While the Oakland Raiders successfully managed to put themselves in the playoff race heading into Week 11 of the 2019 NFL season, it came at quite a cost after they were dealt several crucial blows to their defense prior to the showdown with the Cincinnati Bengals.
The Raiders have already ruled Karl Joseph out for the rest of the year after suffering a foot injury while making the game-winning interception during the 26-24 win over the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 10. Fortunately, they are holding out hope that safety Lamarcus Joyner‘s hamstring issue will not be enough to make him miss any time.
Regardless, Oakland hs been busy shoring up dome more pieces for defensive coordinator Paul Guenther to work with following the addition of safety D.J. Swearinger and defensive end Dion Jordan. It appears they may be tasked with taking on an immediate role in the defensive scheme.
Guenther says the Raiders will need all the help they can get against the Bengals, via Vic Tafur of The Athletic:
Guenther expects Swearinger and Jordan to play Sunday. “All hands on deck.”
— Vic Tafur (@VicTafur) November 14, 2019
Guenther’s comments should hardly come as any surprise considering the recent rash of injuries that have plagued his group. Regardless, it will undoubtedly be interesting to see at which capacity they are utilized in Week 11.
Joyner is still listed as questionable heading into the game against Cincinnati and it seems Oakland is going to use as much time as they possibly can before making an official decision on his status. Even if he does play, it is safe to assume Guenther will need to rely heavily on his newfound depth to help secure things over the top.
This means Swearinger may get an immediate opportunity to provide the Raiders with some ban for their buck in his debut with the team. Safety Erik Harris is another player that could see an increase in his workload after a career day that saw him pick off quarterback Philip Rivers twice.
Meanwhile, head coach Jon Gruden had initially pegged Jordan as a long shot to play against the Bengals after bringing him in to help shore up some depth on the edge heading into the final stretch of the season. Guenther’s comments indicate that the backups will have their fair share of opportunities to show they can make an impact in this favorable matchup against a team that is still looking for its first win of the year.