Maurice Jones-Drew will finish 2014 over Darren McFadden as the Oakland Raiders’ featured running back

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Jones-Drew is a better football player than McFadden.

ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez predicts Oakland Raiders running back Darren McFadden will start over Maurice Jones-Drew in Week 1.

The 26-year-old McFadden, who fought a cranky hamstring throughout 2013, inked a one-year deal worth up to $4 million on March 11 to remain a Raider.

McFadden, who can complete the 40-yard dash in 4.33 seconds, handled the pigskin 114 times for 379 yards and five scores over 10 contests last autumn.

A former barroom brawler, DMC also snagged 17 passes for 108 yards.

However, to complement the fragile McFadden, Oakland added the 29-year-old Jones-Drew to their roster last month.

Jones-Drew, who performed with a surgically repaired foot and also battled a balky hamstring, rushed 234 times for 803 yards and five touchdowns over 15 games as a Jacksonville Jaguar.

A three-time All-Pro who captured the 2011 NFL rushing crown, the past Bruin caught 43 balls for 314 yards.

The Jaguars went 4-12 and owned the league’s most inept offense.

Therefore, Jones-Drew’s substandard stats are misleading.

Meanwhile, Oakland finished in the basement of the AFC West and fielded the 24th ranked attack.

Fortunately for Raiders fans, Jones-Drew and McFadden could team to create an explosive backfield.

However, as a human chandelier, McFadden will certainly get injured and miss time on the gridiron.

Football is a collision sport and it’s unfair to criticize a player for getting hurt.

Nevertheless, even if Darren McFadden opens as Oakland’s runner, Maurice Jones-Drew will finish 2014 as the Raiders’ featured carrier.

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