NFL Schedule

2021 Las Vegas Raiders Preview

Head Coach: Jon Gruden

2020

Record: 8-8

The Raiders were sitting pretty at 6-3 at one point, having knocked off several of the top dogs…. and then the bottom dropped out, ending another disappointing year at .500.

2021

2021 Draft Picks

1-17 T Alex Leatherwood, Alabama

2-43 S Trevon Moehrig, TCU

3-79 DE Malcolm Koonce, Buffalo

3-80 LB Divine Deablo, Virginia Tech

4-143 DB Tyree Gillespie, Missouri

5-167 DB Nate Hobbs, Illinois

7-230 C Jimmy Morrissey, Pittsburgh

The Raiders drafted to their needs in 2021, especially on the defensive side. Letherwood was a bit of a surprise at #17, being projected late first or early second round, but there are several likely eventual starters in the batch.

Key Pick Ups

John Brown – WR (from Bills)

Kenyan Drake – RB (from Cardinals)

Yannick Ngakoue – DE (from Ravens)

Casey Hayward – CB (from Chargers)

Drake could be a good pick up, although the Raiders seem to have no idea how to best utilize the backs they have. Brown will ease the loss of Aguillar, but it’s still a significant downgrade. Hayward is past his best days, but should fill a leadership role in the secondary. Ngakoue should help some on the D line.

Key Losses

Nelson Agholor – WR (to Patriots)

Tyrell Williams – WR (to Lions)

Rodney Hudson – C (to Cardinals)

Aguilar’s field stretching will be missed.

Offense

Offensive Coordinator: Greg Olson

2020 Points Scored: 434 (10th)

The Raiders formula for success wasn’t complicated on this side of the ball in 2020. When Josh Jacobs ran for 77+ yards, they were 6-0. When he didn’t, they were 2-6. Carr is going to get his numbers, but for this team, balance is key, especially with Aguilar gone and the receiving corps not nearly as good as it was and the team’s best pass protectors no longer around.

Defense

2020 Points Allowed: 478 (30th)

Defensive Coordinator: Gus Bradley

The free agents added here will help; the Raiders shouldn’t finish 30th again. But don’t look for much better… this will still easily be a bottom 10 unit.

Special Teams

The Raiders had one of the best special teams units in the NFL in 2020, and most of the unit returns. No reason to think they won’t be near the top once again.

If Things Go Well

If the D can at least not be terrible, Carr’s arm will help them win at least some of the inevitable shootouts they’ll be in.

If They Don’t

If the defense is bad again, and the Raiders don’t figure out how to deploy a running game, it could get ugly in Vegas.

Prediction

It’s hard to imagine they’ll figure out how to do that, and even if they do, the line may not be good enough to pull it off anymore. Chucky may be in trouble.

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Date Opponent
Monday
Sep. 13
Baltimore Ravens
Sunday
Sep. 19
at Pittsburgh Steelers
Sunday
Sep. 26
Miami Dolphins
Monday
Oct. 4
at Los Angeles Chargers
Sunday
Oct. 10
Chicago Bears
Sunday
Oct. 17
at Denver Broncos
Sunday
Oct. 24
Philadelphia Eagles
Sunday
Oct. 31
BYE
Sunday
Nov. 7
at New York Giants
Sunday
Nov. 14
Kansas City Chiefs
Sunday
Nov. 21
Cincinnati Bengals
Thursday
Nov. 25
at Dallas Cowboys
Sunday
Dec. 5
Washington Football Team
Sunday
Dec. 12
at Kansas City Chiefs
Saturday
Dec. 18
at Cleveland Browns
Sunday
Dec. 26
Denver Broncos
Sunday
Jan. 2
at Indianapolis Colts
Sunday
Jan. 9
Los Angeles Chargers

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