The Raiders had three picks in the first round of the 2019 draft. Which meant that this offseason they had to make decisions on whether to pick up the fifth year options, which happens prior to each player’s fourth year.
Those three players were Clelin Ferrell, Josh Jacobs, and Johnathan Abram. And the Raiders declined to pick up the options on any of them.
Most thought that if any of them had an outside chance of having their option picked up, it was Jacobs, who the team selected with the 24th overall pick. But with a fifth year salary of around $8 million, even that was a stretch.
The worst thing Jacobs or the others could do is take it personally. For Jacobs’s part he seems to be using it as motivation.
“I’m a firm believer in the work that you put in is going to pay off for itself,” said Jacobs. “I had to be here either way. And this is where I want to be, so I didn’t have no problem with it. It just gave me more reason to come in every day and gel with the guys and work, so that’s how I looked at it.”
It’s important to note that just because a team declines a player’s option, doesn’t automatically mean they will be cutting ties with that player after their rookie contract is up. It just means that prior to that fourth year, they weren’t ready to commit to that player for a fifth year at the salary on his contract.
So, Jacobs could easily go out there and play well enough to have the Raiders offering him a lucrative long term deal after this season. It actually benefits him in that he may also receive long term deals from other teams and get to choose where he plays. In that regard, he could see it as a positive thing. Now it’s in his hands.