Raiders RB Bush proves he can carry the load

Posted Oct. 11, 2010 @ 4:10 p.m.
Posted By Michael Blunda

All it took was a Darren McFadden hamstring injury for the Raiders to rediscover that they have another great back on the roster: Michael Bush.

Getting the start Sunday with McFadden out, Bush bowled over the Chargers' No. 1-ranked defense for 104 yards and a TD on a massive 26 carries in a 35-27 Oakland victory. Not known as much of a pass catcher, he also added three grabs for 31 yards. Just as he did last season when given an ample workload, Bush showed that he can be a productive workhorse.

The interesting thing here is what the Raiders will do when McFadden returns to health. He was playing the best football of his career before getting hurt in Week Four, rushing for 98 yards per game and 4.6 yards per carry through the first four weeks. Oakland obviously has a lot more invested in McFadden than it does Bush, but benching either one wouldn't make sense considering what each is capable of.

Although McFadden's status for this week's game at San Francisco is not yet known, when he does return to the field, signs point to this situation becoming a dreadful 50-50 timeshare. However, much like the relatively equal backfield split in Carolina has been kind to fantasy owners (at least before this season), this one has the same potential. McFadden's big-play ability means he can do a lot without a ton of touches, while Bush's nose for the endzone makes him a weekly fantasy threat. It's not an ideal scenario, but both would still retain solid fantasy value.