Raiders roster: 3 current starters fighting for their job this summer
DE Clelin Ferrell
It isn’t a hot take to say Raiders 2019 4th overall draft pick Clelin Ferrell hasn’t quite lived up to the hype. A player drafted that high is expected to come in and make a difference right away. However, there is something to be said about his ability as an overall solid player in the run game, as well as a pass rusher.
But what he has produced thus far leaves a lot to be desired. There’s no doubt the Raiders need as much talent as they can get defensively, so it is definitely a blessing having someone as well-rounded as he is. But for as high as he was touted, it isn’t enough to be good, not great.
We saw the emergence of Maxx Crosby as a rookie, who was also taken that same year in the 4th round at 106 overall. The Raiders also decided to bring in Pro Bowl defensive end Yannick Ngakoue this year in free agency, to try and add more firepower to a lackluster pass rush.
It is highly unlikely we see Crosby get bumped by Ngakoue in the starting role with how much Crosby has proven up to this point. That only leaves one other player on the opposite side, Ferrell, who I believe is a better fit for a 3-technique defensive tackle position.
Ferrell is someone who can be a pass-rushing defensive lineman, but also provide quality run support. The insertion of Ngakoue into the starting lineup will probably result in bumping Ferrell down to that 3-Tech, but if Solomon Thomas emerges as a starter for that role, we could see Ferrell playing as a heavy rotational guy and being the odd man out when it comes to a starting role.