Raiders Cut Veteran LB to Make Room for RB Signing

jon gruden

Getty Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden.

The Las Vegas Raiders‘ 2020 roster is pretty much filled out, but there are still some moves that need to be done. They’ve added a lot of free agents and rookies this offseason, but haven’t cut a lot of players. They cut six players last week and it looks like more will be on the chopping block. The Raiders announced on Monday that they have cut linebacker Derrick Moncrief to make room for running back Devontae Booker.

Moncrief was just signed in January and hasn’t even had a chance to practice with the team. He spent the last three seasons in the CFL where he became an All-Star for the Saskatchewan Roughriders. The Raiders have added many other linebackers this offseason, so they had to start trimming the fat. Moncrief could find another team thanks to his impressive stint in the CFL.

Predicted Raiders Linebacker Depth Chart

*denotes starters

SLB: Nicholas Morrow, Marquel Lee, Ukeme Eligwe, Javin White

MLB: Nick Kwiatkoski*, Nick Usher

WLB: Cory Littleton*, Tanner Muse, Kyle Wilber, Justin Phillips

At the top, the Raiders’ linebacker corps looks very different than it did last year. For those who don’t know, the team runs mostly nickel packages on defense, so typically only two linebackers start the game. The two starters will obviously be Kwiatkoski and Littleton as they were big free-agent additions for the team.

Las Vegas has already gone on record saying that Kwiatkoski will start in the middle. That makes sense as Littleton is the more talented and expensive player, but he’s less vocal. This will give him a chance to focus on making plays.

Morrow figures to the third guy as he’s the only returning linebacker who saw a lot of time on the field last season. It’s hard to tell just how good he is because the Raiders’ linebacker corps as a whole was terrible last year. Perhaps surrounding Morrow with more talent will help take his play to the next level.  Lee is another player whose been with the team for a while and will probably be able to earn a spot on the regular-season roster.

Muse was a third-round pick in the recent draft, but he played safety in college. If he’s going to make an impact at linebacker, it will happen later in the season.

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Have the Raiders Moved on From Will Compton?

It was clear during free agency that the Raiders didn’t want their linebacker corps to look anything like it did last year. Vontaze Burfict and Tahir Whitehead are gone and won’t be coming back, but what about Will Compton?

The veteran linebacker was brought on during the season and while he didn’t set the world on fire, he was a solid addition. Out of the free-agent linebackers the team had, Compton seemed like he had a decent chance to be brought back. However, it looks like that ship has sailed. The Raiders are very happy with their two new guys at the top and brought in some youth they can develop.

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