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☠ ☠ ☠ Official 2021 Las Vegas Raiders thread ☠ ☠ ☠ - only 3.5 more months of talking about draft reaches until real football arrives


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This is why it pays to wait before passing judgement on all deals. Based on the breakdown you have here, I love the deal too. Drake is a fantastic compliment to Jacobs.

By position: QB - we're fine with Carr.  He's at least very good and possibly great.  He's closer to 2016 form than 2019 and that's a good thing.  I'd be ok if we took a shot at a true franchise

I hope not!   Stompin is one of the better posters on this board.  

Posted (edited)

Oh get over yourself if they had taken him and he wasn't cleared you'd be crying about wasted picks.  There's no winning against you when you have hindsight on your side.

I'd love to have Rodgers.  Draft picks are a crapshoot anyway and we can recover something for Carr - if NYJ can get a 2 and 4 for Darnold we'd get more for Carr.  Give up a 1st and 2nd and go see what kind of noise we can make for 3-4 years.  Tank for a year when he's toast and draft Quinn Ewers, 3 time Heisman Trophy winner and 3 time National Champion QB from THE Ohio State University.

Edited by Hankmoody
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  • Hankmoody changed the title to ☠ ☠ ☠ Official 2021 Las Vegas Raiders thread ☠ ☠ ☠ - another draft reach caused the sky to fall
Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Hankmoody said:

Oh get over yourself if they had taken him and he wasn't cleared you'd be crying about wasted picks.  There's no winning against you when you have hindsight on your side.

I'd love to have Rodgers.  Draft picks are a crapshoot anyway and we can recover something for Carr - if NYJ can get a 2 and 4 for Darnold we'd get more for Carr.  Give up a 1st and 2nd and go see what kind of noise we can make for 3-4 years.  Tank for a year when he's toast and draft Quinn Ewers, 3 time Heisman Trophy winner and 3 time National Champion QB from THE Ohio State University.

Are you talking to me?  I must not have been clear. I’m happy they didn’t take JoK.  I was adding the info to the thread, since it explained his falling out of the first.  
 

there was a (deserved)tongue in cheek jab at the raiders for passing on an injured player. 
 

 

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 Leatherman still feels like a reach at 17 but we do have Miller as proof that Gruden/Mayock/Cable can choose tackles.   If they had Leatherman ranked as the best OT available then I am trusting their judgement.    Chad will be happy not to have to listen to my whining about the draft class for 12 months. It was easy to get over that potential reach when Moehrig was snagged on day 2.    It is way too early to determine that it was a successful draft but at least it wasn’t a disaster like last year.  

I like all the swings taken on players that should help the D.   God knows that D needs help.   Some of those players are probably a year away from possibly contributing on D but that is expected for those mid to late round picks   

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4 hours ago, DA RAIDERS said:

Are you talking to me?  I must not have been clear. I’m happy they didn’t take JoK.  I was adding the info to the thread, since it explained his falling out of the first.  
 

there was a (deserved)tongue in cheek jab at the raiders for passing on an injured player. 
 

 

I was, my apologies for misreading your intent.  You've been highly critical of them and the grudock comment appeared to be pejorative.  I was wanting them to take him too but this does indeed shed some light and despite it being cleared up, I'm glad they stuck to their info.  Even moreso since we got Moehrig instead.

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Raiders signed CB Casey Hayward, formerly of the Chargers. 

Hayward was an elite corner from 2016 to 2019 but was hampered by injuries last year and ultimately became a casualty this offseason. If he returns in full form, the signing will look like a steal in hindsight. Casey also gets to reunite with Raiders DC Gus Bradley, who was his coordinator for four years with the Chargers. With the rookies distributed via the draft, teams were likely able to assess their remaining needs and Vegas identified corner as one of their gaps. Pro Football Focus ranked Vegas as a bottom-five coverage unit last year and the Raiders spent far more draft capital on safety than cornerback. Even if Casey is past his prime, this signing should greatly boost the Vegas secondary. 

SOURCE: Josina Anderson on Twitter

May 4, 2021, 5:52 PM ET

 

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5 hours ago, DocHolliday said:

 Leatherman still feels like a reach at 17 but we do have Miller as proof that Gruden/Mayock/Cable can choose tackles.   If they had Leatherman ranked as the best OT available then I am trusting their judgement.    Chad will be happy not to have to listen to my whining about the draft class for 12 months. It was easy to get over that potential reach when Moehrig was snagged on day 2.    It is way too early to determine that it was a successful draft but at least it wasn’t a disaster like last year.  

I like all the swings taken on players that should help the D.   God knows that D needs help.   Some of those players are probably a year away from possibly contributing on D but that is expected for those mid to late round picks   

Yea, Leatherwood isn't a consensus top guy. Neither was Miller. And they have hit pretty much on most of their FA's that have brought in as well. Incognito and Good are, well, good examples. From what I can see, they love his versatility, which is something they very much covet in Oline. The kid they drafted late can also play C and G. 

