The Las Vegas Raiders have high expectations for rookie wide receiver Henry Ruggs as they hope he will be one of the key players in the offense for the years to come. The Raiders used their No. 12 pick in this year's NFL draft on Alabama product Ruggs, who is already one of the fastest players in the league.
Last offseason, the Raiders signed seven-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Antonio Brown but he never played a game in Raiders jersey after getting in a dispute with the team officials. "Ruggs is going to pick up what AB was supposed to do last season," one Raiders source told Bleacher Report.
"This is a mature bunch of young receivers, but they're attacking camp like pros. Carr loves them already." The Raiders have a talented offensive rotation that features quarterback Derek Carr, running back Josh Jacobs, tight end Darren Waller and wide receiver Tyrell Williams.
"You want a basketball team at receiver, they say," one Raiders coach said. "We have ours with Ruggs running point and a whole lot of scorers around him."
The Raiders believe Ruggs wasn't the only good addition the team added this offseason
"[General manager Mike] Mayock really set the table for this team," one Raiders scout said.
"He brings in Cory Littleton and Damarious Randall to fix the middle of the field, then gets Derek legit weapons in the draft. This is a good roster." The Raiders hope defensive tackle Maurice Hurst and defensive end Arden Key will have a big 2020 season.
"The one thing with Arden and Maurice is, they came in here and they didn't really have anybody to look at from a veteran's perspective to say, 'Hey, this is how you are supposed to do it. This is how you're supposed to prepare.
This is the technique,'" Raiders defensive coordinator Paul Guenther said, per the team's website. "And so, those guys got thrown into the fire right away without having the ability of somebody in front of them like Maliek [Collins] to show them the way."
Defensive line coach Rod Marinelli is also positive about Hurst and Key. "I've really enjoyed working with them a lot," Marinelli said. "They got good talent, they got good movement and just keep getting them locked in and the consistency of how we do things every second of every day.
Consistency. When you get to consistency, you start building mental toughness. So, that's the thing I'm looking for. I think they got the skill, the work to improve our skills. So far, so good, but I believe in them and they're working hard."