Should the Las Vegas Raiders go after free agent cornerback Richard Sherman at this point? The former All-Pro is still available and would surely help the Silver and Black, right?
The cornerback position is anything but set for Las Vegas as we near training camp. There’s plenty of talent to be had but there are still question marks when it comes to certain players. Damon Arnette, for example, what’s the deal with the former first-round pick? Is he truly an ‘afterthought‘ ahead of camp? Is Casey Hayward still a starting-caliber cornerback in the NFL? Yes, it’s true that these questions won’t be answered until camp is, at the very least, wrapped up. Nevertheless, youth and speed aren’t everything when it comes to defense. So there’s surely a place for Sherman, right?
Sherman has been linked to the Raiders since February, I mean who could forget Jon Gruden’s blatant tampering earlier this year. Regardless, Sherman to the Raiders seemed like a natural fit at the time. The team needed a reliable corner with experience and championship pedigree, of which Sherman has both. The five-time Pro Bowler did see a steep drop in production in 2020, though this was related to a calf injury. However, Bleacher Report’s Brad Gagnon did note that ‘the three-time first-team All-Pro still allowed justÂ 6.9 yards per target in limited action.’Â While ranking the best NFL free agents still available, Gagnon added that Sherman, while not in his prime anymore, still has his talent and experience which warrants a starting job as an outside corner.
Do the Raiders still need Sherman?
Since Gruden’s tampering, the Raiders signed Hayward and also drafted Nate Hobbs in April’s NFL draft.Â The cornerback’s room has gotten crowded since then, but in all fairness, none of the current Raiders corners come close to Sherman’s accolades. In 2019, his last full season, Sherman posted solid numbers across the board. He only surrendered a 62.3 completion percentage. Considering opposing quarterbacks targeted him 69 times (up from 39 in 2018), Sherman held his own.
On the other hand, Sherman has made it known he wants to play for a squad that’s in championship contention. Unfortunately, the Raiders aren’t quite there yet, the team has yet to even return to the playoffs. Even so, it’ll be interesting to see if somehow, Sherman still ends up in Silver and Black.
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*Top Photo: Rick Scuteri/Associated Press