Las Vegas Raiders: 5 players that must perform for a 2021 playoff berth
One of the NFL’s most premiere and toughest positions to play is the cornerback position. In a day and age where passing offenses are king, the desire and need for quality play at the position are at an all-time high. For the Las Vegas Raiders in 2020, Trayvon Mullen was their best player at the position.
Mullen ranked in the top-10 last season for generating PBU’s (14) out of all NFL cornerbacks. While that may not seem like a major stat to most, a cornerback that can track and make plays on football is a critical factor in generating turnovers.
More times than not last season, the former Clemson Tiger was tasked to cover WR’s for seemingly endless periods of time in man coverage due to a lack of a pass rush up front. This season, that narrative will more than likely change with (hopefully) more pressure that allows him to be in coverage for less extended periods of time.
Why Trayvon Mullen is critical to the Raiders’ success in 2021.
In case you haven’t noticed, the Las Vegas Raiders 2021 regular-season schedule is relatively daunting. Their home division of the AFC West is already competitive enough, but having to face arguably the best division in football in the AFC North also makes for some uphill sledding.
In addition, the Silver and Black will face off against some of the NFL’s top WR’s:
- Allen Robinson – Chicago Bears
- Amari Cooper – Dallas Cowboys
- Chase Claypool & Diontae Johnson – Pittsburgh Steelers
- Courtland Sutton (x2) – Denver Broncos
- DeVante Parker – Miami Dolphins
- Jarvis Landry & Odell Beckham Jr. – Cleveland Browns
- Keenan Allen (x2) – Los Angeles Chargers
- Kenny Golladay – N.Y. Giants
- T.Y. Hilton – Indianapolis Colts
- Terry McLaurin – Washington Football Team
- Tyreek Hill (x2)- Kansas City Chiefs
As you can see, most Raiders opponents this upcoming season possess numerous impact players at the position. As Trayvon enters Year 3 of his career, he will either sink or swim with the slate of talent he will be dealt this year.
After an impressive sophomore campaign and additional pass rush upfront, he projects to have a favorable season for the defense. However, he cannot do it alone in the secondary, and the next player on this list has a large task ahead of him before he even debuts with the organization.