The backend of the receiver group for the Las Vegas Raiders has largely been an open competition. With training camp in full and two games into the preseason, DJ Turner is making a strong case for himself.
As far as yesterday’s game, the Raiders came out looking a bit sluggish, though this shouldn’t be too concerning. Most of the offensive starters didn’t play, so it was once again an opportunity for players such as Turner to show off their skills. Once the game reached the third quarter, Turner made his mark, reaching the endzone after turning on the jets and impressively outrunning the Vikings’ defensive backfield. Turner has no shortage of speed, obviously. If you recall, Turner did run a 4.59 in his 40-yard dash at his Pro Day. The Raiders’ coaching staff is fully aware of this and is making use of Turner’s strengths here in the preseason. Speaking of that, Turner was asked about how he’s fitting in schematically.
“I like everything that they do. I feel like the coaches do a good job of calling the right plays at the right time. Especially in my position in the slot. They have a lot of ways for us to move around and make plays with opportunities to begin and hopefully, I can be a part of it.”
Raiders WR DJ Turner will help on offense and special teams. You can’t coach speed.
As Turner stated, the coaching staff is making the most of Turner. They’re maximizing his strengths, most notably his speed. Turner saw plenty of action against the Vikings, and you can be sure he made the most of it. Along with that notable touchdown score, Turner stood out on special teams. He broke off a 26-yard punt return, once again showing off his speed to the coaches and fans. It’s becoming obvious that Turner can do a little bit of everything, whether it’s in the offense or special teams.
Back in college, Turner displayed that ability as well. In case you weren’t aware, he led the ACC in several categories in 2020 in particular. Kickoff return yards (311), punt returns (15), punt return yards (125), and punt return yards per return (8.3) were among his accolades. Turner found himself in the top ten for each of these categories. Perhaps the Raiders have found themselves a future special team’s ace, and finally, they can relieve Hunter Renfrow from taking part in that department. That would certainly be a sigh of relief for Raiders fans.
*Top Photo: USA Today/Touchdown Wire