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Raiders Draft Prospect: LB Ford of Texas

The Las Vegas Raiders could add to their linebacker room with Jaylan Ford of Texas in the 2024 NFL Draft.
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The Las Vegas Raiders are working through their offseason, looking for ways to improve their roster before they begin the regular season.

The Raiders are beginning an exciting time in Las Vegas as Coach Antonio Pierce and General Manager Tom Telesco kick off a new era of Raiders football. 

The Silver and Black ended the 2023 season with strong momentum, looking to build on it in 2024.

The 2024 NFL Draft less than two months away, a chance for teams to add young talent and build for the future. The Raiders have several good defensive players, especially at linebacker, but could add more depth to that position.

Jaylan Ford of Texas could be a good fit in that regard. A two-time First-Team All-Big 12 selection, Ford is one of the most athletic linebackers in the class.

Ford finished his Longhorns career with 287 total tackles, 27.5 tackles for losses, four forced fumbles, four passes defended, six interceptions and three sacks. 

In  addition, Ford performed well at the NFL Scouting Combine last week in Indianapolis, Ind., and participated at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala.

Texas linebacker Jaylan Ford could provide athleticism to the Las Vegas Raiders late in the draft.

Texas linebacker Jaylan Ford could provide athleticism to the Las Vegas Raiders late in the draft.

Ford stands 6-foot-2 and weighs 240 pounds. He is fairly tall with a slim waist and a strong, quick lower body. He played many snaps as a middle linebacker at Texas, but could transition to a new role in the NFL.

On tape, Ford is a relentless run defender. He is constantly shooting gaps and flying to the football to make plays. He is at his best in open space and chasing after ball carriers.

In the passing game, Ford has the athleticism to stay downfield, covering tight ends and the occasional wide receiver. He can move well downfield, even without game-breaking speed. 

Ford projects to be a player who can thrive on passing downs.

However, Ford’s speed could be a problem for him at the next level. He is sometimes slow to react to plays, and when blockers get to him, he is taken out of the play. He will need to be better at recognizing plays to stay on the field in the NFL.

Ford is projected to be a day three selection in the draft. Ford could provide run defense and athleticism to the Raiders’ linebacker room if they select him.

The NFL Draft will be held in Detroit, Mich., on April 25-27, 2024. The Las Vegas Raiders currently have the No. 13 overall pick.

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