Just when fans thought the Las Vegas Raiders were done making moves, the team’s brass makes another splash. Recognizing a need at linebacker, they have acquired Raekwon McMillan from the Miami Dolphins.
Everyone’s familiar with the moves at linebacker executed by general manager Mike Mayock and coach Jon Gruden this offseason. Finally addressing the abyss that had become the middle of the defense, Raiders brass sprung into action. They brought in Cory Littleton and Nick Kwiatkoski, instantly an upgrade over anything they’ve had since Gruden returned. Paul Guenther finally has linebackers that can cover but there was clearly drop off after those two. The Raiders were going to roll into the season with unproven talent behind their new acquisitions, primarily, rookies Javin White and Tanner Muse. That issue has now been remedied with McMillan.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter confirmed the transaction this morning after Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald originally Tweeted out the move.
Compensation update: Raiders are trading a 2021 fourth-round pick to Miami for Dolphins’ linebacker Raekwon McMillan and a 2021 fifth-round pick, per source. Good value for Raiders, but McMillan is in the last year of his deal. https://t.co/kkWF5UHccR
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 29, 2020
What are the Raiders getting with McMillan?
By acquiring McMillan, the Raiders have a proven commodity in the linebacker while their youngsters develop in 2020. In a year where the team’s expected to show significant improvement, adding a reliable run-stopper was necessary. In fact, Pro Football Focus gave him a 76.9 grade in run defense and 63.9 overall for the 2019 season.
McMillan totaled 104 solo tackles, two forced fumbles, eight tackles for a loss, and two hits in two seasons with the Dolphins. At first glance, McMillan’s strength appears to be in run defense, he did blitz the quarterback a total of 44 times in two years. He can clearly bring pressure to the quarterback if called upon, this will depend on how Guenther decides to use his new linebacker. Overall, the Raiders made a potentially brilliant move if the Liberty County standout can stay healthy.
You May Also Like: Raiders WR Zay Jones Believes In His Versatility in 2020
*Top Photo: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports