The Las Vegas Raiders season came to an end during Super Wild Card weekend when they were defeated by the Cincinnati Bengals, who snapped an eight-game playoff losing streak and won in the postseason for the first time in 30 years. It was a disappointing defeat for the Raiders, who fell one play short of forcing overtime, but they should be proud that they even made it that far.
The Raiders’ season looked like it was going down the drain when they dropped to 6-7, wrapping up a 3-7 stretch where they had to overcome a ton of adversity. Jon Gruden resigning, Henry Ruggs III being part of a fatal crash and subsequently being released. His fellow 2020 first-round draft pick, Damon Arnette, was also released following the surfacing of a video that had him brandishing guns and putting forth violent threats.
Despite all of that, the team was able to win their last four games of the season to qualify for the playoffs. This offseason could still be one of some major changes, as they would be under new management.
General manager Mike Mayock was relieved of his duties after three seasons on Monday. Las Vegas will be looking for a new person to lead their front office and also have to figure out what to do at the head coaching position.
Rich Bisaccia did a wonderful job as the interim coach, taking over for Gruden. The players love him, but will the new general manager want to bring in their own head coach?
There are plenty of questions to answer in Las Vegas before even getting to the roster. The Raiders had one of the younger rosters in the NFL, which provides some optimism going forward. Where could they look to upgrade? Could wide receiver be a spot?
In PFF’s 2022 mock draft, that is exactly what the Raiders do. They opt to upgrade the wide receiver spot, landing Ohio State speedster, Chris Olave.
He can step right into the role that they had envisioned for Ruggs as a field-stretching deep threat, as the former track star has incredible straight-line speed. But, he does a lot more than that on the field, as he is an excellent route runner.
Despite the crowded pecking order for targets at Ohio State this season, Olave still produced some big numbers. In 11 games, he caught 65 passes for 936 yards and 13 touchdowns. Combined with Garrett Wilson, another projected first-round pick and Jaxon Smith-Njigba, a future first-round pick, Olave made up arguably the best wide receiver trio in the country in 2021.
Las Vegas would be hoping their luck turns at the wide receiver position with Olave. Ruggs didn’t pan out and Bryan Edwards, a third-round pick in 2020 out of South Carolina, hasn’t been great either.
With Zay Jones hitting free agency, the wide receiver group could use a jolt this offseason and Olave would certainly provide it.