FBG says: Tough matchup. The Oakland Raiders drafted Josh Jacobs in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft with the explicit intention of utilizing him as a bell-cow running back for the foreseeable future. In Jacobs' NFL debut, he mustered 85 yards on 23 carries, good for just 3.7 yards-per-carry. Throughout week one, no other player on Oakland's roster carried the ball more than once. Jacobs is the clear bell-cow, and head coach Jon Gruden has made it clear, he will continue in that role. Jacobs flashed the talent that made him a first-round draft choice throughout the night, but only when the offensive line gave him opportunities. Oakland's offensive line turned in one of the league's worst run-blocking performances of week one against Denver. The lone bright spot on the offensive line was right tackle Trent Brown, who did an adequate job while the rest of the line struggled. The Raiders' success running the football in week two will almost certainly be in spite of the offensive line, not because of it.
Kansas City stopped any Jacksonville attempt at establishing the run before it could even get going in week one by jumping out to an early lead. Playing catch-up, Jacksonville was forced to abandon the run and focus almost exclusively on passing the football to mount a comeback. Jacksonville's running backs only carried the football 14 times in week one, and while Leonard Fournette totaled 66 yards on his 13 attempts, 7 of his attempts went for 3 or fewer yards. Kansas City's defense as a whole did an exceptional job stifling the Jaguars' rushing attack. The most notable performer from the Chiefs' defense in the season opener was linebacker Damien Wilson, who registered four run stops on the day. Defensive tackle Derrick Nnandi, who recorded two-run stops of his own, was also impressive on the defensive line. Kansas City's secondary surprisingly played a significant role in containing Jacksonville's ground game. Safeties Juan Thornhill and Tyrann Mathieu both impressed in run support in their respective debuts for the Kansas City. The Chiefs' new-look defense impressed in week one and will be expected to keep the momentum going here in week two. Establishing the run against the Kansas City Chiefs is shaping up to be a far more onerous task in 2019 than it has been in recent memory.