Moehrig was a godsend. Sometimes I get frustrated because some teams just seem to have the right players fall to them in their laps... Moehrig feels like that for me. My biggest need was FS. I think he is the best FS in the draft. The other need we really had was RT and we got that in Leatherwood. From there, we beefed up the defense like everyone wanted. 

I like what they did. I see the logic in what they did. I trust their talent eval on Leatherwood. I think we got better on defense through the FA and draft. 

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3 hours ago, Hankmoody said:

I was, my apologies for misreading your intent.  You've been highly critical of them and the grudock comment appeared to be pejorative.  I was wanting them to take him too but this does indeed shed some light and despite it being cleared up, I'm glad they stuck to their info.  Even moreso since we got Moehrig instead.

Pejorative?  We raider fans aren’t supposed to use words like dat. 😜  

i was as high, or higher, on JoK than anyone in this thread. He was my choice at 17. I was mystified as to why he fell. Now we know. 

I think they are super thin at LB.  hopefully the grip of unproven dudes, can step up and provide the needed depth.  we shall see

 

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2 hours ago, Chadstroma said:

A healthy Casey Hayward is HUGE

Sherman was also rumored to have something to do with the raiders. Who else has been connected to Bradley that may be of interest in the future I wonder

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3 hours ago, Chadstroma said:

Yea, Leatherwood isn't a consensus top guy. Neither was Miller. And they have hit pretty much on most of their FA's that have brought in as well. Incognito and Good are, well, good examples. From what I can see, they love his versatility, which is something they very much covet in Oline. The kid they drafted late can also play C and G. 

Moehrig was a godsend. Sometimes I get frustrated because some teams just seem to have the right players fall to them in their laps... Moehrig feels like that for me. My biggest need was FS. I think he is the best FS in the draft. The other need we really had was RT and we got that in Leatherwood. From there, we beefed up the defense like everyone wanted. 

I like what they did. I see the logic in what they did. I trust their talent eval on Leatherwood. I think we got better on defense through the FA and draft. 

As critical as I’ve been of Gruyock's draft last year, I do trust their OL instincts for sure. 

As for the bolded, he only half fell into our laps. The other half was the Raiders jumping up a few picks to GRAB him! Great move by the front office for sure. 

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13 hours ago, Chadstroma said:

A healthy Casey Hayward is HUGE

Agreed.  The health is the question.   Worse case, the young CBs have a great player to learn from.   

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I was thinking... say the Rodgers thing continues down the path of the Packers either having him retire or trade him for peanuts. 
I am still not sure I would want him. It may sound crazy. I mean, he is a HOF QB still playing at peak performance. 
So why? I seem to remember hearing that he is estranged from his family. I think it was phrased as he does not talk to them. Now, that isn't an issue by itself. Family can be crazy. But then didn't he run McCarthy out of town? And now the GM is the issue? I mean, is seems to me the common theme here is... him. 

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34 minutes ago, Faust said:

I could have written the article.   It seems to be right on the money.  Hoping this is the year that the draft picks and FA signings  hit so that this story has a better ending a year from now.   Unfortunately, even if LV has improved, is it enough to overtake KC or stay in front of the improving and talented Chargers?     

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Comp-pick analysis: A slick move by the Raiders' front office and a little bit of luck should net the team a compensatory selection. In November, the Falcons cut former first-rounder McKinley, who was then claimed and cut by both the Bengals and 49ers after failing his physicals. The Raiders claimed him and sent him straight to injured reserve, where he stayed for the season until being signed by the Browns in free agency. With four departures and three signings, the shrewd McKinley move should become a sixth-round pick.

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Signed Marquel Harrell. Originally an undrafted FA last year that spent the off season with the Bills, was cut and then spent some time on their practice squad. 

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8 minutes ago, Chadstroma said:

Comp-pick analysis: A slick move by the Raiders' front office and a little bit of luck should net the team a compensatory selection. In November, the Falcons cut former first-rounder McKinley, who was then claimed and cut by both the Bengals and 49ers after failing his physicals. The Raiders claimed him and sent him straight to injured reserve, where he stayed for the season until being signed by the Browns in free agency. With four departures and three signings, the shrewd McKinley move should become a sixth-round pick.

That was an interesting article.  It explains the comp process pretty well. So as I understand it, if the raiders don’t pick up anyone else of significance, they’ll get the 6th rounder. Well done mayock. 

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Current CB's on the roster who will fight for roster spots. 

Casey Hayward

Nate Hobbs

Rasul Douglas

Travyon Mullen

Damon Arnette

Nevin Lawson

Amik Robertson

Isaiah Johnson

Keisean Nixon

Mullen and Arnette are locks. Hayward should will if healthy and not extremely slowed by age/injury. Douglas is quality vet depth.

