Which Raiders Rookie Has A Chance To Start Day 1?

The Las Vegas Raiders had a busy day on draft day. They started with five picks and ended up with six players drafted. During a recent press conference with the Raiders, general manager Dave Ziegler was asked how draft pick Dylan Parham improved the team. “We’ll see… That’s going to be up to him,” Ziegler said. The quote can be used for every player drafted.

The team didn’t pick until the third round. Instant impact players could be hard to come by in later rounds. They concluded by selecting two running backs, two offensive linemen, and two defensive linemen.

Now the question comes up:

Who will step up in their role and become a starter for the Raiders?

The Raiders’ defensive line was a source of contention during the 2022 offseason. The team lost Solomon Thomas to the New York Jets. Thomas was on a one-year “prove it deal” after coming from the San Francisco 49ers. Till the 2021 season, Thomas hadn’t shown the ability to stay healthy. According to Pro Football Reference, he finished with three and a half sacks and 17 solo tackles. The team lost another key contributor in Quinton Jefferson. As reported by Pro Football Reference, he finished with four and a half sacks and 17 solo tackles. 

Between the two defensive picks, Matthew Butler and Niel Farrell Jr., Butler has the opportunity to become an instant asset and starter.

Matthew Butler has a chance to become a starter after coming out of Tennessee as a three and five-technique player. He would line up outside the shoulder of a tackle and be ready for runs and pass rushes. He fits the new defensive coordinator Patrick Graham’s scheme on paper, which is the 3-4 defense.

Butler’s durability and consistent production could earn him a starting role on the thin defensive line.

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*Top Photo: Courtesy of Rocky Top Insider

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