In releasing the veteran defensive back, Raiders Jon Gruden is counting on his young cornerbacks to deliver ahead of the start of the 2020 season.
The news of the Raiders Jon Gruden releasing veteran cornerback Prince Amukamara on Monday was perhaps Las Vegas’ first surprising cut since the end training camp but it wasn’t a shock. The Prince Amukamara release may have caught some by surprise, but it’s indicative of how the organization feels about its young cornerback room.
Throughout Raiders training camp in 2020, rookie cornerback Damon Arnette, the team’s second-round draft pick from Ohio State, has shined. He’s been everything and more and validated what both general manager Mike Mayock and Gruden had seen in him coming out of college.
Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther likes what he sees out of Arnette and wasn’t at all surprised by his performance.
“That’s why we drafted him. He’s not scared, he’s real patient at
the line of scrimmage,” Guenther said last month of Arnette. “He trusts his speed and technique. And that’s really what we expect of him each and every day when he goes out there. I don’t understand, it’s a good play but that’s what he’s supposed to do, that’s why we brought him here and we’re excited to have him.”
With Arnette playing so well, and second-year pro-Trayvon Mullen also going toe-to-toe with the Raiders talented receivers, clearly, Mayock and Gruden felt comfortable with the Prince Amukamara release.
The Prince Amukamara release also is a relief to those worried about Mullen’s recent injury. He was back on the Raiders practice field on Monday and appears ready to resume full-contact going forward.
The Raiders Jon Gruden has always been labeled as a veterans coach – preferring more experienced players to young talented players who lack NFL game experience. So far in 2020, Gruden has destroyed that narrative as the Raiders continue their youth movement.
It now appears Isaiah Johnson also will be a part of the Raiders 2020 roster plans and don’t forget: in a pinch both Damarious Randall and Lamarcus Joyner can play at cornerback if need requires.
With the Raiders Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock, it’s time to rest their fate on the shoulders of the young players they believed enough in to select and make part of their plans.