Hobbs isn't that high of a pick that they won't cut him if he doesn't show something. 

Nixon has done well on ST. 

Robertson was no where last year, even when we were extremely thin at CB but maybe they want to develop him more?

Lawson should be cut and with having the suspension making it an even bigger uphill battle for him. 

Johnson showed some promise at times. 

It will be an interesting position group to keep an eye on this off season. 

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2 minutes ago, DA RAIDERS said:

That was an interesting article.  It explains the comp process pretty well. So as I understand it, if the raiders don’t pick up anyone else of significance, they’ll get the 6th rounder. Well done mayock. 

Kind of makes sense of having McKinley on the roster but not and then not resigning him (as I had thought that that was the gameplan and scratched my head when he was signed away)

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Teams don't think like that, they operate in the vacuum of the moment.  They signed Tak simply because the shot to get something out of him once healthy was worth the cash and cap space consumed in that moment/contract.  He's a former first rounder so why not grab him and see what happens.  He's the $1 waiver wire bid.  When it came time to re-up and someone bid more on him in RFA they passed and took their (potential) compensation instead of throwing bigger money at it.  Simple as that.

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  • Hankmoody changed the title to ☠ ☠ ☠ Official 2021 Las Vegas Raiders thread ☠ ☠ ☠ - Kiper liked two of our draft picks all is well
5 hours ago, Hankmoody said:

Teams don't think like that, they operate in the vacuum of the moment.  They signed Tak simply because the shot to get something out of him once healthy was worth the cash and cap space consumed in that moment/contract.  He's a former first rounder so why not grab him and see what happens.  He's the $1 waiver wire bid.  When it came time to re-up and someone bid more on him in RFA they passed and took their (potential) compensation instead of throwing bigger money at it.  Simple as that.

I disagree. 

The Pat's have clearly used the comp picks to their advantage for years. I think other teams are taking that into consideration now. 

With McKinley, if he healed up and was worth something great. If not, then we get a comp pick. I think that is part of the thinking process for sure. 

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Disagree all you want but no way the comp pick factors into the original decision.  It's not a sure thing, they might not even get it if they sign more than they lose or if he doesn't sign at all, and they aren't going to waste money/trainers/strength and conditioning/coaching resources hoping for it.

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1 hour ago, Hankmoody said:

Disagree all you want but no way the comp pick factors into the original decision.  It's not a sure thing, they might not even get it if they sign more than they lose or if he doesn't sign at all, and they aren't going to waste money/trainers/strength and conditioning/coaching resources hoping for it.

The chance of him play..... nevermind, I don't care. You are right. 

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On 5/6/2021 at 7:01 PM, Chadstroma said:

Current CB's on the roster who will fight for roster spots. 

Casey Hayward

Nate Hobbs

Rasul Douglas

Travyon Mullen

Damon Arnette

Nevin Lawson

Amik Robertson

Isaiah Johnson

Keisean Nixon

Mullen and Arnette are locks. Hayward should will if healthy and not extremely slowed by age/injury. Douglas is quality vet depth.

Hobbs isn't that high of a pick that they won't cut him if he doesn't show something. 

Nixon has done well on ST. 

Robertson was no where last year, even when we were extremely thin at CB but maybe they want to develop him more?

Lawson should be cut and with having the suspension making it an even bigger uphill battle for him. 

Johnson showed some promise at times. 

It will be an interesting position group to keep an eye on this off season. 

Longing for the days when we had MIke Haynes (HOF) and Lester Hayes (should BE in the HOF) on the corners (sigh) .  

Just hope that Arnette can step it up and live up to that first round pick.   

 

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Posted (edited)
On 5/6/2021 at 7:01 PM, Chadstroma said:

Current CB's on the roster who will fight for roster spots. 

Casey Hayward

Nate Hobbs

Travyon Mullen

Damon Arnette

Amik Robertson

Isaiah Johnson

That's what I am hoping for.

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Former NFL GM on Raiders RT Alex Leatherwood: 'No problem picking him in the first round"

Marcus Mosher 

May 8, 2021 12:45 pm

One of the most controversial picks of the entire draft came at No. 17. Needing a right tackle, the Raiders selected Alabama’s Alex Leatherwood, who played most of his career at left tackle.

According to most draftniks and experts, they believe the Raiders reached on Leatherwood by an entire round. Others believed that he should have been picked in the late-20s or early 30s, rather than at No. 17. But that’s not the opinion of everyone around league circles.

In a recent article by Mike Sando of The Athletic, he had various NFL decision-makers and executives comment on each team’s draft class. When it came to the Raiders, former NFL GM Randy Mueller was actually very complimentary of their class, saying that Leatherwood wasn’t a reach at all.

In fact, he would have had no problem if a team would have selected Leatherwood inside the top 10. Here is a snippet of his comments:

“I have seen some places that have him as their 8th or 10th tackle. That is crazy. I saw Leatherwood at the end of the season against top talent, and I’d have no problem picking him in the first round and no problem picking him in the top 10.”

