Raiders Blog Divine Deablo Jaylon Smith

Raiders Star Maxx Crosby On Teammate’s Potential: “Divine Deablo Is A Freak”

Las Vegas Raiders linebacker Divine Deablo has yet to reach his potential (arguably), but star defender Maxx Crosby believes in his teammate on defense. Will Year 4 lead to a breakout season?

With his third season in the rearview mirror, Deablo will look to build on a 2023 season that saw him start 15 games. In terms of depth behind him, the Raiders did their due diligence, drafting Tommy Eichenberg last month. In case you missed it, the Raiders also selected Amari Burney in the sixth-round last offseason, despite his limited playing time of just 89 snaps throughout the season. Barring an unforeseen circumstance, Deablo will remain a starter alongside Robert Spillane.

Speaking of Spillane, he recently appeared on Crosby’s show, The Rush. It was there that both Crosby and Spillane shed plenty of praise for No. 5.

“Divine is a real special player in terms of his eyes, abilities, and speed. His athleticism, strength, and contact power—so in terms of his game, he’s got it all. I know he’s been putting in the work this offseason to make it all come together, and I’m very excited to see his improvements this year. I know he’s been working tirelessly.”

Deablo has always possessed physical gifts; upon coming out of college, many viewed him as a hybrid prospect. Without a natural position, people weren’t sure how his game would translate at the next level—was he a linebacker or a safety? Still, his physical prowess can’t be ignored.

“Divine is a freak. He was a safety in college. Some people don’t know. He was literally a safety and then he moved to linebacker. Divine could be a Pro Bowl player, 100 percent. People don’t realize how good that kid could be.”

As it stands, Deablo is one of the better tacklers on Patrick Graham’s defense; his 80.4 Pro Football Focus grade in that department backs that statement. Regrettably, there are still other areas of his game where he’ll need to improve this season, especially in coverage.

Regardless of your opinion on Deablo, the former Virginia Tech product has made the most of his NFL opportunity. Because he’s in his final rookie contract year, there’s going to be some tough decisions next year.

*Top Photo: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

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