Rodney Hudson has been arguably the best center in the NFL since joining the Oakland Raiders, and he is fresh off another elite season in 2019.
The Oakland Raiders signed Rodney Hudson in March of 2015, plucking him away from division rival Kansas City. Since taking over as the main man in the middle of the Raiders offensive line, Hudson has blossomed into one of the better interior linemen in the NFL, and many consider him the best center.
Hudson made an immediate impact in the Silver and Black, as he proved to be one of the better centers in football during the 2015 season, and was rated the best run blocker in the league at his position. In 2016, he would make his first of three Pro Bowl with the Raiders, as he helped the team to a 12-win season, and was a key cog behind Derek Carr putting together nearly an MVP season.
Prior the 2019 NFL season, the Raiders made sure they locked up their center for the long term, inking Hudson to a three-year deal, while making him the highest-paid center in the NFL. That made perfect sense for a team heading into a new city in 2020, and with nearly their entire offensive line locked up for the upcoming season, they should once again have one of the better units up front on the offensive side of the ball.
Looking at the Raiders offensive line, there are plenty of players who are loaded with talent, including right tackle Trent Brown, who, like Hudson, was named to the Pro Bowl this season. On the left side, Kolton Miller played much better in his second season at the NFL level, and left guard Richie Incognito was recently signed to a new two-year deal.
Gabe Jackson is the only Raiders offensive lineman with a question mark heading into next season, as the team could get a ton of cap space back if they release him. However, I personally feel that Jackson is a Pro Bowl caliber guard when healthy, so they would be wise to keep the five in tact for at least another season.
When it comes to Hudson, there is no weakness to his game, as he is an elite run blocker, and is putting up incredible statistics in the passing game. Over the last two seasons, Hudson has not allowed a single sack, which is downright incredible at the NFL level.
The pieces continue to change around Hudson, but one thing has remained the same, that he is the best center in the AFC. Coming off another Pro Bowl season, as well as being named a second-team All-Pro, Hudson could find himself in Canton before all is said and done if his career continues on this path.