Based on how the Las Vegas Raiders‘ offseason has gone, they could only have three defensive starters this year that also started Week 1 for the team last year. Johnathan Hankins, Johnathan Abram and Clelin Ferrell all started Week 1 last year and will probably do it again this year. Defensive end Josh Mauro was a Week 1 starter for the team last year but the Raiders didn’t appear to make an effort to re-sign him.
The Jacksonville Jaguars announced on Tuesday that they struck a deal with Mauro.
With Mauro headed east, that makes two prominent 2019 defensive ends for the Raiders are playing for new teams this season. The team also let Benson Mayowa walk who ended up signing with the Seattle Seahawks. Mauro wasn’t much of pass rusher when he was with the team but he’s a strong run defender. Letting him go probably means the Raiders are confident that Ferrell and Maxx Crosby can stop the run. Carl Nassib will also be in the mix but he’s more of a pass rusher.
P.J. Hall Visiting Texans
Speaking of 2019 starters for the Raiders who are headed elsewhere, P.J. Hall now finds himself in free agency after a failed physical caused the trade to the Minnesota Vikings to fall through. Las Vegas decided to just let him go after that news and he was able to clear waivers, which makes him a free agent.
According to ESPN’s Field Yates, the former second-round pick is headed to Houston to visit the Texans.
Hall is only entering his third year as a pro so there’s still a chance he can turn his career around. He was never terrible with the Raiders, he just kept showing up to camp out of shape, which is a big no-no for Jon Gruden and crew.
The Texans would make sense for Hall. He’s from Texas and played his college ball at Sam Houston State. It could be a good spot for him to turn his career around.
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Latest on Jadeveon Clowney
The NFL season starts in less than a month and Jadeveon Clowney still remains unsigned. At this point, it doesn’t look like any team is willing to give him the huge money he desires. With Mauro not returning, the Raiders could use a really good run defender on the defensive line. Clowney isn’t a sack master but he’s one of the better run defenders in the NFL.
Also, they could get him at a discount at this point. The Raiders don’t really need him. Crosby looks like a stud, Ferrell should be improved and Nassib is a consistent pass rusher. Adding Clowney would just be a luxury. Now, there’s nothing wrong with having too much talent. That’s how teams win Super Bowls. If they can get Clowney on a reasonable deal, they should strike. The Raiders’ defense has been dreadful for years. For the first time in a long time, the unit seems to be heading in the right direction. Adding a proven player like Clowney could help elevate the team’s defense into a solid unit.