The Las Vegas Raiders have acquired multiple talented pieces throughout this offseason, providing competition at every position on the team. Adding to that, they signed wide receiver Keelan Cole yesterday, who is expected to come in and push for a roster position right away. The camp battle just got a little fiercer with an already packed wide receiver’s room.
Who is Keenan Cole and what does he bring to the Raiders?
Cole, who stands at six-foot-one and weighs 194 pounds, attended Kentucky Wesleyan and went undrafted in the 2017 NFL Draft. He played four seasons for the Jacksonville Jaguars before a brief stint with the New York Jets in 2021. He started 11 games for the Jets last season, totaling 449 yards and one touchdown.
During his early years, he emerged as a key contributor for the Jaguars, which faced the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game in 2017. During his time there, he led the team in receiving yards with 748 and was tied for first in touchdowns with three. Cole recorded a season high of 55 targets in 2020 before leaving the Jaguars.
He brings a degree of being overlooked in terms of how he plays on the field. In addition, he has no trouble getting open for a pass despite being largely unimpressive prior to coming into the NFL. During his pro day, Cole ran a 4.59 in his 40-yard dash, though his cone drill (6.69) made up for it. Once he got to the pros, he dispelled any concerns by showing off plenty of on-field speed. Consider him the offense’s decoy. While others are being targeted, he could get some of the easiest looks of the season.
This throw is so similar to ZW’s vs Tennessee to Keelan Cole. Unbelievably similar location and trajectory.
That’s kinda cool. pic.twitter.com/KOe7f11rTQ
— Luke Grant (@LukeGrant7) May 3, 2022
Training camp keeps getting interesting
Cole’s signing means he’ll be competing against a slew of rookies, as well as other receivers who have signed. As of right now, the Raiders have Cole, Mack Hollins, Tyron Johnson, Tre Turner, and Dillon Stoner competing for that fifth receiver slot.
Cole had his share of up and down statistical seasons, making him one of this offseason’s most under-the-radar acquisitions. He’s one of those players that gave his all no matter who was under center throwing the ball to him. In 2022, Cole has a golden opportunity to shine in the desert as a member of The Silver and Black.
*Top Photo: Fan Nation/Jets Country