Las Vegas Raiders: 4 key players who need to improve in 2023

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - OCTOBER 24: Dallas Goedert #88 of the Philadelphia Eagles is tackled by Trevon Moehrig #25 of the Las Vegas Raiders during the first half in the game at Allegiant Stadium on October 24, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - OCTOBER 24: Dallas Goedert #88 of the Philadelphia Eagles is tackled by Trevon Moehrig #25 of the Las Vegas Raiders during the first half in the game at Allegiant Stadium on October 24, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images) /
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NASHVILLE, TN – SEPTEMBER 25: Divine Deablo #5, Chandler Jones #55, and Bilal Nichols #91 of the Las Vegas Raiders stand on the sidelines before an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium on September 25, 2022, in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images)
NASHVILLE, TN – SEPTEMBER 25: Divine Deablo #5, Chandler Jones #55, and Bilal Nichols #91 of the Las Vegas Raiders stand on the sidelines before an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium on September 25, 2022, in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images) /

Las Vegas Raiders: 4 key players who need to improve in 2023

Bilal Nichols, Defensive Tackle

One of the key defensive signings this past offseason for David Ziegler in his first year as general manager was former Chicago Bears defensive tackle, Bilal Nichols. Known for his strong play against the run, and for also getting pressure on the quarterback, he was supposed to come in and be a key in the middle of Patrick Graham’s defense.

Despite showing incredible dependency, appearing in all 17 games, and playing a majority of the defensive snaps, Nichols did not have a major impact in Year 1 with the Silver and Black. In fact, he had the second-lowest sack total of his career, racked up only 16 tackles, and for the most part, was non-existent for a position group that needed someone to anchor it.

There is a good chance Nichols is a salary cap causality this upcoming offseason, as the Raiders look to revamp this entire position group. He was brought in to be a part of the long-term solution, and I believe he gets another opportunity in 2023, though he has to be better.