Oakland Raiders 2019 53-man roster: Linebackers
By Daniel Davis
Tahir Whitehead returns after leading the Raiders team in tackles last year with 126 tackles and 86 which were solo. Whitehead has a high motor and is a tackling machine. In 2016 with Detroit, Whitehead recorded 132 tackles, and in 2017 tackled 110 players.
He’s arguably the most consistent of the group. Throughout his career, he’s played inside and outside and is a versatile weapon for the Raiders defense. While he’s not a pass-rusher, he’s had 11 QB hits and 3 sacks in his career, but where he shines is in the run game with 32 tackles for loss in his 6-year career.
Whitehead continues to be a defensive cornerstone with tackling ability which makes him one of the best on the Oakland Raiders this year.
Vontaze Burfict’s checkered past made me question why the team decided to make him part of the team. The former Bengal has a reputation for being a violent player with a few cheap shots against new wide receiver, Antonio Brown, while he was with the Steelers.
However, NFL teams like winning, and Vontaze can help the Raiders do that. His first two years where he played all 16 games he had 127 tackles then 177, so there’s no doubt he has talent, but the question is can he stay on the field.
Even during the years he was suspended, he still averaged 10-12 tackles a game. Burfict just needs to stay on the field and he can be a big contributor for this team.
Nicholas Morrow has only started ten games in the two years he’s been on the Raiders. In those ten games, he has exactly 100 tackles. Morrow proved himself to be a worthy player during training camp with his hard work, dedication, and his ability to learn.
The third-year player has immense talent and Gruden’s tough style pulled the best out of him. Not only can he help with tackling, but his ability to rush the passer is great too. He has five quarterback hits and one sack, not great numbers, but combining that with his 25 quarterback hurries it shows the talent he has.
Not only that, but 67 of his 100 tackles are solo showing he can tackle in the open field without help. Morrow can only get better from here.