The Las Vegas Raiders improved on the defensive side of the ball this offseason, but do they have enough at linebacker and in the secondary?
In what should be a very tight AFC West race, the Las Vegas Raiders have to be better on the defensive side of the ball in 2022. To do so, the franchise went out and upgraded at all three levels, and here we look at the linebacker group and the secondary.
We lead off with the linebackers.
Early prediction for the 2022 Raiders linebackers and secondary
- Denzel Perryman
- Divine Deablo
- Kenny Young
- Jayon Brown
- Micah Kiser
Perryman returns and should continue to play a sizable role. He is the vocal leader of the defense and the Raiders will need him to play at a high level and stay healthy to make this defense a great unit. Divine Deablo seems likely to return as a starter after the end of last season where he played great down the stretch. The Raiders elected to once again go cheap at the linebacker position after the failed Tahir Whitehead, Cory Littleton, Nick Kwiatkowski, and KJ Wright experiments.
Deablo is still going to battle with Brown for the starting position in nickel defense, but will likely play in 4-3 sets. Kenny Young provides good depth across all 3 linebacker positions and is a good special teams player along with Kiser.
The Raiders don’t really have any other interior linebackers on the roster but Tyree Gillespie and Jonathan Abrams could likely play some linebacker as well. This unit should still produce quality play with the return of Perryman and Deablo.