Following a successful home opener blowout win for the Oakland Raiders over the visiting New York Jets, let’s further settle into the review of the free agent class that Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie brought in. Week 2 is in the books; the sample size is growing and so are the free agent newcomer success stories.
For the second week in a row, Patterson deserves the recognition as the best among the free agent class. His weaponry role on the offense continues to shine through his speed and versatility. Patterson lined up in the shotgun formation as a running back, broke two tackles, and raced 43 yards to the end zone versus the Jets. Once Patterson hits his stride in the open field, nobody is catching him from behind. Opposing defenses have to now key on his pre-snap movement, and he’s a threat with the ball however he gets it. In the off-season, I compared Patterson to that of Ted Ginn Jr.’s tenure in Carolina, an explosive weapon.
After seeing Carr sacked on consecutive plays coming from the right tackle side in Week 1 vs. the Tennesse Titans, there was some concern about the position. Vadal Alexander was beaten like a drum, which gave way to free agent signing Marshall Newhouse gaining the confidence of offensive line coach Mike Tice. Newhouse has given up zero pressures in 58 passing snaps in the first two weeks, according to PFF’s Austin Gayle. That is incredible security for Carr’s efficiency in the passing game. Alexander may struggle to earn splitting snaps at the right tackle position if Newhouse continues his stellar play.
Morrow was a UDFA, but technically is eligible for the free agent class acquisition consideration. Morrow saw an increased role from Week 1 to Week 2, a promising sign that he impresses the staff the most amongst the young linebacker group. Weighing in at a swift 216 lbs., Morrow has the speed and agility to excel in pass coverage. He did just that Sunday while showing sound technique in making a few tackles. Morrow is someone to keep an eye on while he is stealing snaps from Marquel Lee. Sunday’s matchup with the Washington Redskins presents a new challenge with tight end Jordan Reed. Reed is a lethal player that Morrow will draw in assignment, we will find out if he can continue to make an impact.