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Raiders bring back Johnathan Hankins

Veteran defensive tackle has played for Patrick Graham in the past

Las Vegas Raiders v Dallas Cowboys
Johnathan Hankins
Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

The Las Vegas Raiders defensive tackle position is changing drastically in 2022, but there will be a familiar face in the group. The Raiders are reportedly bringing back defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins.

Hankins’ return is not a surprise since he has previously played under new Las Vegas defensive coordinator Patrick Graham. Graham was the New York Giants’ defensive line coach in 2016. Graham complemented Hankins when talking to the media recently.

Hankins has been a big part of the Raiders’ defensive front since 2018. He has started all but five games in four seasons with the Raiders. He started 14 games in 2021. Hankins is strong against the run.

The Raiders have brought in defensive tackles Bilal Nichols, Vernon Butler and Kyle Peko this offseason. Nichols and Hankins will likely be at the top of the rotation. Defensive tackles Quinton Jefferson (Seattle) and Solomon Thomas (Jets) have left in free agency and Darius Philon likely won’t be back, either.

Hankins is the third unrestricted free agent to return to the Raiders and is the 24th new veteran to join the roster since free agency began. The other two are tackles Brandon Parker and Jermaine Eluemunor.