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Expect to see plenty of double tight end sets in Josh McDaniels’ offense

New Raiders head coach will likely use both Darren Waller and Foster Moreau often in 2022

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers at Las Vegas Raiders
Foster Moreau
Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

During the Josh McDaniels interview process with the Las Vegas Raiders, it was reported that he pushed his plan to aggressively use double tight-end sets in the offense if he got the job.

Now that McDaniels is secured as the Raiders’ coach, it would be wise to fully buy into that possibility. In fact, bank on it. The double tight-end sets have long been a major, invested aspect of the New England Patriots’ offense. Of course, McDaniels spent the past decade as the Patriots’ offensive coordinator.

So surely expect the Raiders to employ that aspect in their primary offensive attack, it makes it easier that Las Vegas is equipped to use the double tight-end set often with star TE Darren Waller and valuable fourth-year player Foster Moreau.

One can look at New England’s past success to get an idea of what kind of dual impact Waller and Moreau can make on this offense.

NFL: Super Bowl LIII-New England Patriots vs Los Angeles Rams
Rob Gronkowski
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Early last decade, the Patriots’ offense featured both tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez. The team paid them both handsomely and and had one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL. In 2011-12 (McDaniels returned to the Patriots in 2012), Gronkowski had a total of 203 targets and Hernandez had a total of 196 targets. That is a lot considering that missed a combined total of 13 games in that two-season stretch.

This last offseason, New England invested in free-agent tight ends Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith to help complete their offensive vision. Smith was a disappointment, but he and Henry still combined to get 120 targets in McDaniels’ offense in 2021.

Waller missed six games, but still had 93 targets. He had 117 targets in 2019 (16 games) and 145 targets in 2020 (16 games).Moreau, who started when Waller was hurt, had a career-high 30 catches on a career-high 44 targets. Seventeen of Moreau’s catches can during the stretch in which Waller was hurt last season. Expect opportunities for Moreau, who is entering the final season of his contract, to go up this year for Moreau as he should have more opportunities with a healthy Waller and a tight-end friendly play caller in McDaniels.