In the days of players trading teams, going for the money, or whining about playing time, it's been a fun ride for Justin Fargas.
Picked up back in the 2003 Draft in the third round, Justin was dropped into a troubled ship, as the Raiders were just starting their nightmare of six years. In the first three years, the Raiders started him only 1 game and he produced under 200 years for that effort.
By the time 2006 came around, some wondered if he would be subject to the same fate as Marques Tuiasosopo, drafted but rarely used. Even in 2006, Fargas was behind LaMont Jordan for lead rushing duties, until an injury allowed Justin a chance to start.
With only six starts, he led the team in 2006....and in 2007, the backfield got a little more crowded with the arrival of Dominic Rhodes from the Colts.
As the season started, LaMont Jordan was getting a lion's share of carries, until an injury against the Miami Dolphins brought Justin Fargas back to the limelight. Fargas would go on to have 1,001 yards on the season, starting only seven games that year.
And of course last year wouldn't be complete without the irony. The Raiders drafted Darren McFadden, freed up Michael Bush, and got rid of both LaMont Jordan and Dominic Rhodes, offering what looked like a healthy rushing tandem.
Who wound up leading this three-headed monster?
Justin Fargas, with 853 yards on the ground.
Now, as the pre-season nears the midpoint and players are working hard to keep their roster spots, some have mentioned that Fargas is running down, running out of time, and that the team has rookies to replace him.
Most notable on the roster is Louis Rankin, who averaged 5.2 yards a carry plus a 19-yard catch.
Replacing him would be a big task....and I hope the team looks long at what they could lose by letting him move on.