Las Vegas Raiders 2023 Thanksgiving: What Raider Nation should be thankful for

The Las Vegas Raiders enter 2023 Thanksgiving at 5-6, but there is plenty to be thankful for this year.

Las Vegas Raiders v Miami Dolphins
Las Vegas Raiders v Miami Dolphins / Megan Briggs/GettyImages
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Raiders finally have a defense

Finally, one of the biggest things Raider Nation should be thankful for this year is the fact that the team actually has a defense now. For years, the only thing worth watching on defense was the pass-rushing styles of Maxx Crosby, but now, the Raiders have talent on all three levels for the first time in a long time.

Crosby has been his normal dominant self, but he is starting to get help up front in the pass rush by the likes of Malcolm Koonce and at some points, Tyree Wilson. The linebacker group has looked dominant as well, led by Robert Spillane, and a healthy Divine Deablo could end up being a star in this league.

The secondary has been where the Raiders have really stepped up, as the arrival of Marcus Epps has help key the growth of Tre'Von Moehrig. At cornerback, Nate Hobbs has been solid, but the play of Amik Robertson has really stood out, as he has been the Raiders best player at the position for the second straight season.

Patrick Graham was not fired alongside the head coach and offensive coordinator, and that appears to be the correct move by Mark Davis. If the Raiders defense steps up in Week 12 against the Kansas City Chiefs, then it may not only win Antonio Pierce the full-time head coaching job, but springboard the Raiders into a playoff run.