The Las Vegas Raiders were without their first-round wide receiver Henry Ruggs III, last Sunday. Now, it seems the team will be without their other top pick, cornerback, Damon Arnette.
The Silver and Black have had to deal with a plethora of injuries here in the early going. While it isn’t an excuse, it hasn’t made things easier for head coach Jon Gruden and his squad. The world witnessed how damaging it was for the Raiders to lose Ruggs. His speed has helped this offense open up and Sunday he was missed. Unfortunately, Arnette, who was the other first-round selection, will be missing some extended which will hurt the Raiders defense.
Before re-injuring his thumb versus the Patriots, the Ohio State standout was playing at a high level for defensive coordinator Paul Guenther. Despite being a rookie, Arnette’s abilities such as his anticipation of throws were that of an NFL veteran. The following play against Bill Belichick’s Patriots is only one example of his dynamic play in the early going.
Incredible play by #RaiderNation rookie CB Damon Arnette. Peels off the Post route before Cam even releases the pass, perfect path to close on the crosser and meets the ball with ideal timing. Diagnosed the concept and anticipated the throw like a veteran. pic.twitter.com/oCOS5WRlto
— Brad Kelly (@CoachBKelly) September 29, 2020
What Do The Raiders Do Now?
Losing a starting cornerback is devastating but then again, the show must go on. The Raiders have other cornerbacks on the roster that will have to do their best to hold down the fort. Jerry McDonald of The Mercury News recently spotlighted who the defense will turn to now that Arnette will be out for the foreseeable future.
“With Arnette out, corners in line for more work include veteran Nevin Lawson (36 snaps against New England), and second-year player Isaiah Johnson (active but no snaps on defense). Also available are Keisan Nixon, who has been used primarily on special teams, and fourth-round draft pick Amik Robertson of Louisiana Tech, who was inactive in each of the first three games.”
It won’t be easy for any of the other Raiders cornerbacks this Sunday, especially considering the limited snaps they’ve had this season. The organization can only hope Arnette can pick up where he left off once he’s healthy.
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*Top Photo: Las Vegas Raiders Official YouTube Channel