Raiders Starting CB Ditches Team to Rejoin Gus Bradley: Report

gus bradley

Getty Indianapolis Colts defensive coordinator Gus Bradley.

The Las Vegas Raiders are undergoing major philosophical changes under new defensive coordinator Patrick Graham. He favors man-to-man coverage, blitzing and adaptability, which will be the polar opposite of how Gus Bradley ran things last year. He was a Cover 3 purist who almost never strayed from that defensive base. The team also blitzed less than any other team in the NFL last season.

Considering the defense will be so different in 2022, it’s expected that there will be personnel changes. The Raiders could still bring back some of Bradley’s guys but they are already starting to lose some. According to NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo, cornerback Brandon Facyson is signing a one-year contract with Indianapolis Colts and reuniting with Bradley, who took over as their defensive coordinator earlier in the offseason.

Facyson was one of many former Chargers who followed Bradley to the Raiders last year. He started off on the team’s bench but quickly earned a starting spot. He started nine games for the team, plus the playoff matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals. He was mostly solid for Las Vegas and should get a chance to start in Indianapolis due to his familiarity with Bradley’s defense.

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Raiders Place Tender on Dallin Leavitt

It’s been slow going at the start of free agency for the Raiders. Many of the top players are off the market. It’s clear that new general manager Dave Ziegler isn’t looking to make big splashes in his first offseason with the team. However, the team continues to work on smaller deals. Garafolo also reported that Las Vegas gave safety Dallin Leavitt the right of first refusal tender. That means the Raiders will have the right to match any free-agent offer Leavitt receives and could get compensation if he signs elsewhere.

Considering Leavitt isn’t a big-name free agent, this almost guarantees he’ll be back with the Raiders next season. He’s a solid special teams player who has played a good amount of snaps on defense. He first joined the team in 2018 as an undrafted free agent and the new regime clearly saw something they like. He’s played in 42 games with the team and should provide decent depth at safety.

Expect More of Bradley’s Guys to Leave

Bradley is one of the most respected defensive minds in the NFL and is beloved by players. Though the Raiders didn’t field an elite defense last season, he improved the group in a major way. Much of that was thanks to his ability to attract a number of talented players.

With Bradley gone, it’s likely that more of the players who followed him to Las Vegas will leave. As noted previously, Graham has a completely defensive philosophy so a lot of players from last season won’t fit. Facyson is the first shoe to drop but expect many more. The Raiders’ defensive personnel could be undergoing a major overhaul in the coming weeks.

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