Raiders Hosted Free Agent WR With 4.28 Speed for Visit

damiere byrd

Getty NFL free agent WR Damiere Byrd.

The Las Vegas Raiders received a major upgrade at wide receiver with the addition of Davante Adams. He’s arguably the best wide receiver in the NFL and creates a great duo with Pro Bowl slot receiver Hunter Renfrow. Even with one of the better wide receiver duos in the league, the team could still use some speed.

The Raiders added a deep threat in Demarcus Robinson and a big body in Mack Hollins but neither guy has serious speed. Tyron Johnson is on the roster and he’s got elite speed but head coach Josh McDaniels could want to bring in somebody he’s more familiar with. Though free agency is starting to wind down, the Raiders could still add a few pieces before the draft, including a wide receiver. According to ESPN’s Field Yates, Damiere Byrd recently had a visit with Las Vegas.

The thing that stands out most about Byrd is his speed. Coming into the NFL in 2015, he ran a 4.28 40-yard dash. That would certainly make him one of the fastest wide receivers in the league. If the Raiders are looking for a burner, Byrd would certainly fit that mold.

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Byrd Has Played Under McDaniels

Byrd would make sense with the Raiders as he played with the Patriots in 2020. Not only that, but he had a strong season with McDaniels as offensive coordinator. He had a career-high 604 yards. That was in a weak wide receiver corps so he wouldn’t have as many opportunities with the Raiders, but could make a few big plays.

The fact that he left Las Vegas without a contract means there’s no guarantee he’ll sign with the team. If he remains unsigned over the coming months, the Raiders could bring him in to compete with Johnson as the offense’s speed threat but McDaniels could just stick with what he has and perhaps add a rookie in the draft.

McDaniels Talks Roster Building

The Raiders gave up their first and second-round picks in the draft this year due to the Adams trade. The team won’t be making their first pick until the third round. That leaves them without any overly valuable draft capital. The Raiders won’t be too sad about it as they now have the best wide receiver in the NFL. There are still some unknowns regarding how the team will approach things considering the new coaching staff and front office. McDaniels had a chance to discuss how the team is approaching things this offseason.

“You draft for need or you sign for need and if you make mistakes, you don’t really make yourself better, you know what I mean,” McDaniels told the media at the NFL’s owners meetings. “The guys we have on the roster right now are competitive and we’re going to try and coach them and improve them, and that’s our job.”

McDaniels still has a lot of players from last season that he needs to familiarize himself with. It sounds like he’s hoping to use a lot of the players already on the roster and try to improve them.

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