The Las Vegas Raiders drafted defensive end Clelin Ferrell in 2019 with the idea of making him a defensive-line anchor. That didn’t happen, but the sophomore is working on leaving his forgettable rookie season behind.
The Raiders expected Ferrell to wreak havoc in the trenches. However, it was fellow rookie Maxx Crosby the one that ended up having the most impact. Although the 2019 fourth overall draft pick recorded three sacks against the Chargers in Week 10, he was mostly quiet for the rest of the season.
Ferrell didn’t have the impact the Raiders thought he would have on the field. Nevertheless, he’s focusing on bulking up and polishing the nuances of his position.
Vic Tafur of the Athletic talked to Ferrell’s personal coach, Mark Hall, after the defensive end decided against being interviewed. Hall says that Ferrell has been studying and working on his craft.
“You can’t just go into the game and do what you want to do, you have to set everything up based on what they give you and have a plan for how you want to attack them,” said Hall regarding Ferrell’s offseason studies.
Also, Hall talked about how Ferrell is physically preparing for the 2020 season. The coach says that the defensive end is “lean and mean and running pretty good.” Moreover, Hall says that Ferrell is using his hips more, which is “something he didn’t use a lot last year. He is better able to attack angles now. He understands the angles better now.”
Similarly, Hall mentioned Ferrell is working on fundamentals. “We also wanted to give him a better understanding of what offensive linemen are presenting to him, and how to finish against them. Clean his game up … speed, agility, movement.”
Making Sense of Ferrell
It’s refreshing to know Ferrell is sufficiently self-aware to know he underperformed in 2019 in relation to his draft slot. He won’t get a participation trophy for focusing on getting better instead of talking about it. Nonetheless, he avoided resorting to cliches and putting a target on his back by refraining from talking about future expectations.
If Ferrell’s offseason regime leads to better on-field performance, he can talk all he wants about his increased production. However, he may choose not to do so as it seems like he’s more interested in actually producing than discussing it.
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