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Del Rio: Running back not a 'glaring need' for Raiders

The Raiders could use more depth at running back, but coach Jack Del Rio says Oakland isn't desperate for help.

"We would like to add somebody in the backfield at some point, but it's not like it's a glaring need," Del Rio said at last week's NFL Annual Meeting, per CSN Bay Area. "We do have a good player there."

Del Rio pointed to Latavius Murray, who finished last season with 1,066 yards on the ground, but saw his yards per carry drop off by more than a yard from 2014.

"It was good," Del Rio said of Murray's campaign. "If you get 1,000 yards, it's an accomplishment, even though it doesn't mean quite what it did when you had 12 games (in a season). It's a milestone, and he was solid. He would tell you there's more out there. He's still just scratching the surface. There's a lot more upside and opportunities to break a tackle or make a guy miss or hit the hole just right. Another year in the system will help him as well."

Del Rio, though, also declined to call Murray his dyed-in-the-wool starter, telling the San Francisco Chronicle: "We're looking for talent. How it shakes out is up to the (players)."

The coach also acknowledged in February that Oakland "didn't run effectively enough" last season, hinting that Murray might be more efficient with a decreased workload.

Meanwhile, general manager Reggie McKenzie told reporters last week that more bodies would be added to a running back group that includes only Taiwan Jones, Roy Helu and George Atkinson behind Murray, saying: "You can't just have one guy getting beat up all year with no help. We'll get some help. We'll get healthy. We'll see how it goes. It's March, so we have some time."

Murray is a big, fast runner who displays moments of explosion, but only a handful of backs carry the load alone in today's NFL. Del Rio wants a powerful ground game, so no matter what he said in Boca Raton, consider Oakland a candidate to pick a runner in the top three rounds of April's draft.

NFL media draft svengali Mike Mayock currently has Ohio State's Ezekiel Elliott atop his rankings at the position, followed by Alabama's Derrick Henry, Utah's Devontae Booker, Louisiana Tech's Kenneth Dixon and C.J. Prosise out of Notre Dame.

Arian Foster, LeGarrette Blount and Ronnie Hillman are also available on the open market, giving the Raiders plenty of options to restock before September.

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