The Las Vegas Raiders are looking to get back on track against the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 15 after a tough loss to the Indianapolis Colts.
It has been a week of adjustments after the Raiders fired defensive coordinator Paul Guenther. Head Coach Jon Gruden will now be relying on Rod Marinelli as the interim for the rest of the 2020 NFL season.
Unfortunately, Marinelli has not had much time in the new role before his big test with their Thursday night matchup versus the Chargers. To make matters worse, it seems this group will be shorthanded.
Safety Johnathan Abram, cornerback Damon Arnette, linebacker Nicholas Morrow, and defensive end Clelin Ferrell have all been ruled out, per Tashan Reed of The Athletic:
S Johnathan Abram (concussion/knee), CB Damon Arnette (concussion), LB Nicholas Morrow (concussion) and DE Clelin Ferrell (shoulder) will NOT play Thursday.
— Tashan Reed (@tashanreed) December 16, 2020
There is no question that losing four key starters will leave some rather notable voids in the defense. As if Marinelli’s new job was not hard enough, he will now have to find a way to make do with the healthy players at his disposal.
The Raiders already made efforts to shore up some quality depth in the secondary by bringing back defensive back Daryl Worley. His versatility should help pay some dividends as this group tries to recover over these last three games of the season.
Defensive end Vic Beasley has also been signed to the active roster from the practice squad after registering just one tackle in two games this year. Meanwhile, Defensive end Takkarist McKinley is still waiting to make his return after coming off injured reserve.
Aside from the notable losses on the defensive side of the ball, Las Vegas will also be without its deep threat in wide receiver Henry Ruggs III. The rookie had started to come on as of late following a slow start to the season, however, his placement on the Reserve/COVID-19 list this week has taken him out of action.
The Raiders can at least take solace in the fact that the Chargers will also be short-handed as wide receivers Mike Williams and Keenan Allen are both injured as well.