Now, heading into his third season as the top dog of the Now, Las Vegas Raiders (it still sounds weird), head coach Jon Gruden is looking to take his team to the next level and get them into playoff contention at the very least. Following a robust free agent signing period and the recently completed 2020 NFL draft, it’s time to take a look at what could lie ahead for Gruden and his playoff-hopeful squad.
Las Vegas Raiders Super Bowl LV Odds & Analysis After Draft
Raiders Offense Analysis
The Raiders went 7-9 last season and 8-8 ATS in Year 2 of the Jon Gruden era. Las Vegas was respectable on offense in finishing the 2019 campaign ranked 11th overall, ninth in passing, 13th in rushing, but just 24th in scoring (19.6 ppg). While rookie running back Josh Jacobs had an eye-opening campaign by rushing for 1,150 yards and seven touchdowns, he was almost literally a one-man gang on offense, though tight end Darren Waller did post 1,145 receiving yards.
To improve their offense in 2020, Las Vegas signed veteran wide receiver Nelson Agholor, future Hall of Fame tight end Jason Witten and quarterback Marcus Mariota in free agency. The Raiders also stunned everyone by drafting Alabama wide receiver Henry Ruggs II with the 12th overall pick while adding wide receivers Lynn Bowden Jr. (Kentucky) and Bryan Edwards on consecutive picks in the third round. Las Vegas also picked up Clemson guard John Simpson in the fourth round to complete their offseason overhaul on offense.
Raiders Defense Analysis
Las Vegas struggled on defense last season by finishing the 2019 campaign ranked an uninspiring 19th overall, 25th against the pass, eighth against the run and 24th in points allowed (26.2 ppg). To improve their defense in 20202, the Raiders signed veteran safety Damarious Randall, defensive end Carl Nassib, safety Jeff Heath, defensive tackle Maliek Collins and linebackers Cory Littleton and Nick Kwiatkoski in free agency. The Raiders also drafted Ohio State cornerback Damon Arnette with the 19th overall pick in the draft while also nabbing Clemson linebacker Tanner Muse in the third round and Louisiana Tech cornerback Amik Robertson in the fourth round.
Las Vegas 2020 Overall Analysis
Clearly, the Raiders want to improve a passing attack that was underwhelming in almost every way a year ago, but their drafting of three wide receivers with their first four picks looks like a bit of overkill to me. There’s also the fact that the Raiders drafted Ruggs III before CeeDee Lamb and Jerry Jeudy, the top two rated wide receivers in this year’s draft. I’m also not overly impressed with their additions on defense and I just can’t see this team coming close to stopping Kansas City’s explosive offense. With the Chargers and Broncos both looking like they’ll be better than they were last season, I’m thinking the Raiders are going to have a difficult way to go to record a winning record in 2020.