Raiders RB Josh Jacobs returns to practice after contract holdout: ‘No hard feelings now’

Josh Jacobs led the league in rushing last season, his fourth in the league

It took a long time to get there, but Josh Jacobs seems completely fine with the Las Vegas Raiders.

Jacobs, who held out this preseason before finally signing a one-year deal, is happy to just have the situation behind him with the regular season right around the corner.

“I mean, s***, we’re here. We made it happen, so it ain’t no hard feelings now,” Jacobs said Wednesday, via The Athletic’s Tashan Reed. “It’s a clean slate with me. It was never any hate on each side. I understood it, but at the same time, I understood my value, too. It was just about meeting in the middle.”

Jacobs refused to sign a one-year, $10.1 million franchise tag the Raiders first placed on him after last season. That led to his preseason holdout before the two sides finally agreed to a one-year, $12 million earlier this month.

He officially returned to practice Wednesday, marking his first since last season.

The deal isn’t much more than the one the franchise tag would have paid him. But it gives Jacobs the flexibility to negotiate a new long-term deal next offseason.

“I think it went pretty good for both parties, honestly,” Jacobs said. “One of the hardest things in football to do, man, is watch, you know what I’m saying? At least for a guy like me. And so I was itching to get back. Just to be able to come and make it make sense for both parties, it was definitely huge.”

Josh Jacobs held out this preseason after he declined to sign the franchise tag the Raiders tried to place on him.
Josh Jacobs held out this preseason after he declined to sign the franchise tag the Raiders tried to place on him. (AP/John Locher)

Jacobs led the league with 1,653 rushing yards last season, his fourth with the Raiders. He matched a career-best 12 touchdowns and averaged 97.2 yards per game. Despite his dominant outing, the Raiders went 6-11 and failed to make the playoffs for the fifth time in the past six seasons.

While there has been plenty of issues with running back contracts throughout the league this offseason — just look at Jonathan Taylor’s trade request in Indianapolis — Jacobs is happy to have this behind him.

He’s ready to play again, starting with their Week 1 matchup with the Denver Broncos on Sept. 10. And even though he’s had time off, Jacobs isn’t worried about jumping in this soon to the regular season.

“Physically, I ain’t missing a step. I definitely can say that,” Jacobs said. “The biggest thing for me, really, was coming back mentally just with the playbook and the new plays and all of that. I didn’t want to be behind. But when I came in today, man, I didn’t have any errors. I came in today and I was like, ‘Oh yeah, I remember this.'”