Examining the Raiders RBs corps vs coverage in the 2022 AFC West
AFC West Defenses
Without question, Derek Carr will have his fair pick of targets on any given down and we’ll look at some of the top defenders in the AFC West and how they might match up covering LV’s backs out of the backfield.
Linebacker Kyle Van Noy is a respected name across the NFL that has excelled in coverage throughout his career, but head coach Brandon Staley deploys various packages that feature All-Pro safety Derwin James in different spots on the field.
It’s tough to see James being used in that regard with matchups on the perimeter that will also warrant attention. Edge goes to LV here as LA lost their two most productive linebackers statistically from last season in Kyzir White and Uchenna Nwosu.
Kansas City returns Nick Bolton and Willie Gay Jr. Combined, they tallied two interceptions and seven pass deflections. Heading into his fourth season, defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo will have a wrinkle ready for Carr & Co with new faces, but I like the chances of a McDaniels offense.
Josey Jewell has been productive, according to Pro Football Focus, since he entered the league and has excelled at defending the pass back to his college days at Iowa. Bradley Chubb was deemed to be effective in limited time with two pass deflections and one INT.
One player that's flying under the radar at Las Vegas Raiders training camp is Malcolm Koonce, and here are the early impressions of him.
The passing game will help dictate how this offense goes and an integral part of that is the running back position, not just out of the backfield, either. Protecting Carr will also be important, but fireworks are on the agenda for this fall, and more than a few fireworks are likely to pop off in this room.