Leatherwood does check nearly every box that you would want in a starting right tackle. He has a ton of experience playing in the SEC. He made starts at both tackle and guard and you can watch him face the nation’s top pass rushers week after week. On top of his experience, he has outstanding size, length and athleticism. Of all the tackles drafted in the top-100, no player has his combination of athleticism and arm length.

As Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden stated post-draft, they aren’t interested in winning any offseason awards. Instead, they just want to build the best team possible. Leatherwood allows them to do so as he is a perfect fit with offensive line coach Tom Cable.

Don’t be surprised if Leatherwood not only surprises people in 2021, but outperforms his draft position. He is clearly talented and is a fantastic scheme fit in Gruden’s offense.

 

 

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Don't Laugh Now, Raiders Are in the AFC Playoff Hunt After 2021 Offseason

MAURICE MOTONMAY 8, 2021259

Justin Edmonds/Associated Press

The Las Vegas Raiders' offseason has drawn widespread criticism and even confused some NFL analysts.

"I don't understand anything the Raiders are doing," ESPN's Dan Graziano tweeted March 18.

By the time Graziano made that comment, the Raiders had traded right tackle Trent Brown, center Rodney Hudson, guard Gabe Jackson and signed running back Kenyan Drake to a two-year, $11 million deal.

Head coach Jon Gruden broke up what many viewed to be the team's strongest unit in the offensive line and then invested a relatively significant amount of money in a position that also appeared in good shape with 2019 first-round pick Josh Jacobs already in the backfield.

While that goes against the grain in what many consider a passing league, Gruden may take a page out of the Cleveland Browns' offensive formula. The Raiders' running back duo could pose a challenge to Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt as one of the league's best backfield tandems. 

Dating back to his last two years as a head coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, four of Gruden's last five offenses have ranked 11th in total rush attempts. We shouldn't be surprised if Vegas lists within the top five for that category in 2021.

No one criticized the Browns' run-heavy attack while it helped lead the franchise to its first playoff berth since 2002. Jacobs and Drake can re-establish a physical identity for Gruden's offense—one that faded when the team recorded fewer than 90 rushing yards in every game during a 1-3 stretch between Weeks 11 and 14 last year. 

We cannot overlook the question marks and changes across the Raiders offensive line, though.

Hudson's departure is a blow to the unit. Andre James has a lot to prove as the three-time Pro Bowler's replacement. He's only played 116 offensive snaps, but the Raiders signed him to a three-year, $12.5 million extension after dealing Hudson and clearly have high hopes for his future.

Richie Incognito should reclaim his starting spot at left guard, but he's missed 18 games since signing with the Raiders in 2019. Coming off foot surgery, the savvy veteran turns 38 years old in July. John Simpson, who's played 252 offensive snaps, may need to join the first unit if Incognito shows decline or his body doesn't hold up through a 17-game schedule. 

On the flip side, Vegas saved $5.5 million and swapped out Jackson, an average guard, for another decent player at the position in Denzelle Good. If the Raiders kept the former, they would've been on the hook to pay him $9.6 million. Brown missed as many games as he played for the Silver and Black over the last two seasons. In terms of availability, rookie first-rounder Alex Leatherwood provides stability at right tackle after making 41 consecutive starts as a collegian. 

While some viewed Leatherwood as a reach with the 17th pick, general manager Mike Mayock said he rejected a low-ball trade offer from a team that had a need at tackle. Vegas went with the 2020 Outland Trophy winner, which isn't a bad choice when you consider the 6'5", 312-pounder's run-blocking ability, which will help Gruden establish his style of offense.

Despite a likely focus on the run, quarterback Derek Carr isn't a game manager in this system. He's developed a strong rapport with tight end Darren Waller, who's been a rising star over the past two seasons, catching 197 passes for 2,341 yards and 12 touchdowns in that span.

The Raiders' reconstructed ground attack could take some pressure off Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards, a pair of receivers who are expected to take a second-year leap. In 2020, Nelson Agholor emerged as the team's lead wideout, but he signed with the New England Patriots this offseason.

If healthy, Ruggs and Edwards should see more targets. They missed seven combined games last season.

As a rookie, Ruggs had some flashes, including a 118-yard performance that included a touchdown against the Kansas City Chiefs in a Week 5 win. He also averaged 17.4 yards per reception.

Carr has played well with bigger pass-catchers, going back to his time with wideout Davante Adams (6'1", 215 lbs) at Fresno State and wideout Michael Crabtree (6'1", 215 lbs) between the 2015 and 2017 terms. Tight end Jared Cook (6'5", 245 lbs) also had his first Pro Bowl season while playing with Carr in 2018, and currently Waller (6'6", 255 lbs) plays a starring role in the Raiders offense.

