What are the Oakland Raiders biggest needs entering the bye?
Oct 4, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Oakland Raiders free safety Charles Woodson (24) celebrates after an interception against the Chicago Bears during the second half at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports
The final position to cover for biggest needs is safety.
Charles Woodson aka the GOAT aka Mr. First Ballot looks as if he has found the fountain of youth. He has the 2nd best coverage rating amongst all safeties this season, and that’s been obvious when watching.
Woodson constantly has to bail out Hayden and the rest of the cornerbacks when they get beat off the line, and it’s amazing how well Woodson is still playing.
Chuck definitely isn’t the same player he once was in run support, however. He struggles to make clean tackles and he tends to take bad angles to the ball carrier, which he may have to do to compensate for losing a step or two.
At 39-years young, the end is obviously near for C-Wood. He hasn’t said for sure whether he is retiring or not, but the team needs a long-term solution at safety.
Larry Asante has taken on the role of the second starter, and the team has also experimented with Taylor Mays before releasing him, and recently brought up Tevin McDonald from the practice squad.
Brandian Ross is on IR and the Raiders also experimented using T.J. Carrie at safety. I didn’t really understand that move, but I would be curious to see Hayden or McGill get reps at free safety.
There are some really good safeties in the upcoming free agent class. Eric Weddle and Eric Berry are the two biggest names, and Tashaun Gipson, Rodney McLeod and George Iloka are some other intriguing names.
From the draft, I mentioned Jalen Ramsey already at cornerback, but some like him better as a safety. Otherwise, Karl Joseph and Jayron Kearse are considered to the top safeties in the upcoming class.
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