The Las Vegas Raiders’ defensive end group changed on Friday when the team made the surprising decision to release David Irving.
Irving was expected to make a strong push to make the roster. With him gone, there are currently six defensive ends who will either be on the 53-man roster or make a push to near a roster spot in Las Vegas. However, the Raiders likely won’t keep more than five defensive ends longterm.
Let’s look at the group:
The Raiders hope he is the best player on the defense, that’s why thy signed him to a two-year, $26 million deal this offseason. The Raiders expect Ngakoue to dramatically improve their sack production. He has 45.5 sacks in five NFL seasons.
The Raiders need to see more production from the No. 4 overall pick. Next spring, the Raiders will need to decide whether to give Ferrell his fifth-year option. If he doesn’t stack more strong games together, he may not get the option and become a free agent after the 2022 season.
Crosby may be on the field less this season and that could benefit him. He was overused last season and he wore down. A fresher Crosby could could leads to more sacks. I expect him to flourish with Ngakoue on the roster.
A disappointing 2020 free-agent addition, Nassib had just 2.5 sacks last season and was a healthy scratch in two games. Unless he has a major revival, this is likely his last season with the Raiders.
The Raiders will give the third-round pick time to develop. He will likely be a bottom of the rotation player this season.
The free-agent addition will likely need to have a huge preseason and training camp to make the roster. The numbers game just isn’t in his favor.