SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, NV — Andrew Whitworth has seen some great pass-rush duos in his day and he thinks the Las Vegas Raiders’ new sack tandem has huge potential.
Whitworth certainly knows something about Chandler Jones’ game. Whitworth, who just retired after a 16-year NFL career as a standout tackle, spent the past five years with the Los Angeles Rams. Of course, one of his biggest NFC West rivals was Jones during Whitworth’s stay with the Rams.
Silver and Black Pride caught up with Whitworth on Wednesday at the American Century Celebrity Golf Tournament and he gushed about Jones and his fit with the Raiders. Jones signed a three-year, $51 million contract with Las Vegas in free agency in March.
“He’s been a consistent top-level pass rusher for years,” Whitworth said. “You always had to prepare for him. He’s just very consistent and you always know he is going to be one of the best pass rushers in the league. It’s a very good signing for the Raiders.”
Since Whitworth started playing the same division as Jones, the pass-rusher registered, at least, 10.5 sacks in the four years in which he was healthy, highlighted by a 19-sack season in 2019.
Whitworth thinks Jones and fellow pass-rush maven Maxx Crosby can help each other and he is interested to see the success they can have to together. Whitworth mentioned some great pass-rush tandems such Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware during the past decade and thinks Crosby and Jones can give the Raiders a similar, dominant pass-rush tandem presence.
“The thing about is, they already have Maxx on the other side, so they can really do some things together,” Whitworth said. “Offenses really have to account for those guys. They’re very similar. They’re both speed guys who never stop ... They can be really good together.”
Whitworth also added that Crosby and Jones’ presence can be bolstered because Las Vegas improved its offense this offseason with the trade for superstar wide receiver Davante Adams.
“They should score more points and that helps the good defenses with pass-rushers,” Whitworth explained. “If they can play deep into the games with a lead, and they should, that will help a team with good pass-rushers because the other team is going to trying to catch up ... It should interesting.”