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Raiders Could Pursue Major Defensive Piece In Free Agency

The Las Vegas Raiders have one of the best sack artists in the NFL in Maxx Crosby, but Pro Football Focus still ranked them a rather pedestrian 17th in the league in the pass rush this season.

As a result, the Raiders could stand to improve their pass rush, and Gordon McGuinness of Pro Football Focus sees the perfect target for them to pursue in order to achieve that: edge rusher Josh Uche.

Uche, who played his collegiate football at the University of Michigan, was selected by the New England Patriots in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

He played in just nine games during his rookie campaign due to a foot injury, logging nine tackles and one sack. The following year, injuries once again limited him, as Uche appeared in 12 contests and finished with 12 tackles, three sacks and a fumble recovery.

The 25-year-old then finally broke out in his third season, racking up 27 tackles, 11.5 sacks and a couple of forced fumbles in 15 games. However, this year, Uche took a major step back, totaling just 15 tackles and three sacks.

But due to the production he put forth in his third season and the fact that he is still young, Uche could be a sought after pass rusher on the free-agent market this spring.

McGuinness says that the Raiders could bring Uche in as a pass-rushing specialist to provide some support for Crosby, who racked up 14.5 sacks this year and has posted back-to-back double-digit sack campaigns.

Las Vegas is slated to own considerable cap room this offseason, so it could certainly afford to sign Uche as well as some other pieces.

The Raiders went 8-9 in 2023. They have made just two playoff appearances since 2003 and have not won a playoff game since January 2003, when they made it all the way to the Super Bowl.

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