Las Vegas Raiders first-round pick Damon Arnette is wearing a cast with the season fast approaching
Earlier this week, the Las Vegas Raiders made the decision to cut NFL veteran cornerback Prince Amukamara. No, it didn’t have to do with the viral video of him being juked out by receiver Hunter Renfrow, but because head coach Jon Gruden was impressed by first-round selection Damon Arnette’s play during training camp. Just days after the glowing endorsement, Arnette is dealing with an injury.
According to NFL insider Ian Rapoport, Arnette is dealing with a fracture in his right thumb and is wearing a soft cast. It’s currently unknown if Arnette will miss the regular season opener, or if he’ll play through the pain.
Damon Arnette was impressing Raiders coaches in camp
While this is seen as bad news for Arnette, he’s not new to wearing a club on his hand. Last season at Ohio State, Arnette played with a soft cast after breaking a bone in his wrist. In 11 games, Arnette recorded 35 total tackles, eight passes defended, one interception and one forced fumble.
However, Rapoport’s NFL Media colleague, Mike Garafolo, reports that the soft cast has limited his ability to jam receivers during practices.
Arnette was one of the more shocking picks of the 2020 NFL Draft. Originally expected to be a Day 2 pick, Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock opted to take him with the 19th overall pick. With many deriding the Raiders for the reaching for Arnette, the young corner appeared to be proving everyone wrong once training camp began. In fact, Arnette was shown locking down fellow first-round pick Henry Ruggs III during a one-on-one drill. That gave Las Vegas the confidence to release Amukamara.
With this latest injury, it’s unknown if Arnette will get a starting role in Las Vegas’ defense, or if he’ll take a back seat as a rotational corner until he’s 100 percent cleared from this fracture. In the event Arnette will miss time, the Raiders have Trayvon Mullen, Lamarcus Joyner, Nevin Lawson, Amik Robertson and Isaiah Johnson at their disposal.