The most notable thing the Las Vegas Raiders have done this offseason is dismantle their offensive line. Rodney Hudson, Gabe Jackson and Trent Brown were all traded away and Richie Incognito was cut. Fortunately, the Raiders were able to bring Incognito back on a much smaller deal.
While he was injured much of last season, the veteran guard has been an important player and leader for the Raiders. He’ll be turning 38 in July and has already retired once. Despite those facts, Incognito has no intention to retire in the near future.
“I am going to play as long as I can,” Incognito recently told Vic Tafur of The Athletic. “I still have a lot of passion to play, and I love being around the guys. And I love the grind, so I won’t be walking away anytime soon.”
Incognito probably deserved to be a Pro Bowler in the 2019 season. 2020 was rough as he missed 14 games but he’s healthy now and will be one of the most important players for the Raiders offense this season. The team has decided to embrace youth on the offensive line. Incognito will be taking on a key leadership role in trying to help the team develop the younger players.
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Incognito Talks OL Changes
As previously mentioned, the Raiders have made a lot of moves on the offensive line. The only returning starters from Week 1 of last season will be Incognito and Kolton Miller. Denzelle Good will likely take over at right guard while Andre James will step in at center. It’s still very unclear who might play right tackle when the season starts. Incognito spoke about the changes to the offensive line.
“A lot of changes,” Incognito said. “Those guys have big shoes to fill. Rodney is the best center in the NFL. He is a stud. Andre has to step up, and I think Andre can do it.”
It is concerning to rely on so much youth on the offensive line but Incognito believes that the Raiders’ coaching staff will make it work.
“The line is going to look different,” Incognito said, “but the scheme we run and with Coach [Tom] Cable and coach [Jon] Gruden putting their offensive minds together, I think we will go out there and kick some ass.
“Andre has a small sample size, but he has proven that he is a starter in the NFL.”
Incognito Wants to Help Raiders Get Back Into Playoffs
It’s been a rough few years for the Raiders. In back-to-back seasons, they started off 6-4 but slumped as the season went on and missed the playoffs. Incognito has been a pretty durable player throughout his career and last season was the first time he played less than four games since his second season in the NFL. He’s got a chip on his shoulder this season and is ready to help the team get over the hump.
“Coming back and dominating was on my mind every single day then,” Incognito said. “And now I am hit with a little more adversity, coming back from this injury, so my mindset is just to come back and help lead the offensive line and the team. To get this team in the playoffs.”