Raiders Urged to Sign ‘Nastiest Lineman in the Game’

ryan jensen

Getty Ryan Jensen hugging Tom Brady.

The Las Vegas Raiders are in the thick of the playoff race but it’s never too early to start thinking about the offseason. The fact that the team can make the playoffs this year after everything they’ve gone through could mean that they aren’t too far off from Super Bowl contention. However, they still have a lot of things to fix before they are real threats to win a championship.

The biggest issue on the team right now is the offensive line. Quarterback Derek Carr has been sacked 37 times this season, which is tied for fifth-most in the NFL and is the second-most he’s been sacked in a season in his career. The Raiders would be wise to use most of their resources this offseason to upgrade their protection. Brent Sobleski of Bleacher Report believes that Tampa Bay Buccaneers Pro Bowl center Ryan Jensen is the perfect Raider:

Can anyone think of another player in the league more perfectly suited to play for the Las Vegas Raiders than center Ryan Jensen?

Jensen is the nastiest lineman in the game. He looks to bury opponents every chance he gets. He’s exactly the type of tone-setter Las Vegas currently lacks after letting the majority of its veteran starters go and reworking the offensive line this past offseason.

More importantly, Jensen is arguably the game’s best center.

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Andre James Has Played Well as of Late

There’s no denying that Jensen is a good center but is he good enough for the Raiders to spend a ton of money on? Current center Andre James had a horrific start to the season. Throughout the first few games, he was giving Carr bad snaps and just not blocking well. However, he’s turned things around in a major way.

According to Pro Football Focus, James has been a top-10 center in the NFL since Week 10.

On the season, James is rated as the 24th best center while Jensen is the 13th. Considering the Raiders already moved on from one aging Pro Bowl center last year, it doesn’t make sense to spend big money on a different aging center this offseason. Plus, James already received a contract extension in the offseason. The Raiders think he’s the center of the future and his play as of late has proven the team correct.

Raiders Need a Right Tackle

The Raiders used a first-round pick on Alex Leatherwood in hopes he’d be the right tackle of the future. After a poor start to the season, the team moved him to right guard. He’s played better but still isn’t great. It’s possible that the Raiders still see him as the right tackle of the future but with a new head coach possibly coming in, he won’t be so attached to the idea if Leatherwood continues to struggle.

Kolton Miller is a stud at left tackle and James has earned the starting center job. Every other position on the offensive line is a question mark. The most important thing will be to figure out right tackle. Once they do that, they should also consider making changes at right and left guard.

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Roy Douglas
Roy Douglas
1 year ago

with Gruden gone maybe we can have a half decent draft Leatherwood isn’t quite a bust but unless he shows something he’s pretty close