Las Vegas Raiders | Franchise Sports Media Zamir White
Photo Credit: Trisha LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

New FSM Essential Feature: Zamir White Looking To Emerge As Raiders’ Workhorse

Franchise Sports Media

Josh Jacobs’ absence leaves Zamir White with a golden opportunity to emerge as a key component in the Raiders offense.

Zamir White is looking to emerge as one of the Raiders’ top offensive options.

Las Vegas Raiders | Franchise Sports Media Zamir White
Photo Credit: Trisha LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

A twist of fate, or as the Raiders would probably say a very well-planned out and executed draft plan, has left second-year running back Zamir (Zeus) White with an opportunity of a lifetime hanging right in front of him.

After spending most of last season on special teams, White didn’t see the field much at running back as Josh Jacobs was busy leading the NFL in rushing yards. In doing so in a contract year, Jacobs found himself at a crossroads and has not been at Raiders practice this training camp as he and the Raiders try to work out a new deal.

That leaves a significant hole to fill at running back—an important position on any team, but especially the Raiders. White has taken the opportunity and run with it, putting in as much extra work as possible to improve this offseason.

“Shoot, man, from year one, a lot because of guys like Josh Jacobs, Brandon [Bolden], and Ameer [Abdullah] just coaching me up and being here extra, just going through extra film and extra meetings, and just locking in on stuff like that. So, a lot. “Just ask questions. There’s no question, no dumb questions, no little questions. I just talk to them and just ask them. Because Ameer [Abdullah] and B [Brandon Bolden] are going to help you regardless, but that’s just them. They’re here to help you. So yeah, just ask them, and they’ll say, ‘Yeah, bro, do this and do that. With this front and this read, you do this.’ We just break it down.”

White continued.

“I’m still working on it. I’m not perfect, but nobody’s perfect so, yeah man just keep on working at it every single day. That’s what I do. When I’m done practicing, I catch balls and run routes. Every day I try to get better at it. This year it has eased out some. Just doing the extra meetings, the extra film, the game calmed down, too. So you really just go out there and do your thing, and have fun really. Just don’t think about all the negatives. Just think positive when you’re out there, that’s about it.”

So far, Josh McDaniels likes what he sees from the second-year running back and other second-year players looking to make the often talked about “jump” in performance from season one to season two in the league.

“I mean, there’s a number of guys obviously that are coming into their second year for us. You mentioned a couple of them, but obviously, we have a lot of players that are entering their second year. You hope for that, what you just mentioned. Our job is to try to get them to improve every year, regardless of which year it is two to three, three to four, one to two, four to five, seven to 10, whatever it is. So, we’ll try to do the best we can.

McDaniels continued.

I know that our guys that are coming into their second year spent a lot of time at the facility this offseason and really invested themselves in a full offseason program. Because when you’re a rookie, you come in a little later, about a month later than the veterans do. So, I think a lot of the reasons why you see some of those jumps is they actually get a full year. They actually understand what OTAs is. They understand what minicamp is. They understand what training camp is like. So their understanding, their wisdom, they have some now because they’ve gone through it. So, looking forward to all those guys getting out there, competing, and improving.”

Zamir White has a huge fan in Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels.

White will have an expanded role with Josh Jacobs holding out. But White is used to proving himself in a crowded room

Zamir White will be one of the Raiders’ top running backs as long as Josh Jacobs is holding out, and probably be his top backup once he returns. 

Las Vegas Raiders | Franchise Sports Media Zamir White
Photo Credit: Trisha LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

Josh McDaniels and the Raiders make it no secret that a strong, physical run game isn’t just in the game plan but is part of the team’s identity. White, who went to one of the most well-known college football programs for running backs, says his days in the University of Georgia’s offense have helped with his transition.

“At Georgia, we were a downhill, go get it offense. Here it’s the same way. Runs and all that stuff for our vertical cuts and stuff like that and just being physical.”

White’s similar collegiate experience at Georgia helped him not only on the field, in terms of playing style but off the field. When White arrived in Georgia, he entered a loaded running back room that included future NFL running backs James Cook and D’Andre Swift, respectively. Coincidentally, the Raiders also helped White and their defense when they drafted talented safety Chris Smith, who played with White at Georgia.

“Chris [Smith] is my dog, man, from Georgia. Really me and are Chris the same age, same high school class and all that. So we’ve been close since like ninth grade, so we’re really boys. So just seeing him come here with me, I was like, ‘Yeah, finally. Finally we got a Dog on the team with me. We good now. I’m alright.'”

White continued.

“Honestly, just learn. Just bits and bits and pieces from guys like [Chris] Smith, Josh Jacobs, just learn from those guys. Those guys have been there and done that. Where they come from with the game, just learn from them and just go off that. Head down and keep on working.”

There has only been one preseason game, so there is only so much that can be taken away from the game. However, if White can play anything close to how he did at Georgia, it looks like the Raiders‘ plan of running back by committee and potentially saving money at the running back position could pay off in the end.

Zamir White could save the Raiders millions of dollars.

– Zeke Trezevant – Franchise Sports Media

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