The Las Vegas Raiders secondary has long been an issue for the team, but they’re hoping that their offseason additions of Marcus Epps and Marcus Peters can turn things around.
Epps is coming off the best year of his career after starting all 17 games for the Philadelphia Eagles, while Peters is looking to bounce back from a torn ACL he suffered in 2021. Both veterans bring a wealth of knowledge and experience at their position, something that should greatly help the young defensive backs on the Raiders roster.
Nate Hobbs is looking to return to form after an injury-riddled 2022 season, and so far he has been busy learning from his new veterans.
“Man, MP [Marcus Peters], I just think his football IQ is on another level,” Hobbs said. “His instincts, his feet, body position. A guy like that, he just brings a whole new energy to our defense and there’s nothing like having a vet back there who can just see everything, it’s crazy to me. It’s like he’s in practice and a walk-through, so slow. And then Marcus Epps, man he’s a general out there, he knows what he’s doing, he’s getting everybody in the right position, and he just knows the defense like the back of his hand. He’s always in the right spot, always knows the right call to make. So I think that’s just real valuable additions to our defense that’s going to take our defensive back position to the next level.”
Hobbs had a promising rookie season that made him look like a long-term piece for Las Vegas but was unable to build on that in 2022 as injuries forced him to miss multiple games. Now, though, he’s healthy and figures to be a big part of Patrick Graham’s defense.
The third-year cornerback shows great ball and field awareness and competes on every snap. Those traits have served him well so far, but learning from people like Peters and Epps should only help him grow and develop more.
Tre’Von Moehrug picking Marcus Epps’s brain
Hobbs isn’t the only young player learning from Epps as Tre’Von Moehrig has been busy picking the former Eagles’ brain. During training camp, Moehrig has been spending time with Epps and building their on-field chemistry.
It’s a great sign that Moehrig is seeking out Epps and he should also be able to improve himself and make more of an impact in the secondary in 2023.