Controversial Ex-Raiders First-Round Pick Signs With AFC Team

damon arnette

Getty Former Raiders CB Damon Arnette.

Over the years, the Las Vegas Raiders have made some of the worst first-round draft picks in the NFL year after year. Perhaps the worst yet was former Ohio State cornerback Damon Arnette, who was selected with the 19th overall pick in the 2020 draft. After a disastrous rookie season that was marred by injury and poor play, Arnette fell down the depth chart heading into this season.

When he was on the field, he was one of the worst cornerbacks in the NFL. Off the field, he was consistently causing headaches. Earlier in the season, the Raiders released Arnette for waving a gun around and threatening to kill someone in his Instagram direct messages. His play on the field didn’t warrant him keeping a roster spot despite his draft status.

After getting cut by the Raiders, it appeared likely that Arnette would lay low for the rest of the season and see if he can get on a team in the offseason. Well, it appears that he didn’t have to wait long. According to David Furones of The Sun Sentinel, Arnette is signing to the practice squad of the Miami Dolphins.

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Arnette’s Poor Play Helped Dolphins Beat Raiders Last Season

It’s ironic that Arnette is signing with the Dolphins considering he helped gift them a win against the Raiders last season. With his team up 25-23 late in the fourth quarter, quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick heaved a bomb downfield in hopes of making something happen. Despite the sloppy play, Mack Hollins made the 34-yard catch on Arnette, who was playing poor coverage. The Dolphins got into field goal range and ended up beating the Raiders.

Arnette wasn’t the only one at fault for the loss as Arden Key’s facemask on Fitzpatrick also helped seal the deal. However, the Raiders should expect more from a top-20 draft pick.

Will Arnette Last in Miami?

Arnette now gets to reunite with former Raiders teammate Lynn Bowden, who was also part of the 2020 draft class but didn’t last long with the team. Bowden hasn’t done much in Miami as he’s missing this season due to injury. Time will tell if Arnette will have more success.

The Dolphins have one of the most expensive cornerback duos in the NFL with Xavien Howard and Byron Jones on the roster. Head coach Brian Flores has done a great job with the defense and could tap into Arnette’s potential. Despite his early struggles, there was a reason he was a high draft pick. Perhaps he just wasn’t a fit with the Raiders and a defensive-minded coach like Flores can get the best out of him. The first thing that the Dolphins have to ensure is that Arnette doesn’t get in trouble off the field. Similar to Las Vegas, Miami is a city that is ripe with vices for young players. He couldn’t stay out of trouble while in Las Vegas but perhaps the Dolphins have more structure in place. Considering he’s just on the practice squad, he’ll be easy to cut if he causes issues.

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