Throughout the offseason and early in the regular season, the Las Vegas Raiders were called upon to address their offensive line. They made small movements here and there, but nothing significant. While the team has yet to add a notable name, they added a player familiar with head coach Josh McDaniels.
The New England Patriots are trading offensive tackle Justin Herron to the Raiders for a 2024 pick swap, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
Herron was a sixth-round pick for the Patriots in 2020 and served the team primarily as a reserve tackle. In the last two seasons, he has played 28 games but only started 10 of them. The Raiders coaching staff will be well acquainted with Herron’s skills, having worked directly with offensive line coach Carmen Bricillo for the past two seasons.
Herron was a standout player at Wake Forest and was named a third-team All-ACC in 2019. The Patriots have to like what they’re doing to let him go midseason. Bill Belichick might also be doing his former subordinates a solid service by sending them a one-on-one now.
The exact terms are that the Patriots will receive a 2024 sixth-round pick, according to Mike Reiss, and send a 2024 seventh-round pick along with Herron.
After two games, the Raiders have to wish that Denzelle Good didn’t give up mid-camp and that Brandon Parker didn’t end the season with an injury. While both aren’t Pro Bowl-level players, they certainly would have been better than what the team has now. Herron has never been a full-time starter, but that could change.
Kolton Miller locked out the left tackle spot but the right tackle is a mess. Veteran journeyman Jermaine Eluemunor and seventh-round rookie Thayer Munford clearly don’t cut it in the right tackle. Eluemunor has a score of 55.1 from Pro Football Focus, while Munford has a mere 31.2. It would take Herron a lot to beat these two players. McDaniels and Bricillo should know the tackle well and wouldn’t trade for him if they didn’t think he could help. He’s unlikely to be pushed into the right tackle starting role right away, but he’ll have a chance to earn that spot in the coming weeks. At the very least, it gives the Raiders more depth on offense.
During the Raiders’ historic Week 2 loss to the Arizona Cardinals, the offensive line gave up just one sack on the first drive of the game and didn’t concede another throughout the game. However, that didn’t mean they played well. The offensive line was plagued with penalties and poor blocking. According to Pro Football Focus’ Sam Monson, the Raiders have the 31st offensive line in the NFL for two weeks: