For as long as most fans can remember, the Las Vegas Raiders have fielded subpar defensive units that have cost the team several games over the years.
The Raiders finished the 2022 season 6-11, with most of their wins coming on the back of the offense scoring enough to keep teams at bay. However, simply scoring as much as possible isn’t the most sustainable strategy meaning that Las Vegas’ defense has to step up in 2023 if they want to compete in a crowded AFC.
Surprisingly, though, the defense has looked better than most anticipated so far in training camp as they’ve been making plays. Turnovers were an issue last season, but the Raiders defense has been all over quarterbacks in practice with passes defensed and interceptions.
Jakobi Meyers has been on the other side of the defense and noted how hungry they look so far via Levi Edwards of Raiders.com:
Jakobi Meyers on Raiders defense: “They’re hungry. … You can feel the speed, they thumping. If they keep playing like that and we do our part, we’ll be decent.”
— Levi Edwards (@theleviedwards) August 11, 2023
It’s a very encouraging sign to hear positive reviews of the defense considering how woeful they’ve been. Aside from Maxx Crosby, the Raiders haven’t employed many high-level difference-makers to affect games, but it seems they may finally be turning a corner.
Marcus Peters’ signing has clearly invigorated the rest of the secondary as his experience and ball-hawking has raised the level of play. Marcus Epps has also been a valuable resource to his younger peers and his steadiness should come in handy in game situations.
While it might be tempting to get excited over the defense’s progress so far, fans have to temper expectations until the games count for real. However, some optimism at this juncture of the summer is great to have.
Davante Adams believes Jakobi Meyers is savvy player
Davante Adams is set to be the focal point of the Raiders offense again, but this season he’ll have more help in the form of Meyers. Meyers is coming off a solid season and appears ready to assume the No. 2 role behind Adams.
Although the two haven’t shared the field too much together, Adams has already been impressed with what he’s seen from Meyers. He called the former Patriot a savvy player when it comes to his route running and believes that there are things he can learn from him.