The NFL is a business and its players often change teams and alliances. This is nothing new. Regardless, two former Los Angeles Chargers helped pave the way for their former team’s demise, which the Las Vegas Raiders will gladly accept.
The two Chargers castaways we’re referring to are, of course, Darius Philon and Casey Hayward. We should mention, before anything else, that Philon has been lost due to a “significant” knee injury. Rich Bisaccia, the Raiders’ interim head coach, announced yesterday after the game that Philon is not expected to return anytime soon. That is sad news for the Raiders’ defense considering how well Philon had been playing. All game long, Philon was disrupting the Chargers’ running lanes with his fiery play. He accumulated a tackle for a loss, three solo tackles, and a pass deflection yesterday.
The interception heard around the world…
Hayward himself also had a noteworthy game. By the game’s conclusion, Hayward had totaled three solo tackles, three pass deflections, and a huge interception. It’s also worth mentioning that Hayward played a total of 93 defensive snaps against the Chargers. Yikes, playing in such an overtime thriller will do that. As far as the interception goes, it couldn’t have come at a better time and against the team that decided his services were no longer needed this past offseason. Suffice to say, social media was set ablaze last night with Hayward’s play.
And that’s how the season ends. With a Casey Hayward INT.
â€” Guilty As Charged Podcast (@GACPodcast17) January 10, 2022
Casey Hayward gets his first interception all year and it couldn’t have come at a better time. The #Raiders are in GREAT shape.
â€” Tashan Reed (@tashanreed) January 10, 2022
Casey Hayward revenge game bitches!!! Woooooooo!!!! Let’s go Raiiidddderrrsss!!!
â€” ðŸ´â€â˜ ï¸ðŸ´â€â˜ ï¸ðŸ´â€â˜ ï¸ (@DaRaiderz4Life) January 10, 2022
Veteran play by Casey Hayward
â€” Maurice Moton (@MoeMoton) January 10, 2022
For Hayward, it was the cherry on top of what’s been one of his best seasons ever, allowing only 388 yards via the air and just two scores against him individually. As far as Philon goes, he was one of the top five highest-graded Raiders from last night’s epic win per Pro Football Focus.
Raider Nation no doubt wishes Philon a speedy recovery, and as far as Hayward goes, it’s onto Cincinnati.
*Top Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images