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Raiders news: Jack Del Rio talks Marshawn Lynch’s status for Week 1 of preseason

Marshawn Lynch, Raiders
Kirby Lee / USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Raiders have gone from a perennial bottom-feeder in the NFL to arguably one of the best offensive forces in the league in only a few years time with Derek Carr leading the way. This year the team may take the next step with the addition of Marshawn Lynch, but the debut of the Oakland native in silver and black may not happen or may be very limited in Week 1 of the preseason.

Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio recently spoke about his plans for the team’s first preseason game and what he intends to do with Lynch. Del Rio may end up playing his new star running back against the Arizona Cardinals, but it may not be for long, via ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez.

“I know he’s a high-profile guy that people have questions about,” Del Rio said. “I’ll try to do the best I can. We like the way he’s working. I’m not that concerned about seeing a lot of Marshawn in Week 1 of the preseason. I’ll just be honest with you on that.”

Typically, teams in the NFL don’t play their projected starters for an extended period during the preseason until the third week. Some starters can play as the majority of the game or a half during the third game of the preseason meaning the Raiders could wait until that time to put Lynch on the field for the first time in silver and black.

In the meantime, Del Rio and company will focus their efforts on filling out the roster and setting up the depth chart for the 2017 campaign. Jalen Richard and DeAndre Washington will be competing for carries and the opportunity to backup Lynch next season.

Although the Raiders had a solid option at running back last season in one-time Pro Bowler Latavius Murray, Lynch may be a massive upgrade for the team coming out of the backfield. If able to stay healthy and still playing at a high level, Oakland could easily become the best offense in the NFL with opposing defenses struggling to stop Carr and company on a weekly basis.