The Las Vegas Raiders have improvements to make this offseason following a Wild Card exit in the 2021-22 NFL playoffs. One area that the Raiders need to improve on this offseason is their defense, especially when it concerns forcing turnovers.
Las Vegas forced just 0.8 turnovers per game in 2021 — third-worst in the NFL. Fortunately, the Raiders can fix that issue while also hurting the rival Kansas City Chiefs in the process if they pursue three-time first-time All-Pro safety Tyrann Mathieu in free agency.
Raiders Free Agency
Mathieu is easily one of the top names in this year's free agency class. His accolades also speak for themselves. In addition to his All-Pro honors, he's a three-time Pro-Bowler, a former Super Bowl champion and a member of the NFL 2010s All-Decade Team.
The 29-year-old veteran safety had another solid showing in 2021, finishing with 76 tackles, six defended passes, three interceptions and a sack in 16 games. He also held opposing quarterbacks to an 88.1 passer rating and only allowed three touchdowns all year.
Beyond that, Mathieu has consistently demonstrated his ability to force turnovers in recent years. His 13 interceptions since the 2019 season are tied for the fifth-most during that span, with two of them being returned for a pick-six.
The AFC West is expected to be a tight division this year, especially after the Denver Broncos acquired Russell Wilson. The Chiefs' defense is already weak as it is, so signing him not only helps the Raiders stay in the division race but also hurts Kansas City even more in the process.
Oddsmakers have made it clear that the Raiders need a big shakeup if they want to finish as division champions. FanDuel Sportsbook currently has Las Vegas dead last in the AFC West race at +1000 odds.
Devon Platana is not a FanDuel employee. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.