At 6'3", 212 pounds, Edwards can become a security blanket for Carr. He caught a 26-yard touchdown pass in the 2020 season finale, which may be the beginning of a budding connection with his quarterback.

Carr has improved in all three of his years under Gruden. If he maintains his strong connection with Waller and slot receiver Hunter Renfrow, the Raiders would have enough offensive balance with Ruggs and Edwards making solid contributions. Neither of the two second-year wideouts has to become a star in a run-first attack along with arguably the NFL's best pass-catching tight end not named Travis Kelce.

The Raiders offense has its faults, though. In 2020, Vegas lost the most fumbles (16), tied for fifth in turnovers (26) and ranked 23rd in red-zone scoring. Even with Carr's recent improvements, he's not a dynamic top-tier or All-Pro quarterback. Like the majority of players at his position, the 30-year-old signal-caller needs a fair amount of help to lead his squad to the playoffs.

Part of that help would be solid play on the defensive side of the ball, and Carr finally may play with a defense that ranks higher than 20th in scoring for the first time in his career. Gruden hired defensive coordinator Gus Bradley this offseason to replace Paul Guenther, who had the position for the last three seasons.

On Guenther's watch, the Silver and Black fielded two of their all-time worst defenses in terms of points allowed (2018 and 2020). As the defensive coordinator for the Los Angeles Chargers between 2017 and 2020, Bradley's units ranked 14th or better in scoring for three campaigns (top 10 in two terms).

In an NBC Sports EDGE segment, Warren Sharp questioned the Raiders' talent evaluation process, particularly for defensive backs over the last five years: 

Well, Bradley may tap into the potential of the Raiders' young defensive backs, which bodes well for safety Johnathan Abram, cornerback Damon Arnette and slot cover man Amik Robertson.

Bradley has developed strong secondary units dating back to his time with the Seattle Seahawks during the rise of the Legion of Boom. He helped develop Richard Sherman, who came out of Stanford as a fifth-round pick. Under his tutelage, Derwin James became a Pro Bowl and All-Pro rookie in 2018. 

In all four of his seasons with the Chargers, Bradley put together a top-10 pass defense. Among the new Raiders defensive backs, he's going to work with his lead cornerback from Los Angeles in Casey Hayward and a promising rookie safety in Tre'von Moehrig. The TCU standout had 26 pass breakups and interceptions combined since 2019, the joint-second-most of any collegiate player, per Pro Football Focus:

Bradley also reunites with edge-rusher Yannick Ngakoue, one of his former Jacksonville Jaguars players who's bought into the system. In sack production, the Pro Bowl defender finds himself on a short list with a former Raiders edge-rusher and a three-time Defensive Player of the Year: 

We could also see Cory Littleton return to Pro Bowl form under Bradley. The sixth-year linebacker started to show signs of improvement with more run stops in the final three weeks of the last season following Guenther's dismissal. The addition of Quinton Jefferson and the return of David Irving for a full season could also be enough to help Johnathan Hankins patch up the front-line run defense.


On paper, the Raiders did lose some notable veterans from last year's team. Leatherwood may not have listed in the first round of a majority of mock drafts, and the Raiders' recent draft history leaves much to be desired. 

However, offensive line coach Tom Cable has done a good job with left tackle Kolton Miller, a first-rounder from the 2018 draft class who was also considered a reach. On defense, Bradley has a more extensive and accomplished resume than Guenther, and the presence of a decent defense should allow the offense more margin for error. 

At 8-8, the Raiders were the only top-10 scoring team to miss the 2020 playoffs. This year, they should be able to win some games with solid defensive performances. Furthermore, Bradley and Cable have earned the benefit of the doubt in their abilities to develop young talent, which bodes well for players who will need to take on bigger roles or contribute early. 

The Raiders can fare well in division competition, which is a solid foundation for a postseason run. Last year, they went 4-2 against AFC West opponents with an impressive win over the Chiefs.

Despite the buzz around Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert, he hasn't performed in a full stadium on the road. We don't know how a live crowd could affect his performances. Secondly, he has a first-year head coach in Brandon Staley and a new offensive coordinator in Joe Lombardi who fielded the 18th- and 22nd-ranked scoring offenses in the 2014 and 2015 seasons with the Detroit Lions. 

Although the Denver Broncos are connected to Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers in the rumor mill, they currently have an uninspiring open competition at the position between Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater. Neither signal-caller has thrown for more than 16 touchdowns in a single season despite possessing a combined eight years in the league.

Before you dismiss the Raiders as a team headed in the wrong direction because of their offseason moves, take a deeper look at what they've done with changes on the defensive side of the ball and how Gruden runs his offense. It'll all make sense. This is a club that's still in the playoff hunt.

 

 

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Guys... I am telling you... don't be surprised if Solomon Thomas doesn't become Waller part 2. 

Meaning, a guy with clear talent and didn't quite work out to the point the rest of the league pretty much writes them off or doesn't expect much and comes in and becomes elite at their position. 

