Alas, football is finally here! For the first time in many months, Las Vegas Raiders’ fans can finally say it’s game week.
The Raiders will take on the Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL’s annual Hall of Fame Game this Thursday, August 4th. The preseason games always have massive implications for players who find themselves on the roster bubble. Here are three offensive Raiders players who find themselves in that very position.
Las Vegas Raiders offense: 3 Players To Keep An Eye On
Nick Mullens is a familiar name to many Raider fans. While the young quarterback has struggled to find a home in the league, he’s acted as a thorn in the Raiders’ side on a couple of occasions. He led the San Francisco 49ers to a 34-3 win over the Raiders a couple years ago. Mullens also almost led a shorthanded Browns’ roster to a win over the Silver and Black in Cleveland last year. Now, Nick finds himself fighting for a roster spot in Las Vegas.
Mullens is a capable quarterback, and he’s proven the ability to be a solid backup quarterback in the NFL. Still, the quarterback spot on this roster is pretty crowded. Two young quarterbacks, Jarrett Stidham and Chase Garbers, currently stand in his way. Mullens likely has an edge over Garbers at the moment, but that will all be decided by his play during these next four games. With that in mind, Mullens is one Raiders’ player who must play well on Thursday.
Nick Bowers was an impressive tight end out of Penn State that went undrafted in the 2020 NFL Draft. Bowers is a great blocker, and he’s a great pass catcher as well. Nick is an impressive player all around, and if he can find a place in this offense, he will produce.
That’s the problem Bowers faces right now, though; finding a place. Bowers hasn’t seen any action yet barring preseason games, which is why he’ll need to make his mark in those games this year. Darren Waller and Foster Moreau still stand in his way, and he’ll have to compete with Jacob Hollister this year as well. If Bowers wants to see some real action this season, he’ll have to impress, especially on Thursday night.
The third and final Raider who must perform well come Thursday night is wide receiver DJ Turner. Turner is another undrafted free agent fighting for a roster spot this Sunday. The Raiders picked up the wide receiver out of Maryland on May 6th, and he’ll have an uphill battle this summer.
Unfortunately for Turner, he finds himself in the same struggle as many undrafted free agents. His position is crowded, and the coaching staff will have to decide between him and some other capable candidates as well. Turner will have to fight against Jordan Veasy, Isaiah Zuber, Justin Hall, and Dillon Stoner for the last wide receiver spot on the 53-man roster. He can get a good head start on that with an impressive showing on Thursday.
*Top Photo: AP Photo/Isaac Brekken