Raiders beat writer Jerry McDonald on the future of Michael Bush in Oakland:
"The vibe I’m getting is that the Raiders have zero intention of franchising leading rusher Michael Bush, given their commitment to a normal salary structure and the presence of strong safety Tyvon Branch also as an unrestricted free agent. Coach Dennis Allen has talked up Darren McFadden, which means he’s the feature back, and there’s no way the Raiders commit more than $7 million to a complementary back. And that’s probably what Bush is. He did an admirable job taking over when McFadden’s mid-foot sprain derailed his season, with one of the best games any Raiders’ running back (Marcus, Bo, Napoleon Kaufman, you name it) has ever had again the San Diego Chargers. While it’s conceivable Bush numbers tailed off toward the end of the season because the Raiders became more predictable or the line wasn’t blocking as well, the fact is it happened."
Bush averaged 3.8 ypc in 2011, while Darren McFadden averaged 5.4 ypc before getting injured. The Raiders place so much emphasis in their running game that it would be surprising if they let Bush walk, especially considering McFadden's injury history. Bush is more than capable of being a workhorse back, and if he lands in a good situation, he should be a productive RB2 in 2012.