at least, it should be a relief to hear new Raiders coach Dennis Allen say today at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis that the artist known as Run DMC is in his plans for next season, even if he's been a more injury-plagued Limp DMC of late. Especially after being was lost for the season after spraining his right foot on a tackle by Kansas City linebacker Derrick Johnson after picking up three yards on a pass play from Kyle Boller with 12 minutes to go in the first quarter on Oct. 23.RELATED: Q&A with Raiders HC Dennis Allen
In fact, Allen said McFadden was actually in the Raiders' Alameda facility working out last week."Yes, his foot is better," Allen said. "And we got a good evaluation on him. Darren will be ready to go whenever we get ready to kick off the season, that's for sure."I think he's an extremely dynamic player. Again, from playing the Oakland Raiders twice last year, they were much more challenging to defend when Darren McFadden was in the backfield, and having that kind of two-headed monster between him and (Michael) Bush, that was a real challenge. Darren is a vital part of what we're going to try and get done next year."So there you have it. And really, trading away so much potential -- yes, I realize McFadden has missed 19 of 64 games due to injury since being the No. 4 overall pick of the 2008 draft -- for draft picks made little sense, what with the Raiders' salary cap issues.But retaining McFadden might spell the end of Bush, who is an unrestricted free agent.Consider: McFadden is due 5.65 million this season and if the Raiders use the franchise tag to retain Bush, they'd owe two running backs a combined 13 million. And why would they want to pay a back-up in Bush more than a starter in McFadden.Granted, Bush excelled immediately after McFadden went down, but seemed to wear down at the end of the season. If he gets offered starter's money elsewhere -- Cincinnati? -- Bush is gone. Which leaves Taiwan Jones as the primary back-up tailback, and he does not seem to be ready physically.Meaning the Raiders are scanning all possible reasons for McFadden's health issues in the NFL."We're looking at everything within the organization, how we can improve in every aspect of the organization, and obviously practice fields is one of the things that were looking at," Allen said. "Is there something we can do to improve that, and is their a correlation between the foot injuries and the practice fields? If we can deduce there is a correlation between the two, well do everything we can to get them right."A healthy McFadden is one of the more electric backs in the NFL, and a hybrid player coming out of the backfield.But how will he fit in new offensive coordinator Greg Knapp's West Coast system, which uses zone-blocking schemes not seen in these parts in a few years?"We're going to give him the opportunity to be successful," Allen said. "Whatever gives him that opportunity, that's what we're going to do. I will say this, when you look at the running games that Greg has been a part of, they've all been very successful with a lot of different of styles of runners. And even look at what Darren was able to do a couple years ago, really running the same scheme with Tom Cable."I think Darren McFadden will be successful in any type of running game that you put him in because he's that explosive."And still a member of the Raiders, which is the most important aspect. Now if they can just keep him healthy...

Del Rio’s anxiety level up with trio of Raiders going extreme in New Zealand


Del Rio’s anxiety level up with trio of Raiders going extreme in New Zealand

Raiders Pro Bowl left guard Kelechi Osemele, running back Taiwan Jones and safety Brynden Trawick are currently enjoying their offseason in New Zealand. 

But a few videos they posted going white-water rafting and bungee jumping left head coach Jack Del Rio a bit anxious. 

"Anxiety level went up a bit thinking of my BIG pro bowl LG on the rapids!!" Del Rio tweeted Monday. "Can't leave out Brynden or Taiwan either ... have fun and be safe"

Osemele has posted a handful of photos and videos from the trip, including one of a raft capsizing with the caption: "It got real out there!!! Category 4 Rapids #NewZealand." Another showed the 6-foot-5, 333-pounder doing a backflip off a bungee platform with the caption: "Just did a backflip off the highest swing in the WORLD!!!!!!! Crazy!!! #LivingLife"

Report: Former Raiders RB arrested for domestic violence


Report: Former Raiders RB arrested for domestic violence

Trent Richardson is reportedly in some trouble.

Richardson was arrested on Thursday night for domestic violence, according to TMZ Sports.

The former running back was taken into custody on a third degree charge, the report states, with bail being set for $1,000.

The arrest was made in Hoover, Alabama.

The Browns selected Richardson with the third overall pick in the 2012 draft.

He was traded to the Colts in 2013 and played for Indianapolis in 2014.

He signed with the Raiders in 2015 and appeared in three exhibition games, but did not make the team.

The 26-year old was cut by the Ravens last August.