Raiders sign the perfect player to terrorize Patrick Mahomes: Grading the deal

Chris Jones was never going to be an option for the Raiders, but they have someone now that fits the bill of an explosive interior disruptor.

Las Vegas Raiders v Kansas City Chiefs
Las Vegas Raiders v Kansas City Chiefs / Jamie Squire/GettyImages

The first major splash of the free-agency period is the Las Vegas Raiders' decision to sign free-agent defensive tackle Christian Wilkins.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that is Wilkins signing a 4-year, $110 million base value deal that includes $84.75M million guaranteed. It's not as big as the Chris Jones deal that Kansas City offered, but it's still a monumental investment for Antonio Pierce's team and one that made the most sense.

This acquisition demonstrates the team's commitment to bolstering its defense and staying competitive in the challenging AFC West. In a division known for its high-powered offenses, having a formidable defensive presence is crucial, and Wilkins brings exactly that to the table.

Grading the Christian Wilkins signing by the Las Vegas Raiders

For anyone that wasn't aware, the Raiders still have Maxx Crosby on their roster, and adding an impact player like Wilkins takes pressure off Crosby. Furthermore, Pierce knows about elite defensive line play, see Super Bowl XLII when Pierce, then a player with the New York Giants, saw Michael Strahan and friends dominate Tom Brady and the Patriots in a 17-14 victory.

Also, as stated before, the AFC West features elite quarterbacks like Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert, making it imperative for the Raiders to find ways to disrupt their rhythm from within. Wilkins excels in this area, showcasing impressive explosiveness and agility that allows him to penetrate opposing offensive lines consistently.

His ability to contribute against both the run and pass makes him a well-rounded player capable of adapting to various situations on the field. This versatility allows the Raiders' coaching staff to tailor their defensive schemes to exploit opponents' weaknesses effectively. Interior disruptors can make anything possible.

Additionally, Wilkins' work ethic, leadership qualities, and professionalism make him a positive influence in the locker room, fostering a culture of excellence and accountability. As the Raiders aim to make a playoff push, having players with both talent and character is crucial for team cohesion and success.

Grade: A+

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