Raiders need to revive run attack

December, 8, 2011
12/08/11
4:50
PM ET
It does not look like Darren McFadden will play Sunday at Green Bay. The Raiders’ star running back has missed five straight games due to a foot injury and he has missed both days of practice this week.

The Raiders, who are 7-5 and who are tied with the Broncos for first place in the AFC West, need to get McFadden back as soon as possible. Their run game, one of the best in the NFL, has sagged in recent weeks. Backup Michael Bush did a fantastic job in the first three games without McFadden, but Oakland’s run-game efficiency has been lacking in the past two games.

According to ESPN Stats and Information, the Raiders averaged 32.5 carries, 156.8 yards per game and 4.8 yards per carry in the first 10 games of the season. However, in the past two games, Oakland has averaged 20.5 carries (last in the NFL), 59.5 yards per game and 2.9 yards per attempt in the past two games. Oakland had to abandon the run in a loss at Miami on Sunday because it fell way behind Miami in an eventual 34-14 loss.

Even without McFadden, Oakland will have to find a way to reestablish the run at Green Bay. The Raiders are going to have to sustain some long drives to keep the ball out of Aaron Rodgers’ hands.

Meanwhile, it looks like the Raiders will continue to be without receivers Jacoby Ford (foot) and Denarius Moore (foot) and running back Taiwan Jones (hamstring) barring a major change. All three players missed practice Thursday and they have all missed recent game time. The Raiders clearly missed all the speed these players possessed at Miami. Now, it looks like the Raiders will have to try to be the first team to beat the Packers this season without their world-class speed.

Not all is lost for Oakland on the injury front. Receiver Chaz Schilens (foot) and defensive tackle John Henderson (knee) were back at practice Thursday.

Bill Williamson | email

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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