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2 Raiders who need big performances against 49ers

Final cut-down day is looming so Sunday will be a big day for these two

NFL: Jacksonville Jaguars at Oakland Raiders
Keelan Doss
Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

We’ve reached the end of the preseason. The Las Vegas Raiders will put their undefeated record on the line and head down to familiar territory this weekend for a battle against the San Francisco 49ers.

Final cutdown day is also looming as next Tuesday, the 31st every team in the NFL will have to go from 80 players on the roster to 53. That puts some added pressure on players who are on the bubble heading into Sunday, especially since the preseason was shortened this year.

Devery Hamilton

Duke v Florida State
Devery Hamilton
Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

After getting cut by the team earlier this month, Devery Hamilton resigned with the Raiders on Monday. He spent most of his time on the non-football illness list on the first go-around, but he gets a second chance to prove himself this week.

While it is a quick turnaround, Hamilton should still suit up and play against San Francisco, and his signing is likely a result of the poor pass protection the team has been getting from Jaryd Jones-Smith and Patrick Omamah. Those two have looked like their feet are stuck in cement this month, combining to allow 13 pressures and five sacks in just two games, per PFF.

Granted, Hamilton doesn’t have a track record of success in that department either. He gave up 25 pressures on 468 pass-blocking snaps as a senior in college and recorded a PFF pass-blocking grade in the low 60s.

Regardless, the former Blue Devil has an unprecedented opportunity to either make the 53-man roster or practice squad after not having a home in the NFL just a week ago.

Hopefully, he’s been working on his pass sets during the time off so he can step in and contribute to what is currently looking like a potential week spot on Las Vegas’ roster.

Keelan Doss

NFL: Oakland Raiders at Green Bay Packers
Keelan Doss
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been a rough preseason so far for Keelan Doss.

Doss has only caught six passes for 55 yards and no touchdowns and has the second-lowest yards per route run (1.22) among wide receivers on the team with at least two targets. On top of that, he had a bad drop last week that led to an interception last week, and he has only averaged about 1.3 yards after the catch per reception.

Obviously, the third-year pro could use a big performance on Sunday to help his case to stick around on the practice squad at the very least.

However, Doss did get some help from the roster cuts this week. Marcel Ateman was waived on Tuesday, leaving DJ Turner and Dillon Stoner as Doss’ biggest competitors to stay in Las Vegas, in whatever capacity that might be.

As rookies, Turner and Stoner have youth on their side as an advantage over the veteran pass-catcher, so that puts even more pressure on the latter as he returns home to the Bay Area. Hopefully, a little home cooking will reignite the Alameda native so he can continue to show the potential he displayed back in the 2019 preseason.