Oakland Raiders’ first-round selection Khalil Mack has two targets for his debut NFL season: Win the Rookie of the Year Award and sack Peyton Manning.
“I want to prove that they got a top guy,” Mack said, via the Raiders’ website. “My goal for my rookie season is to be defensive rookie of the year.”
To accomplish his first goal, he may have to accomplish his second. He’s itching to get to Nov. 9, when he can finally put a lick on Peyton Manning.
“I’m looking forward to playing against Peyton Manning,” Mack said. “I think going against the best quarterback in the game right now is going to be a big deal. Especially if you can put him on his back.”
Manning torched the Raiders last season for 640 yards, seven touchdowns and no interceptions. Even in the context of Peyton Manning’s ridiculous season, those stats are brutal. What’s worse, they didn’t get a sack. Raiders defensive line coach, Terrell Williams hopes that Mack can make an immediate impact.
Mack joins Justin Tuck and Lamaar Woodley on the Raiders list of pass rushers. He was a prolific pass rusher at University of Buffalo last year, where he accounted for 10.5 sacks, and a total 28.5 in his four seasons with the team. He also had 327 tackles with 75 for loss and four interceptions.
Mack’s urgency to put Manning on his back shows he’s got his priorities straight — as far as the Raiders’ nation is concerned. They, no doubt, hope that he can match his sack total in the coming season and toughen up the Raider defense.