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Raiders need Maxx Crosby to finish the season strong

Pass rusher has gone five games without a sack

Kansas City Chiefs v Las Vegas Raiders
Maxx Crosby
Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

If the Las Vegas Raiders’ struggling defense is going to make some strides in the last two games of the season, they will need a resurgence from standout pass rusher Maxx Crosby.

The second-year defensive end hasn’t had a sack in the past five games, and has only totally six sacks on the season. Crosby, a fourth-round pick in 2019, had 10 sacks last season as a rookie. He currently has 33 tackles total in 2020 after having 47 tackles in 2019.

Crosby has played a ton this season and has racked up a lot of work and it may be showing:

Last Friday, Raiders coach Jon Gruden was asked if he thought Crosby may be wearing down a bit and Gruden had an interesting answer.

“He’s probably getting a little worn down and he’s getting a lot of attention,” Gruden said. “Getting chipped, getting the tight end that way to nudge him on the way out. It’s been tough for him. We haven’t had a real consistent inside rush, which is tough on edge rushers. That’s an area we need to improve, but I love Crosby. I love his effort and he’s got a great amount of football character. He’s going to be a really good Raider for years to come.”

There is no doubt Crosby should be part of the long-term plan in Las Vegas. But the Raiders need to help him with more pass rushers and a dominant defensive tackle never hurts, either.

If the Raiders get better around Crosby. he will have a chance to play a little less and perhaps be more effective over the course of a full season.