We were ecstatic to see the Las Vegas Raiders offensive line in 2020’s season opener. The unit didn’t allow a sack and was among the best in the league. However, injuries and other issues have hindered their performance in recent weeks. One player the team surely wants back is guard Richie Incognito, who is currently nursing an Achilles injury.
The Raiders offensive line is better when Richie Incognito is in it
Ever since the Raiders signed Incognito in 2019, the veteran has performed at a high level. Back when he joined the team, he was deemed a risky addition. At the time, general manager Mike Mayock said there was a system in place to help the guard thrive. Looking back, the organization got the signing right.
The Raiders liked Incognito enough that they gave him a two-year deal worth $14 million. This year, the veteran kept playing at a high level up until he hurt his Achilles against the New Orleans Saints in Week 2. Since then, the Silver and Black has tried different players with mixed results. Rookie John Simpson played hard when he saw time at left tackle but struggled with the rigors of the NFL. Denzelle Good has been solid but the difference between him and Incognito is noticeable. While Good is well, good, the veteran is among the best at what he does.
Richie Incognito is one of the best at what he does
Pro Football Focus recognizedÂ how dominant Incognito was before he got hurt. On 75 snaps at left guard, he allowed no sacks nor hits and received an 81.4 overall grade for his effort. The Raiders’ offensive line is simply better when Incognito is in it. In a recent sitdown, Raiders head coach Jon Gruden said he doesn’t know when Incognito will be back in the lineup. He added that the veteran is close to returning but didn’t share any specifics.
While Incognito could indeed be ready to return to the lineup, Gruden’s comments aren’t very encouraging. The Raiders offensive line still includes center Rodney Hudson, veteran Gabe Jackson, and an improved Kolton Miller. However, Incognito takes the unit to the next level.
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