In his 10-year career, Prince Amukamara has been one of the most underrated cornerbacks in the NFL. After short stints in Chicago and Jacksonville, Amukamara finds himself in another one-year contract situation playing for the Las Vegas Raiders.
Expect Amukamara to start opposite of Trayvon Mullen
First and foremost, happy 31st birthday to Amukamara, despite not recording an interception, in three out of his last four seasons, he still displayed the ability to be an effective cornerback. In 2019 Amukamara started 15 games, with 10 passes defensed on 566 coverage snaps. Even without securing an interception last year, he earned a 69.6 coverage grade according to Pro Football Focus.
Regardless of Amukamara’s success in Chicago, the Bears saved $9 million against the cap and replaced him with a cheaper option, second-year corner Kevin Toliver.
Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther’s defense requires a lot of press and man coverage, which Amukamara has thrived on in his 10-year career. By playing so close to the line of scrimmage, Amukamara can disrupt the rhythm of the offense, and delay a throw, giving the pass rush more time to get after the quarterback, as Bears defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano told reporters late last year.
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With (Paul) Guenther’s defense, I followed him when he was at Cincinnati, and you can see the guys are aggressive, and he likes for his guys to press and I think that’s where I flourish. -Amukamara
The Raiders have a young cornerback group with an average age of 23. Bringing in a proven veteran, like Amukamara, can serve well for a young group looking to make the next step.
Although the Raiders used one of their first-round picks on cornerback Damon Arnette, Amukamara is expected to start opposite of Trayvon Mullen in 2020. According to Vic Tafur, Arnette will have a hard time making the starting lineup due to the limited offseason workouts caused by the spread of Covid-19.
*Top Photo: Leon Halip/Getty Images
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