In a season seemingly plagued by injuries, the Las Vegas Raiders, unsurprisingly, have a solid amount of players on week-to-week injury reports. Some of the more detrimental injuries include right tackles Trent Brown and Sam Young.
Coming into the season, the Raiders’ offensive line was being regarded not only as one of the most expensive but as one of the best in the NFL. Brown was certainly one of the key aspects to the lofty expectations surrounding the team’s offensive line, and with him being out since early in the first quarter of Week 1, the Raiders are starting to miss him.
With Brown out, Derek Carr and the Raiders have been struggling with slowing down the pass rush, allowing five sacks in their last two games. Brown’s injury also may slow down the Raiders attempting to establish a run game on the right side. Injuries, in general, are frustrating. When Brown goes down, it seems as if there is typically a suspiciously long delay to his returns. Brown missed five games last season with a pectoral injury. This year, he sat out a majority of training camp citing injury concerns. In Week 1, he injured his calf three plays into the 2020 season.
To be fair, Brown may just want to make sure he is completely healthy before returning. That may not fit Jon Gruden’s style. Gruden, a well-known lover and appreciator of grit and playing through injuries, has voiced his support for players fighting through injuries. The problem here is that Brown is the highest-paid offensive lineman in the game today, and cutting him would destroy the team’s salary cap.
On a positive note, the Raiders have done a decent job filling their roster deep enough to withstand injury. Sam Young did a decent job in his replacement role before also getting injured. Losing two linemen from the same position could be crushing. Yet, the Raiders made it work, slotting guard Denzelle Good at the right tackle position. A football layman may look at the guard and tackle positions and think they’re similar. However, to linemen, these are two different languages. Good accomplished more than enough in a foreign land. This week, Brown practiced. As a result, hopes remain high that he can play on Sunday.