One area the Las Vegas Raiders badly needed to improve on from last season was their ability to rush the passer. Aside from Maxx Crosby, the Raiders had no one else who could consistently get to the quarterback and came into this season hoping veteran Chandler Jones and first-round pick Tyree Wilson would provide the support necessary and improve the Raiders’ pass rush.
Unfortunately, that has not been the case. Jones was released following a string of troubling social media posts and eventual arrest. Meanwhile, Wilson has yet to make much of an impact, with just five tackles and no sacks. As such, the Raiders once again find themselves near the bottom of the league in sacks and pressures.
But the Raiders are apparently trying to help their pass rush situation, as ESPN’s Dianna Russini reports the team has been making calls in an attempt to acquire a pass rusher ever since they released Jones, via Moe Moton of Bleacher Report:
I have 5 potential trade targets in mind (interior and edge-rushers)
— Moe Moton (@MoeMoton) October 12, 2023
It is an obvious need for the Raiders, as their inability to pressure the quarterback consistently is the main reason their defense has struggled this year. As a team, they have nine sacks in five games, with five of those coming from Crosby. He also has eight tackles for loss, no other Raider has more than three, and seven QB hits, no other Raider has more than two.
With Jones gone and Wilson proving to be more of a project who isn’t ready to contribute to this team, it is obvious the Raiders need to make some sort of move to bolster their defensive line. It is promising to hear that the front office is already looking to make something happen, but something will need to come to fruition soon.
If the Raiders plan on making good on their playoff hopes, that push needs to begin now before the team falls too far behind in the standings. Improvements on both sides of the ball are necessary, but defensively it is clear as day that the team must figure out some way to pressure the quarterback better.
The franchise knows the problem and is looking to address it. Hopefully, a move comes down soon as that can help relieve some of the pressure on Crosby and make the Raiders a better team overall.