True NFL free agency doesn’t start until March 17th but that doesn’t mean teams can’t start signing players to Reserve/Future contracts. The Las Vegas Raiders have already signed over 10 players to these contracts and are adding another one to the list. According to the team’s website, they’ve signed former Washington Football Team and Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Trey Quinn.
Quinn originally came into the NFL as Mr. Irrelevant in 2018 when he was the last pick in the draft. In his two seasons in Washington, he started in eight of 15 games. His best season was in 2019 when he caught 26 passes for 198 yards and a touchdown. Quinn was in the NFL last season but only played in one game for the Jaguars and didn’t put up any stats. He fits the mold of a slot receiver but probably isn’t taking Hunter Renfrow‘s job.
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Is WR a Need for the Raiders?
Whether or not the Raiders need help at wide receiver is a really tough question to answer. Nelson Agholor led the team’s wide receivers in yards with 896 and was quarterback Derek Carr’s second-most reliable target behind tight end Darren Waller. Agholor is a free agent and while the Raiders reportedly would like to keep him, it’s possible he gets a big offer from a different team this offseason.
If he leaves, the Raiders could be in trouble. Bryan Edwards and Henry Ruggs have potential but they both had disappointing rookie years. It’s far from a guarantee that either player will turn into a reliable target. If Agholor walks, wide receiver might actually be a need for the Raiders. The team really needs to focus on fixing their defense this offseason but they can’t completely ignore the offense. It’s shaping up to be a very tricky offseason for the silver and black.
Raiders Want Ruggs to Play Faster
You would think that the last problem with Ruggs’ game would be speed. The former Alabama standout ran a 4.27 40-yard dash at last year’s NFL Scouting Combine, which was faster than any other player in the draft. However, Ruggs didn’t seem to make a ton of plays during his rookie season. He finished the year with 452 receiving yards, which was 11th among rookie wide receivers. Considering he was the first wide receiver taken in the 2020 NFL Draft, those numbers aren’t good enough.
According to The Athletic’s Vic Tafur, the Raiders didn’t think Ruggs played fast enough, and that’s why they didn’t design a ton of plays for him.
“While the 5-11, 188-pound Ruggs is obviously fast, the Raiders want him to play faster, especially in getting in and out of his breaks,” Tafur wrote. “It’s the biggest reason fans didn’t see as many slants or intermediate catches as anticipated.”
Ruggs will likely be the fastest guy on the field at all times over the next several years. There’s no excuse for him to not be playing fast enough. He’s got a lot of work to do this offseason but there’s still a good shot he becomes an impact player for the Raiders.