Raiders News: Maxx Crosby And AJ Cole Named To NFLPA’s All-Pro First Team
Maxx Crosby, Raiders, Vikings
Dec 10, 2023; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Maxx Crosby (98) celebrates after a tackle against the Minnesota Vikings in the first half at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Despite an up-and-down season ending without a playoff appearance, the Las Vegas Raiders undoubtedly had a handful of players really stand out for their performance this season. Two of the biggest should come as no surprise as defensive end Maxx Crosby and punter AJ Cole have both been recognized as among the best at their positions for years now.

Both Crosby and Cole have been named to the Pro Bowl for three consecutive seasons, and each was also an All-Pro in 2021, with Cole making the First Team while Crosby was a Second Team selection. And now, each has been recognized by their fellow players as arguably the best the league has to offer.

The NFL Players Association announced the second annual Players’ All-Pro Team with both Maxx Crosby and AJ Cole being selected to the First Team, via Adam Schefter of ESPN:

Neither selection should come as a surprise. Crosby led the NFL in tackles for loss, was sixth in sacks and seventh in quarterback hits. Additionally, his 90 total tackles were the most of any player with at least 10 sacks, with only Minnesota’s Danielle Hunter coming within 15 tackles of the Raiders star.

Cole meanwhile, led the NFL in net punt average at 45.1 yards per punt and ranked fourth with 34 punts inside the opposing 20-yard line. Cole also booted the longest punt of this season with an 83-yard bomb in the Raiders’ Week 14 contest against the Minnesota Vikings.

While it is the players’ choices, it’s hard to imagine either Crosby or Cole being left off the AP All-Pro Team once that is announced as well. Both players are foundational pieces of this franchise and are proof that the Raiders do have some things they can build around. Crosby, in particular, has not only stepped up his play on the field but also his leadership within the locker room, setting the example and having no issues speaking on any issues going on.

The question now for the Raiders is who will be in charge once next season begins as the team must figure out who will be the permanent head coach moving forward. Crosby and many others have vouched for Antonio Pierce to keep the job, but other names have been rumored as well.

In the meantime, Crosby and Cole are getting their deserved recognition for being two of the best players in the league.