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Maurice Jones-Drew absence shouldn't affect Raiders run game

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Jeff Zelevansky

On Sunday, the Raiders will take on the Patriots in Foxborough seeking revenge for the Tuck rule. As of Saturday, linebackers Sio Moore and Nick Roach were the only starters expected to miss the game. They will now be joined by Maurice Jones-Drew who has been ruled out according to NFL Network's Ian Rapport.

While it may seem that MJD's injury is a blow to the Raiders, that is not the case. Against the Jets, Jones-Drew had 9 carries for 11 yards with a ridiculous 1.2 yards per carry. While the Jets have a strong defensive line, there is no excuse for three feet a carry.

With MJD sidelined, Darren McFadden and Latavius Murray will be asked to carry the load for Oakland. Last week against the Texans, McFadden looked explosive and ran hard for the first time in multiple years. He usually just falls to the ground, but that was not the case last Sunday.

Latavius Murray should also get some reps and an opportunity to show off his immense potential. He is 6'2", 223 pounds and can run a 4.38 40-yard dash. Murray was sidelined his rookie season with an ankle injury so the Raiders are looking forward to seeing what he can do against an NFL starting defense.

When the Silver and Black drafted him in the sixth-round in 2013, I was shocked he was still on the board. Murray was the star of a UCF offense that featured Blake Bortles. He rushed for 1,106 yards and 19 touchdowns his senior season with the Knights.

While Maurice Jones-Drew will not suit up against the Patriots, his injury should not have an effect on the Raiders running game.