As the Las Vegas Raiders prepare for their third preseason matchup today against the Miami Dolphins, one question lingers. Should head coach Josh McDaniels play more starters in the third contest?
The Raiders have only rolled out a few future starters so far in the preseason. Most notably early on was Josh Jacobs, a decision that stirred much controversy. However, other positions have required that their starters see preseason action, the biggest being the offensive line. Besides Kolton Miller, all of the Raiders’ O-linemen have been getting playing time as McDaniels attempts to figure out which combination is the best moving forward.
What did Raiders HC Josh McDaniels have to say regarding his potential starters?
As many football fans know, the third preseason game is often where starters see action, a minor tune-up. Regarding this notion, McDaniels was asked if he would be following suit in today’s game. Well, McDaniels was actually noncommittal about who his actual starters are at the moment. A brilliant, mysterious response as the Raiders’ coach continues to keep things close to the vest.
“Again, we haven’t really said, ‘This group is the starters.’ So, we’re just kind of in a competition mode still. We’ve still got a lot of time left to sort things out in that regard. We’re going to try to do the same thing we did with the first two, which is really using them to help us with some things we’re trying to figure out. So, in some cases, yes, in some cases probably not, but that’s probably where we’re at right now.”
The coach is playing it the right way, keeping the media in the dark when it comes to his starters. The fact is, both McDaniels and Dave Ziegler made it clear that the team was going to be an open competition. Obviously, that doesn’t apply to spots such as the starting quarterback, the top receivers, or the edges. Other than that, most of the players on the roster were going to have a chance to make an impression. Throughout most of camp and the preseason, we’ve seen several players stand out, with many surprising cuts already having taken place, such as Demarcus Robinson. In regard to today’s game, we’ll likely see a repeat of the Minnesota Vikings matchup. The battle for the backup quarterback title, the O-line, back-end receivers, and defensive tackle will once again garner the most attention.
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