One of the positions that the Raiders are expected to add to in free agency is at linebacker. Denzel Perryman is a free agent and Divine Deablo just hasn’t quite made the leap everyone was anticipating.
With nearly $40 million in cap space, the Raiders will look to improve the defense on all three levels. So you can expect them to have some serious interest in the top linebackers on the market.
In a recent article by Pro Football Focus, they named the most likely destination for the top 50 free agents set to hit the market next week. The Raiders were named the top fit for free-agent LB Lavonte David, who looks to be moving on from Tampa Bay this offseason.
Here is why the site believes the Raiders make so much sense for the former All-Pro linebacker:
Currently, the only Raiders linebackers under contract for 2023 are Luke Masterson and Darien Butler, both of whom were undrafted rookies in 2022. There is a massive need to get a leader in the middle of this defense, and there might not be a better player to do so than David, who has been the epitome of consistency for the Buccaneers’ defense, stringing together six straight years with a 72.0-plus PFF grade.
He would help rejuvenate the Raiders’ linebacker room, which has struggled to find a top-end guy at that position for years. The Raiders had bottom-five defense when opposing offenses threw over the middle of the field according to EPA per play and success rate allowed.
David just turned 33 years old this offseason and it’s clear that he wouldn’t be a long-term option for the Raiders. However, he is still one of the best linebackers in the league and would be a great addition for the 2023 season (at least).
Considering his age and the position he plays, David shouldn’t break the bank for the Raiders. But if they want to add a legitimate superstar to their defense, David does make a lot of sense for Las Vegas at the right price.