More young defensive talent
Another young player off the radar of many Raider fans is Maurice Hurst. Hurst was drafted in the 5th round pick in the 2018 draft, after falling due to a heart issue that was detected during the draft process. He’s already improved on last year’s numbers by matching his season total of sacks with four, but increased his quarterback hurries from seven to 24.
His pass-rush ability has greatly improved and has helped the pass rush, even though that is an area where this team still needs to improve. He’s also increased his total pressures from 11 to 30 still with 3 games to play.
Daryl Worley, the 24-year-old cornerback took on a starting role for the Oakland Raiders and has played right and left cornerback this season. When targeting his way, quarterbacks have a completion percentage of 53% while being targeted 66 times and allowing 35 receptions and an average passer rating of 96.7. He’s played pretty decently on the season despite the overall bad play by the Raiders defensive backfield.
Allowing four touchdowns on the season, he’s also allowed 579 yards with 191 yards after the catch. Worley is still in a development phase but you can’t fault him for having mistakes in his game as the defense as a whole has played underwhelming football which has led to the offense abandoning the run.
However, the young corner, I believe, has a bright future with the Raiders.
Finally, the player that was injured at the beginning this season and never got a chance to prove his worth is Johnathon Abram. The young safety proved he was a tough cookie after tearing a labrum in his shoulder and eventually having surgery to end his season. However, his toughness and tenacity and natural football ability are incredible at a young age. 2020 will be a breakout year for Abram, mark my words.
There are other strong young players, like kicker Daniel Carlson, punter A.J. Cole, defensive tackle P.J. Hall, and others. Going beyond 2019, the Raiders are only going to add more young talent , as the hold five of the first 100 picks in the 2020 NFL Draft, including two first round picks. When the Oakland Raiders finally move to Las Vegas, they’ll have a foundation of a young roster to build upon in free agency and the 2020 NFL Draft.