RB Josh Jacobs expected to return to Raiders before Week 1, per report

Running back Josh Jacobs is expected to return to the Las Vegas Raiders before the team's season opener against the Denver Broncos on Sept. 10, according to a report from Vinny Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

The 25-year-old has been away from the team since he and the Raiders couldn't agree on a long-term contract before the July 17 franchise tag deadline. Jacobs didn't sign the franchise tender, so he isn't under contract. To rejoin the club, he could sign the $10.1 million franchise tag or agree to a modified one-year salary.

Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels was asked about Jacobs' status after the team's 34-17 preseason win over the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday. He said he didn't have an update, but also asserted that Jacobs would need practice time to get game ready — and he has already missed plenty of it.

"I don't have any new news on J.J.," McDaniels said. "I mean, I would say I think that it's important for every player — this is the National Football League, so it's not easy to go out there and just play games and do it at the speed and level that you want to do it at unless you've really kind of had enough opportunity to get yourself ready to do that."

Jacobs led the league last season with 1,653 rushing yards and 2,053 scrimmage yards, recording 12 touchdowns. He also had five games with more than 140 rushing yards and more than one touchdown last year. That was the most in the NFL by a wide margin, as no other player had more than two such performances.

But it's a new season, and McDaniels' comments imply that time is of the essence.

"We've talked all year to our team about nothing carries over from one year to the next. You have to re-establish your individual level of performance and collectively as a unit, and ultimately as a team, we have to establish and re-establish ourselves in terms of what we're going to be about," he said. "So, whether it would be J.J. or somebody else, it's the same thing. Everybody's got to have an opportunity to do that, get re-acclimated to the pace, the speed of things. But again, I have no new information on the whole situation."

In the case of Jacobs' continued absence into the regular season, second-year running back Zamir White is the likely Week 1 starter. He has played through the preseason, recording 83 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries over two games. The Raiders brought in other free agents at running back, as well.