Kyle Long to the Las Vegas Raiders a real possibility
By CJ Errickson
The Las Vegas Raiders certainly need help at the offensive guard spots, and veteran Kyle Long is looking like a real possibility.
With the NFL’s legal tampering window for 2021’s free agency beginning in less than 24 hours, the Las Vegas Raiders are already hard at work. Per ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter, the Raiders are scheduled to meet with recently retired Chicago Bears guard Kyle Long.
Kyle Long announced his retirement from the NFL in January of 2020, but all signs point to a return in the immediate future. For Las Vegas, the 3-time Pro Bowl guard would fill a need and re-establish the Long family’s line in Silver and Black’s franchise. Moreso, the team would be more than just filling a hole on the offensive line if they were to acquire the son of Raiders Hall of Fame defensive end, Howie Long.
What would Kyle Long bring to the Raiders?
At first glance, Kyle Long would immediately fill in as a starter at either guard position on the Raiders’ offensive line. With the recent departures of veterans Gabe Jackson and Richie Incognito, Long’s potential return to the NFL could not come at a more opportune time for Las Vegas.
Since 2016, Long was unable to start more than ten games in a season, however with a little over a year away from the NFL, his body should be fresh and ready to go for the 2021 regular season. In his prime, Kyle was one of the more physically imposing offensive linemen each Sunday.
Most importantly, he would bring a physical presence in the ground game to a unit looking to regain form after a disappointing and chaotic 2020 season. Between injuries, underachievement, and instability, Tom Cable’s group struggled to create a push at the line of scrimmage in the ground game at times in 2020.
Ultimately, it partially led to tough sledding for starting running back Josh Jacobs.
The back will be entering his third NFL season and will undoubtedly seek to average more than 3.9 yards per carry in 2021. For Las Vegas, it would behoove them to offer the former 3-time Pro Bowler a contract before he reaches his second visit in Kansas City. He can not only stabilize the offensive trench, but he can significantly improve it as well.