No one’s going to confuse the offensive line for the Las Vegas Raiders as an elite unit. However, they were quietly one of the more efficient units in the league and possess some promising pieces heading into the 2023 season. Among those that we should keep an eye on is Jermaine Eluemunor, whom Raiders brass brought back this offseason.
A versatile player, Eluemunor is well-versed in head coach Josh McDaniels’ offense and proved to be a positive surprise in an underwhelming season for the team. Speaking of underwhelming, the right guard slot was an abyss for the Raiders. Alex Bars, who’s a rotational piece at best, saw extended action, which was to the detriment of the team. Rookie Dylan Parham didn’t fare much better after taking a closer look at the duo’s performance.
While Raiders tackles excelled at pass blocking in 2022, the guards struggled. Alex Bars earned a grade of 55.4 (83rd-highest) while Parham’s grade was 48.8 (99th-highest).
Jermaine Eluemunor shifting back to guard is a sneaky solution. In ‘21, Elue’s PB grade was 67.0 at guard.… pic.twitter.com/bUQIFtT5MC
— RaiderRamble.com™ (@TheRaiderRamble) April 9, 2023
Moving Jermaine Eluemunor inside could pay dividends for the Raiders
Neither Parham nor Bars were the answer last year. While Bars is back, the Raiders would be better off entrusting Eluemunor with duties inside. His 67.0 pass-blocking grade was miles ahead of Bars and Parham. Sometimes, the answer lies right in front of you.
There’s another layer to this as well. If the Raiders opt to draft an offensive tackle in the first or second round, you’d be talking about a potential instant starter at right tackle. That gives you an optimal situation, in theory, of course. Eluemunor inside, said rookie at the tackle spot, with Thayer Munford and Brandon Parker splitting backup duties. If you recall, even NFL.com analyst Lance Zierlein and Eluemunor himself agreed the right guard position is in better hands with No. 72 this upcoming season. Whether McDaniels and the Raiders feel that way is another question entirely.
*Top Photo: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports