In part-two of our preseason All-AFC West series, the Las Vegas Raiders new additions on defense earn a spot on the 11-man lineup.
The second in a two part series looking at the best players in the AFC West turns our attention to the defensive side of the ball. The Las Vegas Raiders have made improvements to their defense this offseason via the 2020 NFL Draft, and free agency, but will it be enough to land some players on this list?
We start our preseason All-AFC West defense by looking at the big guys up front, and find out who makes our 11-man starting lineup.
Von Miller, Denver Broncos
Von Miller is one of the preeminent experts in sackology in all of football. He is the driving force behind why the AFC West is built up at right tackle.
Miller has totaled 106 sacks in his career and coming off his second highest sack total in 2018, there hasn’t been much that can stop the sack master. Next stop for Miller, Canton.
Joey Bosa, Los Angeles Chargers
The older Bosa Brother has the misfortune of playing in one of the least visible markets in the NFL. But don’t let the media narrative fool you, as Joey Bosa is the best Bosa, and one of the better defensive ends in football.
Totaling 54 pressures and 11.5 sacks alone in 2019, Bosa is basically a lock to get double-digit sacks if he plays a full season. On a revamped Chargers defense, he is the heart and soul.
Defensive Tackle 1
Chris Jones, Kansas City Chiefs
Chris Jones is a menace to interior offensive linemen across the AFC West and NFL at large. He has rare size and athleticism for the position at 6’6 and over 315lbs, but is blessed with catlike quickness and strength that make him too much of a task for most guards.
Despite being injured every year, Jones has put up incredible numbers for a pass rusher, much less an interior defensive tackle. The fact that the Chiefs were able to get him under contract for 2020 is bad news for the rest of the division.
Defensive Tackle 2
Maliek Collins, Las Vegas Raiders
The Las Vegas Raiders finally get on the defensive side of the AFC West arms race, getting their own interior dynamo in Maliek Collins. Perhaps not the household name of other players on this list, Collins is well respected in film and analytic circles alike for his ability to command and defeat double teams and the impact he makes for his teammates.
Coming over from Dallas, the four-year NFL vet has improved every year under defensive line coach Rod Marinelli. This was one of the key gets for the Raiders in free agency, as he joins a young and talented defensive line ready to take their game to the next level in 2020.