I really do believe Thomas will be a difference maker at a DT (his position that is a better fit than DE) and fulfill his promise of being drafted 3rd overall a few years ago. He had a rough few years with the Niners that beyond his playing out of position, dealt with his sisters suicide and injuries as well. 

Mark it... be will be somewhere between a difference making DT that gets consideration for an alternate pro bowl nod to being an elite top 5 player at his position this year. 

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Raiders new CB Casey Hayward deal cheaper than FS Jeff Heath was set to make

Levi Damien 

May 10, 2021 10:58 am

Heading into the draft, there were still a few solid veterans on the market at the cornerback position. And many were still calling for the Raiders to make a move on one of them. The two names that were most associated with the Raiders were Casey Hayward and Richard Sherman, mainly because both played under Raiders’ new defensive coordinator, Gus Bradley.

The problem was, the Raiders had no cap room to add anyone. So, if they were to add someone, it would mean someone else had to go. And in order for the team to get a handle on just who should stay and who should go, they had to wait to see what they landed in the draft.

What they landed was the consensus best safety in the draft after trading up from No. 48 to No. 43 in the second round. With Trevon Moehrig now a Raider, it made Jeff Heath expendable. And days after the draft had concluded, they reeled in one of those veteran free agents still on the market, landing Casey Hayward and cutting Heath.

Heath’s release freed up $3.15 million in cap room in order to make it possible to sign Hayward.

With little to no wiggle room in terms of cap space for the Raiders, the details of Hayward’s deal pretty much had to be at very least an even swap. Turns out Heyward’s initial deal is slightly more affordable.

The former Pro Bowl cornerback will make a reported $2.5 million this season with incentives that could max out at $4 million.

The net savings in terms of the cap hit right now is $650K. That seems like a pretty good deal for a longtime starter and former Pro Bowler who has been a key part of Bradley’s top-10 pass defense with the Chargers for four seasons.

Hayward will compete with Damon Arnette and Rasul Douglas for one of the Raiders’ starting cornerback jobs alongside Trayvon Mullen.

 

 

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Report: Raiders “Had Intel” That Ravens Were Targeting Alex Leatherwood in Round One

 

Raiders’ GM Mike Mayock has gone on record with some of the details to why Alex Leatherwood pick made sense with the no. 17 overall pick. One detail, though, that he didn’t divulge is that the Raiders apparently had information on another team looking at Leatherwood in round one.

According to Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer, the Raiders were trying to stay ahead of Baltimore in the first round because the Ravens were believed to be targeting Leatherwood.

“They liked the makeup of Leatherwood vs. Christian Darrisaw (who was widely seen predraft as likely to go well before Leatherwood would),” Breer reported on the Raiders on Monday. “Leatherwood was a captain, never in trouble and part of a national champion, while there were questions on Darrisaw’s toughness, grit and ability as a run blocker. Second, they saw a guy whose ’19 tape would absolutely justify a first-round pick, before he, admittedly, slipped a little in ’20. And third, they had intel that Baltimore, with two picks late in the first round, was on Leatherwood, meaning absent a trade down a few slots, it would’ve been pretty hard for them to land him elsewhere.”

For what it’s worth, there was a separate report last week that linked Baltimore to Leatherwood. So assuming the information was good, it sounds like the Raiders understood other teams’ draft boards a little better than they have been given credit.

Even if Leatherwood was drafted a few spots higher than his expected draft position, the Raiders chose the ideal position group to gamble on. OL coach Tom Cable has done very well with the Raiders’ offensive line over the past few years. Remember, Jon Gruden and the gang were similarly criticized for drafting Kolton Miller in the first round three years ago. The “Miller project” panned out very well and if all goes as planned, the “Leatherwood project” will, too.

 

 

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Raiders FS Trevor Moehrig named 'prototypical' safety for current NFL

One of the biggest reasons why Trevon Moehrig was the top-rated safety by so many draftniks is due to his ideal size and speed. At 6’1, 202 pounds, Moehrig has the size to play in the box, but the 4.52 speed to play as a free safety.

In a recent article by Kristopher Knox of Bleacher Report, he named each team’s best value pick in the 2021 NFL draft. For the Raiders, it was none other than Moehrig. But here is why Knox believes he is a great fit at safety in today’s NFL:

“Moehrig is pretty close to a prototypical safety for today’s NFL. Although he may be light a few pounds, he brings it in the run game. When tackling, he meets the ball-carrier for minimal to no extra yards gained. He is a field general, always pointing and communicating with the defense.”

Moehrig will likely be a free safety with the Raiders, but that doesn’t mean he can’t do more. It’s one of the biggest reasons why he was such a highly-valued prospect in this year’s draft. He can cover. He can tackle. And he has the size and physicality to match up with tight ends.

