It goes without saying that NFL teams expect their draft picks to have some kind of impact. That’s why the Las Vegas Raiders are surely disappointed with 2020 third-round pick Tanner Muse, who didn’t play a snap last season due to a toe injury. On the bright side, the Clemson standout looks ready to have an impact in 2021.
Muse is rehabbing his toe injury and is close to a full recovery, per Vincent Bonsignore of Las Vegas Review-Journal.
It was great just to feel that grass again and see it painted and be able to run outside, I’m super excited just to get back out there with my teammates and show that I can compete and show that I belong.
The safety-turned-linebacker says he had been dealing with this injury since college. However, he kept putting off the surgery and played through pain. Bonsignore points out that the Raiders’ brass realized Muse was dealing with the injury, so they approached him about having surgery.
Even though Muse didn’t play, he reported to the team’s facilities every day and worked with the Raiders’ strength, conditioning, and nutrition staff. One year later, it looks like he will finally have a chance to show what he can do on the football field.
What kind of impact can Tanner Muse have with the Raiders?
The Raiders already have three starting linebackers, Nick Kwiatkoski, Cory Littleton, and Nicholas Morrow. ‘Ski’ was the best of the bunch. However, Morrow played well enough in 2020 that he signed a one-year contract this offseason. On the other hand, Littleton struggled early in 2020 but finished the season on a high note. They all should benefit from new defensive coordinator Gus Bradley’s presence.
Heading into the 2021 season, the Raiders have a solid linebacker trio. It would take an injury to one of the starters for Muse to see playing time. Then again, that’s likely as Morrow, Littleton, and Kwiatkoski missed time last season. Nevertheless, it’s not a given and the Clemson product can’t do anything but wait for his chance. In the meantime, he will have to keep working on his rehab. Also, he could have a significant role on special teams, but first, he needs to show he’s healthy. Based on the work he has put in, it looks like he’s on schedule.
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*Top Photo: John Locker/Associated Press