Conley: Year 2
During the 2017 NFL Draft, the Oakland Raiders selected Ohio State cornerback Gareon Conley in the first round. The No. 24 overall pick, Conley was expected to be an impact player in year one, but a shin injury dominated his rookie season, essentially rendering him useless for Oakland.
With the shin injury in the past, Conley is now ready to assume his place atop the depth chart at the cornerback position. Considered a top-10 pick before a rape accusation prior to the draft forced him down the line in the first round, the 23-year old has the talent to be one of the best young corners in the league this season.
The Raiders are hoping that what they saw this offseason already translates into what should be a great sophomore season in the NFL. The team brought in Rashaan Melvin to start on the other side of the defense at cornerback, but in order for the Raiders to do anything special this season, Conley is going to have to step up.
Conley was seen by many as the better of the two Ohio State cornerbacks taken in the first round in 2017, though Marshon Lattimore went on to be the NFC’s Defensive Rookie of the Year. That is how good Conley could be, but he has to stay healthy, and if he does, all of a sudden a weakness on the Raiders defense becomes a strength.