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Lynn Bowden trade shakes up Raiders’ 2020 draft class

A look at where rookie class stands on cut-down day

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Lynn Bowden
Photo by John Byrum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

One of the biggest moves in the NFL on Saturday was the Raiders’ shocking trade of third-round pick, running back Lynn Bowden to the Miami Dolphins.

While the Raiders got some value back, this is a major hit to the draft class. Bowden was the Raiders’ third overall draft pick and the No. 80 overall pick in April. He was expected to be a big part of Jon Gruden’s playbook and help make the Raiders’ offense diverse. But he wasn’t explosive on the field, he didn’t adjust to the NFL and he didn’t quite fit in with the team.

It’s the first draft black eye for the Raiders since Mike Mayock was hired in 2019. While the Bowden dump is disappointing, the Raiders can still get a lot of value out of this rookie class.

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Damon Arnette
Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

It starts, of course, with first-round picks, receiver Henry Ruggs II and cornerback Damon Arnette. Both Ruggs and Arnette have looked good in training camp and both are poised to start. Thus, they can both be key factors in 2020.

Receiver Bryan Edwards, taken one pick after Bowden, is another rookie who is likely going to get a chance to start. With starter Tyrell Williams out for the season with a torn labrum and Edwards looking great in camp, Edwards and Ruggs can be the first pair of rookies to start at receiver since Louis Murphy and Darrius Heyward-Bey did 11 years ago.

Clemson linebacker Tanner Muse, the team’s third third-round pick, has been slow to develop in training camp, but he will get a chance to play as a special teamer.

Fourth-round pick, guard John Simpson is a backup and could possibly start in 2021. The team’s final draft pick, cornerback Amik Robertson, came on strong toward the end of camp and be a backup slot cornerback.

While the Bowden move hurts, the Raiders are poised to still get a lot of their 2020 rookie class.