Although the Raiders recently signed CFL Grey Cup MVP Kory Sheets, Paul Gutierrez of ESPN.com sees that as only part of the running back picture in 2014. While he writes that Sheets will be hungry to prove he belongs, Gutierrez believes the competition will be a three horse race. He sees the team re-signing Rashad Jennings to be the frontrunner, but that the organization is very high on second year player Latavius Murray. Darren McFadden is not expected to return. Here are some other notes from around the AFC:
- Gutierrez outlines his ideal offseason for the Raiders, a franchise with over $60.7MM in cap space according to OverTheCap.com. His wish list includes Alex Mack at center, Mark Sanchez at quarterback, and receiver Sammy Watkins of Clemson with the team’s first round pick. He also wants the team to retain Lamarr Houston to be their left end and sign Jared Allen to rush the passer from the other side.
- The Patriots‘ pass rush wasn’t great in 2013, and Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald has a plan to improve that this offseason. It will take a few cuts and a restructuring of Vince Wilfork‘s contract that will pay him $11.6MM next season, but with free agents such as Allen and Shaun Phillips, and a draft deep with passrushing talent, Howe can see the Patriots being better in 2014.
- Ryan Mathews is coming off a career year for the Chargers, but the team’s former superstar runningback has advice for Mathews. In an interview with Michael Gehlken of UT San Diego, LaDanian Tomlinson, “My advice to Ryan would be just to ball out like he did this past season, and everything will take care of itself. You go to everything in the offseason. You prove your worth to the team by being there, not by being absent.” Chargers fans would be happy if Mathews is able to adhere to the advice of his predecessor. “Do your business on the field, and everything takes care of itself.”