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Raiders’ defense still has multiple gaps to be filled

There are lingering needs in the secondary as we count down to the NFL draft

NFL: JAN 03 Raiders at Broncos
Raiders’ defense
Photo by Dustin Bradford/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

We previously looked at where the Las Vegas Raiders’ offense stands at this point in the offseason (basically between free agency and the draft, which starts on April 29).

Now, it’s on to the defense.

Defensive line:
This is the one layer of the unit that is likely set. There is just not any more room after the Raiders added Yannick Ngakoue, Solomon Thomas, Quinton Jefferson, Matt Dickerson and Darius Philon in free agency.

There will be real competition for available roster spots but caveat here, however, is if the Raiders really love a pass rusher in the draft, I can see them adding one in the early rounds. That would be smart as you can never get enough pass rushers.

Miami Dolphins v Las Vegas Raiders
Kyle Wilber
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Linebackers:
The Raiders re-signed Nicholas Morrow, and they have Cory Littleton and Nick Kwiatkoski both heading into their second season with the team. Still, I can see Las Vegas adding to this spot as they could use some more depth. I could see Kyle Wilber being in the mix as well. Drafting a linebacker early to develop wouldn’t be the worst idea, either.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 14 TCU at West Virginia
Trevon Moehrig
Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Secondary:
The Raiders haven’t yet added a free safety (they need a starter) or a veteran cornerback in free agency. The safety will likely come early in the draft with Trevon Moehrig of TCU and Richie Grant of Central Florida being top candidates. So, this layer is still a work in progress.

Bottom line:
The defensive line is better, but this unit still needs more impact additions for it to have a chance to improve greatly in 2021.