The Oakland Raiders opted to shore up some depth on the edge heading into Week 11 by signing free agent defensive end Dion Jordan.
It is no secret that the defense has endured its fair share of injuries throughout the 2019 NFL season, especially over the top in the secondary. The Raiders are hoping that Jordan can potentially help provide a spark in the pass rush to help them out moving forward.
Jordan has struggled to live up to the hype of being a former top-3 pick during his career thus far. Regardless, Raiders head coach Jon Gruden is optimistic about what he brings to the table.
Gruden said during his press conference that he was impressed with what he had seen from Jordan during his time with the Seattle Seahawks during the 2018 season:
“We’ll find out,” Gruden said. “He’s a talented guy. We liked him at Oregon, we liked his body of work at Seattle last year when we played against him. We’re happy to have him, we need him. We’ll have a better piece of information for you after we get to see him.”
Gruden added that the prospect of Jordan making his season debut against the Bengals this week is a bit far-fetched, via Scott Bair of NBC Sports:
Gruden says it might be ambitious to think Dion Jordan could play Sunday, but the Raiders will keep an open mind about the prospect.
— Scott Bair (@BairNBCS) November 13, 2019
Jordan was initially taken with the third overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft by the Miami Dolphins. Unfortunately, his struggles with suspensions off the field ultimately led to his dwindling performance on the field.
Jordan’s arrival is certainly no coincidence after serving a 10-game suspension to start the season after violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, which spelled the end of his stint in Seattle. Despite his modest numbers, it seems he did more than enough to make a lasting impression on Gruden.
Although the 29-year-old has struggled to stay on track throughout his career, the Raiders are still hoping to take advantage of the talent that made him a bonafide first-round pick. Gruden’s comments indicate that they would be more than happy to provide him with an opportunity as soon as he can show that he is up to the task.
Regardless, it may be safe to assume that Jordan only plays in the event of an emergency against Cincinnati as he continues to get accustomed to the defensive scheme in Oakland.