Everyone’s familiar with the big-name additions the Las Vegas Raiders made at wide receiver this past offseason, but how will the back end at the position shape up?
The Silver and Black desperately needed reinforcements at wide receiver, so general manager Mike Mayock and head coach Jon Gruden did something about it. This past April, Raiders brass drafted Henry Ruggs III, Bryan Edwards, and Lynn Bowden Jr. to reinvigorate the offense. Ruggs will help stretch the field which will open up the offense and Edwards figures to one day be a starter in his own right. Bowden, although listed as a running back, will surely see snaps at wide receiver.
Take away these additions and you still have Hunter Renfrow and Tyrell Williams, both healthy and ready to contribute. That’s quite a crowded room in itself, without even mentioning Zay Jones, Rico Gafford, Marcell Ateman, and Keelan Doss.
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Who Will The Raiders Go With As No. 5 and No. 6?
You could say that the fifth and sixth receiver slots won’t have much impact in 2020 for the Raiders. A lineup of Ruggs, Williams, Renfrow, Edwards, and tight end, Darren Waller will demand a lot of targets. By the same token, having quality depth at wide receiver is crucial. The Raiders know this all too well after what happened last year after the Antonio Brown experiment fizzled out and injuries hindered Williams and Renfrow.
The other addition the Raiders made was veteran Nelson Agholor. The former Eagles wide receiver brings championship pedigree along with the ability to play in the slot or line up outside. Also, let’s not forget he can play special teams. Gafford is the “sexy” pick due to his blazing speed more than anything. On the other hand, Jones seems to have more upside, having caught nine touchdowns in his career, seven of them back in 2018.
For now, we’ll have to see how camp plays out, as injuries can still happen and a player can land on the Covid-19 at any time it seems. The battle to round off the wide receiver room will be an interesting one.
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*Top Photo: Matt Rourke/Associated Press