Look for new defensive coordinator Gus Bradley to use Moehrig all over the field ala Derwin James in Los Angeles. He isn’t quite the same athlete as James, but he can do a lot of the same things on the field. Moehrig should be a Day 1 starter for the Raiders and a quality player right away.

 

 

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Kyle Wilber among Raiders remaining free agents

Las Vegas has four unsigned free agents

By Bill Williamson@BWilliamsonNFL  May 10, 2021, 2:25pm PDT 

It has been another dizzying offseason of Las Vegas Raiders’ roster moves.

Last week, cornerback Casey Hayward became the 17th free agent that the Raiders either signed from another team or re-signed from their own roster. The Raiders saw five free agents sign elsewhere, and they cut five veterans and traded three players.

As the smoke clears, there are four remaining Las Vegas free agents from the 2020 roster.

Let’s look at them and see if they may return:

Kyle Wilber:
I’m somewhat surprised the Raiders haven’t brought Wilber back. He has been a special teams stalwart for them and special teams coach Rich Bisaccia is a big fan of his. I wouldn’t be shocked if we see Wilber brought back at some point.

Vic Beasley:
Beasley was signed during the 2020 season as the Raiders were desperate for pass rush help. Beasley played in five games with the Raiders and had one tackle. The only way I can see him coming back if there are multiple injuries at the position.

Daryl Worley:
Worley played two games for the Raiders last season. They are overloaded at cornerback and I don’t see him coming back any time soon.

Sam Young:
The offensive lineman played 11 games and started seven games for Las Vegas last season. Young’s biggest problem was staying healthy. I can see the Raiders wanting to bring Young back as a depth piece behind rookie starting right tackle Alex Leatherwood.

 

I don't want to see Worley or Young back. If they do come back that tells me we got decimated with injury. Beasley... we didn't see anything from him after falling out in Tenn and only having that one year in Atl. But that one year was a nice one. I would keep him on the radar but I see no reason to bring back. Wilber is a ST guy and we should be able to fill that need elsewhere. 

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These are the 20 players Raiders fielding for rookie minicamp this weekend

Levi Damien

Sat, May 8, 2021

Friday was the first day of the Raiders rookie minicamp. Well, minicamps, plural. This is the first weekend in which features primarily the team’s ten undrafted rookies.

The Raiders are allowed to field up to 20 players, so they filled out their allotted number with five first-year players and five tryout players.

UDFAs

Matt Bushman, TE, BYU
Shaun Crawford, CB, Notre Dame
Garrett Groshek, RB, Wisconsin
Devery Hamilton, OT, Duke
TJ Morrison, DB, Stony Brook
Trey Ragas, RB, Louisville
Max Richardson, LB, Boston College
Darius Stills, DT, West Virginia
Dillon Stoner, WR, Oklahoma State
DJ Turner, WR, Pittsburgh

First-year players

OL Kamaal Seymour
G Marquel Harrell
TE Nick Bowers
DE Gerri Green
DB Kemah Siverand

Tryout players

Isiah Brown, DB, FIU
Austin Carr, WR, Northwestern
Case Cookus, QB, Northern Arizona
Brandon Williams, CB, Texas A&M

There was a fifth tryout player on the field Friday who has not yet been revealed.

The members of their draft class are not present, working with coaches virtually.

 

 

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NFL Draft Expert Talks Las Vegas Raiders Haul

The Las Vegas Raiders had a terrific 2021 NFL Draft, and we spoke to an expert to analyze the haul of the Silver and Black

JAIRO ALVARADO

UPDATED:

MAY 10, 2021

The Las Vegas Raiders went after their problems on defense by selecting five defensive players in the 2021 NFL draft.

All of the players selected by the Raiders were graded higher than their anticipated draft pick.

Zack Patraw, the President of the NFL Draft Bible, joined the "Pritch & Clay" morning show with guest host Hondo Carpenter. Carpenter serves as the Editor and Publisher of Sports Illustrated's Raider Maven on Raider Nation Radio (LINK TO LISTEN LIVE). He let us know what he thought about the Raiders' defensive picks.

Patraw went in-depth on how he believes the Raiders might have gotten the most steals of the draft.

"I was extremely surprised to see (Trevon Moehrig) in the second round, first of all, I've had Richie Grant as my top overall safety, and then Trevon Moehrig right beneath him," Patraw said. "They were neck and neck when you look at my grading scale for those two guys. I was extremely surprised to see him fall to 43."

Despite the cynics' attack of the Raiders haul of fresh talent, Patraw saw things differently. "When you look at draft needs for other teams, you see Richie Grant go and then Trayvon there--that could have been the steal of the draft."

As surprised as Patraw was on seeing Moehrig in the second-round, it was a no-brainer for the Raiders to move up and get him, resulting in what can be the steal of the draft.

Moehrig was one of the top two safeties in this year's draft. Another first-round grade resulted in being selected in the second round.

