Las Vegas Raiders; Maxx Crosby

Maxx Crosby Put His Stamp On The Raiders’ Monday Night Football Victory

The 2023 regular season has already been quite the roller coaster for Raiders fans. The team got off to a promising start in Week 1, securing a victory against the lowly Denver Broncos. Three straight losses, all with varying degrees of disappointment, ripped the rug out from under Raider Nation. But Week 5 saw Vegas get back on track, thanks in large part to Maxx Crosby.

Maxx Crosby Cements Himself As A Top Defender In The NFL

The former fourth-round selection has blossomed into one of the best players in the entire NFL. Crosby is as disruptive as it comes off the edge, as his pass-rush win rate sits at 20 percent on the year. That includes his 34 total pressures and five sacks in 2023.

On Monday Night Football vs. the Packers, Crosby put himself on the map even more in front of a national television audience. He dominated the banged-up Green Bay frontline by constantly finding his way into the backfield. “Mad Maxx” blew up multiple running plays behind the line of scrimmage with an astounding four tackles for loss.

Crosby also brought Jordan Love down in the fourth quarter, pinning the Packers back into a difficult 2nd & 17 situation. As you’d have it, Love threw an interception on the very next play. Sure, Crosby cannot be credited with the forced turnover, but make no mistake, his presence on the snap prior led directly to the errant pass.

Crosby Earns A Sparkling PFF Grade As The Raiders Build Momentum

The superstar defender checks in with the third-best pass-rushing grade in the league (according to PFF). Only T.J. Watt and Nick Bosa place higher on the list. Crosby is second in total pressures while being tied for third in sacks. He is on pace for a career-high in pressures, sacks, tackles for loss, and overall tackles.

Simply put, the stats match the eye test.

Four of the next five Raiders games will come against struggling offensive lines and/or poor quarterback play. The Patriots are up first, as Crosby can continue putting Bill Belichick’s squad even further in the dirt.

Justin Fields presents a challenge for the Vegas defense in Week 7, but that Chicago offensive line is ripe for the picking. Weeks 9 and 10 will see the Raiders take on both teams from the Big Apple. And luckily for Crosby and Co., they feature two of the worst offensive lines. Plus, playing against Daniel Jones and Zach Wilson always presents pass rushers with a chance at a big day.

Dear Dave Ziegler: Whatever You Do, Never Trade Maxx Crosby

There are several question marks around the future of the franchise, but Maxx Crosby is not one of them. At 26 years of age, the Raiders have a gem that any team would kill for. Here’s to hoping the Vegas front office doesn’t repeat the same past mistakes as previous regimes. Crosby should never wear another jersey as long as he is playing. No offer is enough to justify trading a potential Hall of Fame talent.

*Top Photo: Stephen R. Sylvanie/USA TODAY Sports

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