Will the Raiders use the franchise tag on RB Josh Jacobs?

NFL free agency is set to begin in just a few weeks and the Raiders have a very interesting decision to make regarding All-Pro RB Josh Jacobs. After declining the fifth-year option last year, Jacobs is scheduled to become a free agent in a few weeks.

The Raiders have expressed their desire for Jacobs to return and it appears the league’s leading rusher wants to be back. But what is the right way for the Raiders to bring him back?

In a recent article by Bill Barnwell of ESPN, he predicts that the Raiders will use the franchise tag to bring back Jacobs for the 2023 season. Here is a snippet of his thoughts on what the Raiders may try to do this offseason regarding Jacobs:

“(Jacobs) is still only 25, and while it’s tough to count on any back to stay healthy for 340 carries on a year-to-year basis, we do occasionally see backs break through at this point of their career and continue to play at a high level for several seasons to come, with Derrick Henry and Marshawn Lynch as examples.

Pricing out that deal might be tough, if only because the Raiders have a team-friendly fallback option with the franchise tag. General manager Dave Ziegler & Co. could pay Jacobs $10.1 million in 2023 and $12.1 million in 2024 with two franchise tags, which is only a little more than what he might expect to get as the guaranteed money on a multi-year deal.”

Considering what the current running back market looks like, tagging Jacbos for the 2023 season might not be the worst strategy as they could continue to develop Zamir White behind him. And with Jacobs struggling to stay healthy for most of his career, it would be a good way to protect themselves financially.

It will be fascinating to see if the Raiders do decide to use the franchise tag Jacobs in the upcoming days. Expect that to be the ultimate result as a long-term deal is not expected to get done before the start of the new league year.


Raiders go quarterback at No. 7 in latest 2023 NFL mock draft by PFF

Story originally appeared on Raiders Wire