Oakland Raiders WR Martavis Bryant’s career so far has been a whirlwind, to say the least. The Steelers owned high expectations when he snared 14 touchdowns in his first two seasons. However, life went immediately downhill ever since. In 2016, he was suspended for the entire season for violating the NFL drug abuse policy. As a result, last year, he seemed to lose his spot as the Pittsburgh Steelers’ second wide receiver to Juju Smith-Schuster.
During the 2018 NFL Draft. Pittsburgh traded him to the Oakland Raiders for a third round draft pick. However, the team cut Bryant before the regular season, due to allegations of another suspension looming. Luckily, for him and the Raiders, they brought Bryant back before the Week 2 game vs. Denver. Bryant is a great addition to the football team. He is a tall, strong, and fast receiver that can stretch the field. Moreover, that factor alone will help not only him get open, but help Amari Cooper and Jordy Nelson. His presence alone allows Amari Cooper to play more slot. If Bryant can hold onto the ball, the Raiders will see big plays.
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In return, Cooper benefits with the ability to use crossers and finding soft spots in zones. Moreover, teams will either cover one of them with a third corner. Under those circumstances, the Raiders benefit. Jon Gruden plans to use Bryant as a matchup nightmare. Motioning him to not only distinguish which defense the opponent shows, but to try to match him up on a smaller corner. Many will struggle against Bryant’s 6’4 210 frame.
While his stats do not leap out, considering he was thrown right into the game after being signed 3 weeks ago. Currently, Bryant tallied nine receptions for 111 yards, but no touchdowns yet. The Raiders and their fans should be excited about what Bryant brings to this offense. In essence, he gives the team a vertical threat that will make life easier for everyone. If Derek Carr steps into his throws, Bryant will find green. Yet, the question remains, if whether the Raiders will use Bryant properly.