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Raiders-Broncos Week 4 preview: Can Chandler Jones get hot against Russell Wilson?

Struggling Raiders’ pass-rusher has had success against the Denver QB in the past

Syndication: Arizona Republic
Chandler Jones pressures Russell Wilson in Week 18 of 221 season
Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK

Perhaps seeing Russell Wilson lined up across him will finally spark Chandler Jones’ time in a Las Vegas Raiders’ uniform ... something has to.

While the Raiders’ problems have been myriad in an unexpected 0-3 start, Jones’ issues is certainly part of the losing formula thus far in Las Vegas. Chandler has six tackles, no sacks and four quarterback hits in three games. He has essentially been a no-show so far after being a big-ticket addition by the Raider’s new brass, which was familiar with him from New England. Jones, 32, signed a three-year $52.5 million deal this offseason with a whopping $34 million in guaranteed money.

While Jones, who has 107.5 career sacks (third most among active players), has been an early disappointment with Raiders, maybe this week will spark him. The Raiders are hosting Wilson and the Denver Broncos on Sunday at Allegiant Stadium with a 1:25 p.m. PT kickoff.

Chandler has sacked Wilson 16.5 times in their careers. it’s the second most any player has sacked any quarterback this century.

Las Vegas defensive coordinator Patrick Graham is familiar with Jones’ history of success against Wilson.

“Well, I hope Russell is blocking Chandler, that would help. (laughter) No, I remember his first sack against Russell, it was in 2012,” Graham said. “I remember that was Chandler’s rookie year, that was his first sack. He’s good friends with Russell, I believe. And I know Russ from when he was younger, and it’s always a challenge to go against him. I mean, he was a rookie my third or fourth year in the league, and he came back with four minutes left, they were down by 12 and they won the game in Seattle. So, it’s always exciting to play against him and you include the Super Bowl that we played against them, it’s always exciting. But you have to ask Chandler what he’s thinking about it, but I know they’re friends and they’re probably excited to go against each other. But they don’t directly go against each other.”

Overall, Graham knows Jones’ production has been minimal so far this season, but he is hopeful for success by the veteran.

“Each year is different. When you watch the tape and see where people are having their production…everybody’s looking for the statistics and stuff like that. The impact, one, off the field, two, the attention they bring that allows other people to play more freely,” Graham said. “It’s a long season and I know this, Chandler works hard. I know the only thing Chandler is worried about, just knowing him for a long time, is about wins. So, regardless of what the production was, or what it could have been, Chandler cares about winning. Just like the people here in this building, we care about winning. So, that’s the number one thing. Once we start winning, we’ll be happy there.”

Perhaps facing Wilson is the elixir Jones and the Raiders need.