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Oft-injured Raiders running back Darren McFadden is at the end of his rookie contract, ready to hit unrestricted free agency for the first time. Retaining him isn’t a high priority.
Citing McFadden’s agent, NFL.com senior analyst Gil Brandt reported that the Raiders will meet with McFadden’s reps on Saturday “to discuss re-signing.”
“This is really the time where we really begin those type of talks and those type of negotiations,” Raiders head coach Dennis Allen said in a Thursday press conference at the NFL Scouting Combine. “We’ll sit down with his people and get a better feel for where he’s at and go from there.”
A source indicated that there is interest in McFadden, but it has to be at the right price. The right price, in this case, is another term for cheap. Largely, the market for him will dictate the Raiders' pursuit of McFadden once free agency begins. If his value is relatively high, the Raiders are expected to let him walk. If it bottoms out, McFadden could come back.
McFadden matched his career-low with 3.3 yards per carry in 2013, yet another season marred by injury. McFadden missed six games and most of three others due to hamstring injuries. McFadden can be productive when healthy, and could be a solid accent piece to a rushing attack.
“When you look at it, Darren McFadden is an extremely good player and a high talent, but unfortunately he’s had the injury history,” Allen said Thursday in an interview with SiriusXM radio. “What we have to do from a business standpoint is you’ve got to look at the dollar figure compared to the availability and what you’re able to get out of it. I think that’s something that we’re going to look at. We’re going to be in communication with Darren’s agent and see where he’s at.”
The Raiders hope to re-sign Rashad Jennings, who took over McFadden’s role as feature back in 2013. The Raiders also signed CFL star Kory Sheets this offseason to compete for a roster spot. Latavius Murray is also in the mix after spending his rookie season on injured reserve.