Devontae Booker is coming into this season not only to add depth to the Las Vegas Raiders running back room, but also to prove himself to anyone that may have previously doubted his abilities.
Booker signed with the Raiders in May after spending four seasons with AFC West rival Denver. Booker played in all but three games in his four seasons in Denver, and the Utah alum even led the Broncos in rushing yards with more than 600 yards and four touchdowns his rookie season.
Despite his solid production, Booker spent his next three seasons in Denver battling for the starting job at running back in a committee-type system. Booker decided to sign with Las Vegas and enter into another running back battle.
"When I signed here after the draft, I just felt like it was a good opportunity for me to get here and work with these guys in the running back room," Booker said.
Booker had serious odds to beat coming into the Raiders running back competition in Training Camp, having to compete with versatile back Jalen Richard, seven-year veteran Theo Riddick and Raiders third-round pick Lynn Bowden Jr. After releasing Theo Riddick and trading Bowden to the Miami Dolphins on September 5, Booker was able to make the 53-man roster for the Raiders and secure a spot as a backup running back for Josh Jacobs with Richard.
"Just me coming here and working my butt off and us really not having a full offseason with the team and everything, it says a lot about just my work ethic," said Booker. "My expectations for the team is just to get better each day and go out there and just compete and have fun."
With him signing to the Raiders, Booker will also have two opportunities to go up against his former team that drafted him in the fourth round of the 2016 draft. Booker however confirmed there will be no love lost when he steps on the field to face his former team.
"Now that I'm here, shoot, I'm a rival to them. I just got to go out there and do my job."
Head out to Intermountain Healthcare Performance Center for practice as the Raiders prepare for their regular-season opener against the Carolina Panthers.