After a brief stint as a starter for the Oakland Raiders, Trevor Davis saw his role decrease once Zay Jones learned the offense. Davis remained the team’s kick returner due to Dwayne Harris’ injury, but a disastrous performance against the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 13 sealed his fate as it only took one day for the Raiders to cut him loose. A lost fumble on a kick return and a terrible run on fourth down did Davis in.
To fill Davis’ roster spot, the team activated linebacker Marquel Lee from the injured reserve. Lee was hurt early in the season and should bring some aid to a struggling defense. Jalen Richard will take over kick return duties with Davis now on the waiver wire.
Oakland traded a sixth-round pick to the Green Bay Packers back in September. The hope was that Davis would bring some help to a weak wide receiver corps. That didn’t end up being the case. Between Davis and Antonio Brown, the Raiders have given up a third, fifth and sixth-round pick for pretty much nothing.
Raiders Continue to Struggle at Wide Receiver
It becomes more obvious every game that the Raiders have one of the worst wide receiver groups in the NFL. Rookie Hunter Renfrow was the only player making plays, but he could be out for the season with a broken rib. Tyrell Williams has been a disappointment as he was supposed to be the team’s number one receiver. He’s yet to make more than four catches in a game since Week 2.
With Davis gone, that leaves Williams, Zay Jones, Marcell Ateman, Keelan Doss and Rico Gafford as the team’s only healthy wide receivers. The argument could be made that the Raiders have the weakest group of wide receivers in the NFL. The team has had two demoralizing loses in a row. However, they are far from out of the playoff race. Oakland should consider kicking the tires on someone like a Dez Bryant to get extra help for a potential playoff run.
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Jon Gruden Won’t Criticize Derek Carr
Quarterback Derek Carr deserves plenty of blame for the team’s recent struggles. That being said, he doesn’t have much to work with. As previously mentioned, the Raiders have one of the worst wide receiving corps in the NFL. Even though he’s played poorly in the last two games, Jon Gruden won’t criticize his quarterback publicly.
“I’m not going to sit here and criticize my quarterback,” Gruden said on Monday. “He has done a lot of good things. He is competing and has done very well with a lot of moving parts. If you think that’s easy, you’re mistaken. I compliment him for his competitiveness and his preparation and his ability to compete each week.”
If Oakland doesn’t decide to make any moves to give Carr more help at wide receiver this season, it’s an absolute must heading into 2020. Carr was supposed to have the best wide receiver in the NFL this season, but Antonio Brown forced his way out. Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock need to give Carr more to work with for 2020. Considering the team is set at offensive line, tight end and running back, a top-tier wide receiver could be the missing link.