Raiders depth will need to come up strong vs. Steelers

Gruden discusses injuries
Dec 13, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders running back Josh Jacobs (28) against Indianapolis Colts linebacker Anthony Walker (45) at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Raiders came away with a big win on Monday night against the Baltimore Ravens, but by checking out the injury list on Friday, that win took a toll that will really challenge the Raiders depth.

This week, the Raiders will face a Steelers team without top running back Josh Jacobs among 16 players on the injury report. Game time is 10 a.m. Pacific time in Pittsburgh.

Besides Jacobs, also listed as out are guard Richie Incognito, linebacker Nick Kwiatkowski, quarterback Marcus Mariota and safety Roderick Teamer.

And that’s not counting starting guard Denzelle Good and defensive lineman Gerald McCoy, who were both lost for the season after being placed on the injured list.

Raiders depth
Raiders DE Yannick Ngakoue

Listed as questionable are defensive lineman Carl Nassib, Yannick Ngakoue and Darius Philon, although coach Jon Gruden has stated that Ngakoue will play.

The other players listed on the injured list didn’t have a game status, meaning they should be able to play.

On the other hand, the Steelers have only defensive tackle Carlos Davis listed as out, along with cornerback Joel Haden, linebacker Devin Bush and tight end Zach Gentry listed as questionable.

Ferrell gets chance to show he’s more than just a Raiders depth piece

Clelin Ferrell was the fourth overall pick in the 2019 draft for the Raiders, but in the first week of play was a healthy scratch. In the offseason, he was expected to be a starter.

Raiders depth
Aug 14, 2021; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Clelin Ferrell (99) looks on during the second quarter against the Seattle Seahawks at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Now, he gets another shot due to injuries. Coach Gus Bradley said he had a good week of practice. 

“I think for us just monitoring that and deciding at that point maybe the needs what we see,” Bradley said. “We felt like this was a team that can really just line up and pound us last week. So, that’s on a week-to-week basis, but he’s practicing really well. He practiced well today.”

Bradley said although Ferrell wasn’t active against the Ravens, he was very active on the sidelines providing encouragement to the team.

“You know what, he is a true pro now,” Bradley said. “He was on the sideline probably being one of our biggest cheerleaders. He was outstanding, and I talked to him about that. He was fantastic. That’s tough to go through.”

Square will offer even more Raiders depth

Besides Ferrell, the Raiders brought in Damion Square to provide versatility on the defensive front. Bradley said he can play multiple positions.

“He can play nose, three-technique, big end,” Bradley said. “At this point in time with some of the injuries he comes in. I think he’s a quick study as far as understanding of what we are asking of the position. He could step in and play fairly quickly if needed.”