With the 2020 offseason upon us, let us take a look at the Las Vegas Raiders pending free agents along the defensive line.
The 2019 Oakland Raiders saw major strides in the right direction in terms of their defensive line, erasing the memory of a 2018 season that saw them finish dead last in sacks. During the 2019 NFL Draft, the Raiders invested the No. 4 overall pick in Clelin Ferrell, and a fourth-round pick in Maxx Crosby in terms of defensive end talent, and Crosby turned out to be one of the steals of the draft.
Ferrell came on later in his rookie season, and should be a solid player for years to come, becoming a cornerstone on this defensive line alongside Crosby. On the inside, P.J. Hall and Maurice Hurst played very well in their second years, and you have to think Hurst is on the cusp of being a Pro Bowl player.
As the Raiders head to Las Vegas, there are decisions to be made all over the roster, and the defensive line is no different. There are some players who have expiring contracts at the position group that played big roles for the team in 2019, and it will be interesting to see if they are brought back this offseason.
Here is a look at those along the defensive line who are entering free agency.
Mauro, Mayowa, and Jordan all had their moments in the Silver and Black last season, and they all could be back with the team in 2020. Jordan has had to overcome a lot during his NFL career, but was once considered a can’t-miss prospect, and we saw flashes of that last season. Mauro and Mayowa were solid all season long.
I would not be surprised if Mayowa, Mauro, and Jordan are back with the Raiders this season, as all three of them bring something special to this position group. Las Vegas will have to be strong on both sides of the line in 2020 if they want to continue to trend in the right direction, and these three played a big role in the team’s three-game improvement in 2019.
Mayowa was one of the more productive sack guys in the league when you look at his sack totals against time on the field, and Jordan has that uncanny ability to get after the quarterback as well. Mauro started seven games last season, and had three tackles for a loss to go along with one pass defended.
Arden Key will hopefully return stronger than ever from his injury, which fills a roster spot at the position group as well. Johnathan Hankins has been a solid player since joining the Raiders and he is under contract as well, so this is another position group to keep an eye on this offseason.