Malcolm Koonce was another highly praised Raider player, per Patraw. Some teams had him as a late first-round draftee to the third round, where the Raiders selected him.

"I think he needs to get a little bit more strength, build up some muscle mass, become a little bit better in the running game. "But when you look at it, when you look at him from a pass rushing standpoint, it's really hard not to see what type of player that kid can become," said Patraw on having no denial of the skills Koonce possesses but needs to get a bit bigger and stronger.

The NFL Draft Bible does not like to give an A-B-C type of grade; they prefer to provide a pass-fail kind of grade because there's no way of grading them until a few years down the road, if and when they develop.

Alex Leatherwood: "That's a great pick, high potential type of tackle. Trayvon Moehrig, great safety, Malcolm Koonce tremendous upside, Divine Deablo, I think he has the potential to be a good rotational piece year one. Potentially (Deablo) starting to work his way into a full-time starter role as his to his career continues."

But for Patraw, one name the Raiders picked that he loves and others are overlooking stood out.

"My favorite pick, one of my favorite picks in the fourth round, was Tyree Gillespie from Missouri," Patraw said on all the Raiders' draft picks having high potential of becoming great players in the NFL, especially Gillespie.

The Raiders might have hit the jackpot in this year's NFL draft. When you look at the tape and listen to experts like Patraw, you get to see exactly what the Raiders envisioned when drafting these players.

 

 

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7 hours ago, LawFitz said:

Was hoping Mo Hurst would become the Raiders version of Donald/Jarrett. Maybe it'll be this guy instead. Loving his profile in this article...

https://raiderswire.usatoday.com/2021/05/11/raiders-undrafted-rookie-dt-darius-stills-tape-accolades-prove-size-dont-matter/amp/

Funny.... I don't ever remember anyone ever saying anything about Aaron Donald being only 6'1'' and 284 (looked it up because I was like really?) 

Sounds like the type of undrafted FA that actually makes a team and can have an impact. They measure the measurables which are not what they think is ideal but then how do you measure the things that aren't actually about height and weight?

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4 hours ago, Chadstroma said:

Funny.... I don't ever remember anyone ever saying anything about Aaron Donald being only 6'1'' and 284 (looked it up because I was like really?) 

Sounds like the type of undrafted FA that actually makes a team and can have an impact. They measure the measurables which are not what they think is ideal but then how do you measure the things that aren't actually about height and weight?

There are many examples of stud DT's who were in the low 6' height range. Most of them were disrespected coming into the league - even the great Donald. Height is overrated at DT IMO, and some of these shorter, lighter guys who are also strong figure out how to use their quickness and lower gravity center as huge advantages. The reason they are rare, is b/c you need to have that dawg in you to keep engaging with dudes who have 30-50 lbs on you all game and all season - Mo Hurst could still be working his way into a similar story, but perhaps he's a wee bit soft (in NFL terms). You absolutely cannot be if you are to become a Donald/Jarrett type as an 'undersized' DT.

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4 hours ago, Chadstroma said:

Funny.... I don't ever remember anyone ever saying anything about Aaron Donald being only 6'1'' and 284 (looked it up because I was like really?) 

Sounds like the type of undrafted FA that actually makes a team and can have an impact. They measure the measurables which are not what they think is ideal but then how do you measure the things that aren't actually about height and weight?

I’m happy that the team is taking solid swings at improving the D.  The probability of an UFDA turning into a big contributor seems slim but you don’t hit the homer if you don’t swing.  I thought Hurst was going to be much better than he turned out.  Not sure what happened to him.  

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1 hour ago, LawFitz said:

There are many examples of stud DT's who were in the low 6' height range. Most of them were disrespected coming into the league - even the great Donald. Height is overrated at DT IMO, and some of these shorter, lighter guys who are also strong figure out how to use their quickness and lower gravity center as huge advantages. The reason they are rare, is b/c you need to have that dawg in you to keep engaging with dudes who have 30-50 lbs on you all game and all season - Mo Hurst could still be working his way into a similar story, but perhaps he's a wee bit soft (in NFL terms). You absolutely cannot be if you are to become a Donald/Jarrett type as an 'undersized' DT.

From the article, this dude has the mentality right.

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2 hours ago, ICON211 said:

Raiders play 4 games on short rest this year - most in the NFL.  Anyone surprised?

nope...the league, the officials, and even the schedule makers have hated the raiders for years...

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7 minutes ago, Stinkin Ref said:

nope...the league, the officials, and even the schedule makers have hated the raiders for years...

Last year Raiders played the most 1 pm EST games of any west coast team in league history and I believe they traveled more miles than any team 2 or 3 years in a row.  Just pointing out facts, which I know isn't really your thing.

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  • Hankmoody changed the title to ☠ ☠ ☠ Official 2021 Las Vegas Raiders thread ☠ ☠ ☠ - only 3.5 more months of talking about draft reaches until real football arrives

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