After a quiet start to free agency, the Las Vegas Raiders made one of the biggest moves of the week when they signed pass rusher Chandler Jones to a three-year contract. Though he’s 32-years-old now, he’s still capable of being one of the most disruptive forces in the NFL any given week. Together with Maxx Crosby, the Raiders now have one the best pass-rushing duos in the entire league.
There will be plenty of time for Jones to acquaint himself with the team and the fan base but he shared a simple reaction to joining the Raiders.
Almost every player looks good in silver and black and Jones will be no exception.
The four-time Pro Bowler wasn’t mentioned often as a Raiders target before free agency due to the fact that they already had a strong pass-rushing duo in Yannick Ngakoue and Crosby. However, Jones is a much better fit in Patrick Graham’s defense than Ngakoue. No quarterback is going to be safe when the Raiders next season.
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Jones Has More Sacks Than Any Player Since Entering NFL
Since getting drafted by the New England Patriots in 2012, Jones’ 107.5 sacks is more than any other player has accumulated in that span. Not even Aaron Donald or J.J. Watt have as many. Jones is getting older but had 19.0 sacks just two seasons ago and finished second in Defensive Player of the Year voting.
He now gets to join a staff that he’s familiar with. Graham was a defensive assistant in New England during Jones’ entire tenure there and head coach Josh McDaniels was also with the team. It’s should be a quick transition for the star pass rusher.
Raiders Named ‘Big Winner’ for Jones Addition
The Raiders still have moves they need to make if they hope to compete to win a stacked AFC West. The team needs a No. 1 wide receiver, could use another linebacker and cornerback. That’s not to mention that offensive line help is a necessity. However, landing Jones proves that the team is looking to win now.
Jordan Dajani of CBS Sports named the Raiders as the biggest winner of Day 3 of free agency thanks to the Jones signing:
The Raiders were probably the big winner from Wednesday. They agreed to terms with one of the best available pass-rushers, giving former Arizona Cardinals defensive end Chandler Jones a three-year deal in the neighborhood of $51 million, according to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport. Jones may be 32-years-old, but he hasn’t looked like it. He notched 10.5 sacks in 2021 — making it the sixth season in seven years where he’s recorded double-digit sacks. The one season Jones didn’t, he played just five games. Pairing Jones with Maxx Crosby is going to be must-watch TV.
New general manager Dave Ziegler got much more creative than Raiders fans are used to from the Jon Gruden/Mike Mayock days. It’s far too early to tell if Ziegler is the real deal but landing a big fish like Jones and pulling off the Ngakoue trade shows he’s willing to make big moves.