Teams in the NFL can overcome one or even two major injuries to their core players. However, there’s a point where an organization can no longer withstand them. That currently seems to be the Las Vegas Raiders’ case.
The injury bug hasn’t let the Raiders off the hook
The Raiders suffer injuries just like any other NFL team. They lost wide receiver Tyrell William to a torn labrum in the offseason. The team was originally able to overcome the loss of the veteran due to the depth they had at the position. The Silver and Black had rookies Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards waiting as Williams’ absence was significant but nothing the Silver and Black could recover from.
However, Ruggs has been dealing with a hamstring injury. The Alabama standout may not be ready for the Raiders Week 4 matchup according to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport after missing their game against the Patriots. Moreover, Bryan Edwards will likely miss the contest against the Buffalo Bills per Vinny Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
The Raiders are running out of options at wide receiver. They can still count on sophomore Hunter Renfrow and veteran Nelson Agholor but the depth behind them is suspect. Zay Jones scored a touchdown against the New Orleans Saints but hasn’t done much of note otherwise. Rico Gafford on the other hand hasn’t played a single snap on offense.
The injuries don’t stop at wide receiver
Wide receiver isn’t the only unit injuries are decimating. Their offensive line is currently without left tackle Trent Brown, who is battling a calf injury and backup Sam Young is also dealing with his own injuries. Furthermore, the Raiders placed starting guard Richie Incognito on the Injury Reserve list after going down with an Achilles injury in Week 2.
The Raiders defense isn’t doing as bad as the offense but is still without cornerback Damon ArnetteDamon Arnette. As for linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski, he could play in Week 4 but it isn’t a sure thing. His presence would surely be a boost. All these lesions prompted head coach Jon Gruden to wonder out loud, what the hell’s going on.
Injuries will never be an excuse for a team’s underperformance. After all, the San Francisco 49ers crushed the New York Giants 36-9 last Sunday without pretty much half of their starting lineup. Nevertheless, healthy players give a team better odds of winning a game. Injuries are striking the Raiders hard, but they still have plenty of playmakers such as quarterback Derek Carr and running back Josh Jacobs available. It will be up to them to step up and do without many key players against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
You May Also Like: Raiders Players Ditch Masks Amid NFL COVID Outbreak
Top Photo: Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images